Monday, August 1, 2016
Your Website and Graphics
By Karen Cioffi
The title of this article specifies your website, but it’s just as relevant to your social media marketing and content marketing. And, it’s relevant whether you’re a freelance writer, a book marketer, a solopreneur, or small business.
Graphics are persuasive. Graphics are powerful.
To show you just how persuasive and effective they are, let’s look at some statistics and information from 3M Corporation in the article, The Power of Visual Communication by Mike Parkinson.
1. “Visuals are processed 60,000 times faster than text, graphics quickly affect our emotions, and our emotion greatly affect our decision-making.”
2. Over 90% of information the brain receives and processes is visual.
3. According to Dr. Lynell Burmark, Ph.D. Associate at the Thornburg Center for Professional Development, words are received and managed by our short-term memory and most people can only hold on to 5-9 bits of information. Images go straight into long-term memory; there those images are permanently imprinted.
4. A 1986 study at the University of Minnesota School of Management discovered that “presenters who use visual aids are 43% more effective in persuading audience members to take a desired course of action than presenters who don't use visuals.”
5. In a survey conducted by the Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab almost 50% of the participants said that when deciding the credibility of a website, its design look was the most significant determining factor.
6. According to Robert E. Horn, a Stanford University's Center for the Study of Language and Information scholar, when words and visuals are tightly meshed together, something new is created—the capability to soak-in, understand, and more effectively produce lots and lots of fresh information.
7. It’s synergy. The combined parts (words and visuals) are much more effective, powerful than the individual parts.
8. Companies and even governments spend billions of dollars each year to find ‘the’ image or imagery that will motivate the audience to buy whatever it is they’re selling: a product, service, or even an idea.
Okay, is that enough? Do you get that graphics, images . . . imagery is what will create results in marketing?
I sure do.
My biggest take away from the 3M in-depth article is that the buyer’s decisions are ‘greatly’ affected by his emotions. And, his emotions are ‘quickly’ affected by graphics.
So, for 2016 and beyond, it will be essential to use emotional imagery to motivate and persuade your audience.
But . . . yes, there’s a ‘but.’
People have been bombarded with those cookie-cutter images (I’m guilty of this too), thus making them much less effective.
An article at Forbes, explains that for images to now be effective they need to have a more natural element to them. The article refers to them as “natural stock photography.”
I started noticing this recently on Twitter and other social networks. There have been some beautiful ‘natural’ scenery images. And, they are powerful enough to grab you. This is what website design, including the images in your blog posts, should look like moving forward.
Another hot tip: Moving images with motivating quotes are still highly shareable graphics, as are infographics.
What are your website design plans for the rest of this year?
MORE ON WRITING AND MARKETING
‘If and When’ Were Planted, and Nothing Grew
How to Grow a Large Twitter Following
Why Specialize as a Writer
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