Gray Box Studios - Paul Gomez
Marketing campaign success hinges not only on the message but the visual elements that attract audiences. Photographs and graphic arts are the foundation marketers use to represent a business, product, or service and increases campaign success when imagery is used properly. When using imagery, it's vital to understand how images can be used and where they best fit into a campaign.
Have you ever heard the phrase, "A picture is worth a thousand words?" That's because it's true. The messages behind imagery are nearly limitless as each unique perception interprets the image slightly differently. With five senses, the visual sense often overrides other senses. The McGurk Effect is a scientific example of study where "what you see overrides what you hear." Some scientific research believes up to 50% of our brain's resources are used to see - incredible! Our visual senses are very powerful and can be used to attract audiences to products or services.
In today's digital age, the power of imagery has been so exploited that society has become entangled with the visual sensations of social media and its imagery and reels. People would rather watch a 10-second video or carousel imagery than read text. Content paired with images consistently pulls in more clicks, likes, and interactions.
The lack of visuals may result in being ignored. Consumers are 60 times more likely to connect with a brand, business, or service that includes imagery compared to content that ignores visual imagery.
With the advent of the digital age, consumers have grown accustomed to obtaining gratification nearly immediately. A person who desires new shoes can click a button in 3 seconds, and wala, shoes are on the way. Need groceries or lunch? You don't even need to leave home. Click and button and food appears on the doorstep within a relatively short time.
Instant gratification is the baseline for doing business. Regarding marketing, instant gratification is met when messaging is quick, simple, and easy to understand. And, with visual elements, the speed at which we analyze an image is fast - very fast. Most marketers understand that messaging must be received within 5 to 10 seconds before the user moves on.
When promoting your brand, visual elements will reach more audiences because the message is sent whether the audience is interested at the moment or not. Viewers get a feel for what you are promoting nearly immediately with visual imagery.
Photographs and imagery can evoke emotions. Consider what emotions are involved with an image. When choosing what picture to pair with your messaging, ensure your selected photos invoke your target emotions. A beautifully crafted culinary masterpiece can be very appealing, but the same dish with a happy couple becomes more emotional and relatable.
Photographs and images can become relatable. Consider what audiences are interested in and how this plays into your brand. When the images you use are relatable to your audience, your audiences are more susceptible to the messaging. The recent Budweiser messaging and imagery of 2023 have made headlines with severe backlash. Although society has been very progressive, the majority of Budweiser consumers do not relate to the imagery or messaging it sends, and Budweiser has lost millions. Relatable imagery and messaging can go both ways, both positively and negatively. Understanding your audience is imperative to successful, relatable imagery.
High-quality visual elements become memorable and can significantly impact the influence it delivers to its audience. Likewise, poor-quality images can have an opposing impact. Consider crafting high-quality images that are long-lasting and timeless.
And lastly, never use imagery that seems out of place. You would never use an image of a male model to sell ladies' toiletry products. Or consistently use Caucasian models when the demographics are very diversified. Sometimes a great photo is just that and needs to fit better with your messaging.
Pairing your messaging with the right imagery is easier said than done. Considering the four elements of how to use imagery is a great foundation. Consumers today have a lot of experience in judging photographs and visual arts. For example, in the late 80s and early 90s, food photography often used props and other materials to represent food. Excellent food photographs and imagery were taken. However, this was poorly received as audiences identified the misrepresentation rather quickly.
High-quality imagery will out-sell sub-par quality imagery every time. Moreover, what's in the photograph is just as important as the quality of the picture itself. Even with technological advancements, which allow inexperienced photographers to take stunning images, only a professional photographer has the understanding and skill to capture the right images.
If you are considering a professional photographer for your marketing projects, consider Gray Box Studios. Our success is built on great relationships, amazing craftsmanship, and successful creativity.