Monday, June 4, 2012

Putting Photos to Work – Some Reasons Why Images Work Wonders In Social Media Marketing

Tapping into the power of images

As a marketer, you've probably heard the saying about a photo being worth a thousand words for the nth time. Sure, it's a cliché, but clichés work because they are true. And images when applied to social media marketing have worked wonders for numerous brands.

Since more and more platforms are focusing on visuals – think of Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr and SlideShare just to name a few – many savvy marketers are starting to explore ways on how they can incorporate visuals into their marketing arsenal. So, what really is it with images and why do they work so well in social media? Below are some good reasons.

Images just work because they...

Help Cut through the clutter

People, including your target market, love images simply because they cut through the clutter of a rather busy social media environment. With all the heavy text-based posts they see on their streams on a daily basis, images are like a breath of fresh air that create a nice diversion, allowing users to stop and think, and easily understand a subject that might be difficult to decipher especially when placed in words.

Easily grab attention and generate likes, shares, pins, +1s and comments

Images easily capture the attention of people and hold that attention long enough compared to text-based content. Simply put, it only takes a few seconds for a person to look at a picture and realize the message that it would like to convey as oppose to reading a paragraph or two about the same subject.

Similarly, when end users find an image interesting, they are likely to spread the word about it along with your business by liking, sharing, pinning or giving it a +1. An image can also spark conversations, and having people backing you up is a clear indication that you are credible, thereby encouraging people to take more interest in your business.

Differentiate brand from competition

With more and more brands finding their way on social networking sites, the sectors are starting to blur and the ranges of brands are beginning to more alike. Hence, in a platform where gratification precedes loyalty, using unique images allows a marketer to differentiate itself from the competition by turning both concepts and intangible things into something more concrete in the eyes of consumers. Likewise, images create a sense of identification for the brand as well as a lasting first impression, providing consumers with an idea about its core offerings.

Connect to a personal level and trigger emotions

If you are to check Pinterest, you will notice that many images combined with quotes are generating a lot of likes, repins and comments. The reason behind this is that those images, in a way, validate the identity of users.

When applied in the context of social media marketing, compelling images that tell the story of a brand help triggers positive emotions and moods, and also create a unique and memorable experience for consumers. In most cases, images also create a sense of immediacy for the consumer to purchase a product or service because they reflect their desires and needs.

By Robert Kirk who runs a Website Design and Search Engine Optimisation company in Scotland, UK called RFK Solutions.

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