- Posting an image on Facebook can increase engagement by 200%.
- Pinterest, a popular and still growing social network is an image-heavy interface. Pinterest drives more referral traffic than Google+, YouTube and LinkedIn combined.
- Facebook purchased Instagram for one billion, one of the biggest social purchases.
- Instagram is a photo sharing app that lets users click pictures from their mobile phones, apply an optional “filter” to the image and share it with their friends. It had 30 million registered users in April 2012.
- Facebook changed their profiles to the Timeline which includes a large image header and the ability to highlight posts and re-position photos
- Over 4 billion videos are viewed a day on YouTube and YouTube gets over 800 million unique visitors each month.
- Recently, LinkedIn re-designed their company pages to include an image header.
- On September 18th, Twitter announced changes to their profiles to include a header photo with a blog post titled “Because You Have More To Show.”
Social networks are fulfilling a web user’s need for visual information.
Images, infographics, word clouds and videos are now telling stories. They are telling a small business’ story. They are providing a brand experience.
Are you catching the visual attention of potential customers or clients?
These are some common initial responses I receive when discussing visuals with clients:
“I don’t even know where to begin with creating images.”
“Do I have to hire a graphic designer?”
“That would take too much time”
“What kind of images do I have to create?”
As web users continue to crave visual information, social networks continue to create visual communities, and in turn new applications are created to make it quick and easy to work with images. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t outsource to a graphic designer or consider one.
When making this decision, you should first layout a strategy, consider the quality you are looking for and determine if working with images is really worth a time investment.
To encourage and help you embrace our visual web, I have listed some free tools that are easy to learn and can help you quickly implement visuals into your blogging, social media and other online activities.
- PicMonkey (Check out: Have You Heard Of: PicMonkey)
- Gimp – a free photo editing software (similar to photoshop)
- How to Create An Awesome Infographic
- Visual.ly - Free Infographic Builder
- Wordle - Free Word Cloud Builder
- YouTube – click on Upload and select Record from Webcam (easy peasy!)
- Aviary – free online and mobile photo editing
Have you implemented images, infographics, word clouds or videos into your online marketing? If so, which one do you find more effective?
If you have not started using visuals to represent your company, do you feel like it’s something you should consider?
I look forward to your comments!
As always, I am here if you need assistance. I also have affiliations with graphic designers and other contractors that can assist with images and design services so feel free to contact me!
References: LinkedIn Blog, Twitter Blog, Huffington Post, NDTV Gadgets, JeffBullas.com, Mashable, VikiTech.com