Use of the IMAGE
Don’t forget the 3 second rule. In 3 seconds, your advert needs to communicate what you do (in broad terms) and engage me! The image is a MAJOR part of this. Let’s take a look at a few rules related to the use of images and then we’ll look at some amazing adverts that rely on an image to convey their message.
A good photograph can be just as important as the headline
It’s true – a picture is worth a thousand words. The picture is there to grab attention, to engage, inform, generate an emotion, to sell. Once engaged, the advert copy is read. If you don’t have an image, browse the multitude of photo stock libraries available. There are no excuses for a poor image.
The best photographs arouse the reader’s curiosity
The reader is prompted to enquire “What is this all about?” or “How would this benefit me?” and then read the advert copy.
The photograph must be related to the headline or subject
Using an image that is unrelated serves no purpose and leaves your reader confused and unlikely to read the advert.
Before and after shots is a proven way to increase sales
This is a great way to show the benefits of a product or service. Remember – people don’t buy features – they buy the benefits. If you are advertising an upholstery service, house washing, weight loss or a beauty product use before and after photos to clearly emphasise the benefits to the consumer.
Never use an image without a caption
Four times as many people read the caption as read the body copy. The best captions are like a mini-advertisement and can include the brand name and your promise. The caption should channel the reader’s thoughts rather than have them come to some random conclusion. Think about how you read a magazine article. Your attention starts with the headline then moves to the image and then the caption. The same takes place with your advert.
Avoid superimposing text onto pictures
Don’t do this or, if you must, make sure it’s readable. Text over busy, colourful images is difficult to read. Your message will be lost and your reader will be turned away.
The thing to take away from all of this is that it’s worth investing in your image. Whether you pay for a photographer, apply your amateur photography skills or subscribe to one of the numerous photo stock libraries, you need a great image. Anything less and your ROI is being diminished!
(Need a photo? Check out Bigstock or istock)
10 great images that sold
The following link picks out 10 great adverts that came out in 2015. They all rely heavily on the image to get my attention, get me thinking and have me take an action. My favourite is number 6, Mom’s Demand Action, closely followed by number 2, Pedigree. Click here to read the full article.