What you see is what you get – How images create emotions and are therefore crucial for your marketing strategy
It’s an oldie, but goodie, so trust us when we say: a picture is really worth a thousand words. The visual system in humans gathers up to 80% of all the sensory data received from the environment, ergo it comes as no surprise that 67% of customers say that images largely affect their buying decision. In our digital world, we are constantly overloaded with all different sorts of images leading to a decreased concentration span of 8 seconds on average. Gone are the times that people will actually invest in reading. To create an instant connection with your audience, your image marketing strategy has to be on point. Your goal is to create, use and diffuse customized visuals that trigger emotions, which will ultimately lead to sales. In this article we illustrate 4 different use cases of images, so open your eyes:
No images = no online sales
When selling online, your products are the heart of your business and therefore their presentation should always be one of your top priorities. Traditional retailers have an advantage over e-commerce by offering their customers the opportunity to touch and observe every detail, to test and experience the product. 62% of American customers are stating that they want the tactile experience which is provided offline. Due to the Covid-19 crisis, e-commerce has seen a rise since people were forced to stay and do their shopping at home. But only those e-retailers who successfully implement a post-covid marketing strategy will be ahead of their competitors (including brick-and-mortar stores), when we go back to the so-called new “normal”. Your images are at the core of your visual content strategy and the good news is that high quality and high resolution pictures can close the “emotional” gap between an online and offline shopping experience.
Depending on the context, different types of images serve a different purpose and are best for specific stages of the customer journey. Compelling slides or hero images for instance, grab your audience’s attention and communicate your brand’s aesthetics when entering your website; lifestyle and model images put your products in real life scenarios; and various product images in different angles give your clients important information about your offers. For the best customer experience, you should also consider including image zoom and 360° features as standards. Since research shows that 22% of customers are returning products because the received products look different than online, high quality images will not only lead to higher sales, but also to decreased return rates.
Choose the best brand imagery for your business
When we dive deeper into the connection between images and emotions which ultimately lead to sales, your brand image and your brand identity are crucial.There can be some confusion about all the different terms, which are often used interchangeably, but to wrap it up: your brand image is the actual perception people have about your brand and your products, while your brand identity represents how your company portrays itself. Ideally, these two match. The key to this is your brand imagery which is way more than your company logo. It is one piece within your brand identity kit that defines the aesthetics of your brand’s messaging. In short, it is all your pictures and visuals.
The purpose of brand imagery is to transfer the right messages with your target so that they develop strong emotions when they encounter your brand. But how can you choose the right images for your business goals? Think of your ideal customer: What is important to them? Do you want to reach lovers of luxury or seekers for adventure? Families or Gen Z’ers? When you know your target well, you can define what kind of images will appeal to them and pick the right design and color strategy in order to create images that will trigger emotions. In doing this, you heavily rely on your creative teams: A powerful tool like the Wedia Content Picker will help you to simplify image editing and uploading by providing a seamless connection between your DAM solution and adobe tools and guarantees smooth workflows and a convincing image marketing strategy. With the Content Picker, you can access media directly from within your most used workplaces, like the Adobe suite. And thanks to our Digital eXperience Management module, you don’t even have to worry about finding the right image for the right context, DXM is doing this automatically for you.
The right image marketing strategy on social media
Social Media Marketing has become mandatory for all companies who want to reach their customers where they spend an important part of their free-time (on average 2 hours and 24 minutes per day). You can think of social media channels as an extension of your brand voice. And the only language that you have to master on these networks, is, you guessed right…visual language. Our brain can interpret illustrations, graphics, memes, animated pictures, moving images, stories, schemas, infographics etc. much faster than texts. Facebook posts featuring images receive 2,3 times more engagement than those without, and on Twitter images will bring you on average 150% more retweets. But using relevant images on social media will not only allow you to increase engagement, but also to gain attention and create loyalty and an emotional connection with your audience. Keep in mind that highly strong image-based platforms, such as Instagram (with 955 uploaded images each second) or Pinterest will need a different approach than more traditional networks. Each channel is different, so your images have to be consistent, contextualised and adapted to a variety of formats. Digital Experience Management supports you to tackle this task and to provide an engaging and personalized customer experience across all channels at scale.
When doing it right, your social media images can get huge exposure. Nobody will repost a product description, but appealing images are shareable and can get far, which in the end, is like free advertising for your brand
Image SEO strategy meets image marketing strategy
Your images are not only working for you up-front, but also in the background. They are a highly valuable SEO asset and can boost your website’s value and organic traffic even further. By using the right image and image size, you can reduce site loading time and bounce rate and therefore, improve your user experience.
Furthermore, the right metadata allows search engines to crawl and index your images which will lead to a better ranking. Taking good care of your images’ dimensions, file sizes, names, captions and alt texts, will definitely help improve your Image SEO Strategy. It might seem like a time-consuming process, but the final payoff is worth the energy and luckily, Digital Asset Management combined with Digital eXperience features allows you to automate some of these tasks and to manage them faster.
In our visual and digital world, the importance of images as part of your marketing strategy can not be underestimated. They reach and touch your audience directly and on a deeper level and have an important impact on buying decisions and engagement and should therefore be a cornerstone of your marketing strategy.