Content is king. But if you want your written word to get so much as a glance, images need to reign over your content. Readers want to be shown what they're getting into. In this fast-paced information age, even the most pertinent information is lost without eye-catching imagery. The right images mixed with ground-breaking content make a dynamic force to be reckoned with.
If you want your blog to buzz, social media is a must. A recent study by Hubspot revealed that photos on Facebook pages received 53 percent more likes than the average post. The study also found that photo posts attracted 104 percent more comments than the average post. Not sure what posts are working for you? Look for applications like Spredfast to see how your target audience is engaging with your content.
Facebook and Twitter are vital for sharing content but don't forget the image queen of social media, Pinterest. A 2013 study by Shareaholic showed Pinterest drove 3.68 percent of traffic to publishers, second only to Facebook. This image-driven social network relies on captivating photos to capture the eye of its 70 million users (and counting). If you want your blog to reap the benefits of this social media platform, you need high-quality and well thought-out images. Visit Lowes' Pinterest boards for excellent examples of how images lead to viewer engagement on their DIY blog.
Build Your Brand
You would never dream of sharing a post you haven't carefully re-read and edited. It is, after all, your voice and tells people who you are. This should also apply to the images you choose to attach with your posts. When it comes to consumers researching online, 63 percent say they value the quality of a product's image as more important than product-specific information. Images create credibility and set the standard for your brand. If you are selling products, services or information and want to be a trusted source, make the effort to include professional images for your site. You don't need a high-priced photographer to capture images for you. Companies like iStock provide massive databases of high-quality images and creative inspiration to further maximize your posts effectiveness.
Capture Attention Fast
People don't have time to waste on text. In fact, you have less than half a second to capture a reader's attention online. Before someone becomes a follower, they need to know what they are reading is worth their time. If your goal is not only to gain new followers but keep them coming back, choose images that are as interesting as they are relevant. For example, don't post a picture of a cute puppy that links to your post about “Healthy Eating Habits for Runners.” You might capture attention but without relevancy, you'll lose your target audience and credibility in a flash.