5 Reasons to Include Images in Your Content Planning Process
Do you know about the powerful potential of using photos in your content? If you aren’t already planning your images as a part of your content calendar, then you should start strategizing today.
They Are More Captivating
Think of social media newsfeeds like a virtual highway. You wouldn’t put a text block on a highway billboard and expect drivers speeding by to get your message, would you? No. Billboards are a mesh of images and shortened text, all designed to captivate a viewers attention in less than three seconds. Your content should have the same kind of appeal, with an instant message your viewers will understand and click on to further see your content.
They Keep Attention
Today’s average reader has a very short attention span. Readers spend an average of four seconds skimming the subheads and images of an article before deciding whether or not to really spend time on the content. What you put above the fold (whatever fits on the screen before scrolling down) is going to matter. Use short paragraphs and smartly worded subheads, as well as relevant images, to keep your audience from bouncing.
They Encourage Sharing
- Tweets with images receive 150% more retweets than those without (Buffer).
- 87% of all interactions on top Facebook posts from brands were on posts containing images. (Socialbakers)
- More than 90% of company leaders say the use of images or photos is an important tactic in their content optimization (B2B Marketing Mentor), but only 60% of marketers say they are creating their own images or branded images for their content (Social Media Examiner).
If images are important for sharing on non-visually based platforms (Facebook and Twitter), then imaging the importance on the visual platforms (Instagram, Pinterest, Flickr, etc.). You should be investing in visual aids that will encourage your audience to share. When you create your own images, you can place your company watermark and branded message right onto the image. That way, the shared images still carry your brand name for increasing the reach of your branding effects.
According to Brandr, photo posts get more than 100% more comments than non-photo posts, and branded images (images with text and design overlays) get 35% more interactions than the posts with regular images.
They Can Help Drive Direction
If you are going to be creating and branding your own images, then you will want to include them in your content planning process. Not only will you need time to plan photoshoots, capture good photos and edit your images, you will also find that sometimes the image ideas will drive your content. When you have a really good photoshoot, you might come up with more content ideas to work with the images you have for your blog and newsletter writers. To reduce redundancy, you can include different images on different platforms. You might be inspired to write about details or different angles as offshoots of your original content idea, reducing the time you spend brainstorming future content ideas. When you write content to work with images, you might also find your wording changes slightly in order to use the picture as a better visual aid.
They Promote You as an Authoritative Source
The more you stand out from the crowd, the more your brand becomes the authoritative source in the industry. Images help boost your status here. If you are using stock images, then your content will start to look like other companies’ content and you will struggle to maintain a consistent brand look. However, if you are taking your own images, or at least branding the stock images you want to use, then you will have your own content that aligns better with your brand.
Alethea M is a corporate blogging guru and freelance writer for WriterAccess. She loves pulling out interesting facts from article research to impress friends at dinner parties.