Have you ever wondered how some businesses just seem to be able to grow their email lists or attract a loyal + engaged fan base or just sell bucket loads of products?
It all starts with an image or what marketers like to call marketing visuals. A striking image that grabs a persons attention and gets them to want to know more.
65% of senior marketing executives believe that visual assets (photos, video, illustrations and infographics) are core to how their brand story is communicated. (source: Hubspot)
Images tell a story and we emotionally connect with stories. And when a visitor emotionally connects with your brand, they’re going to want to know more. That’s half the battle won.
For creative businesses like yours and mine, our ultimate goal with visual marketing is to entice someone to take the next step. Be it signing up to a newsletter, claiming a discount or reading a blog post.
I’m giving you a simple strategy that ensures a visitor will take that next step when they see your eye-catching visual.
If you’re new to creating your own marketing visuals I’ve created a really quick guide on how to create eye-catching images for your blog + business using Canva.
Let’s dive in and learn the fundamentals of creating a great marketing visual that easily converts
START WITH A GOOD IMAGE
If you own your own camera, learn how to take good photos for your business. This way you’re in no doubt that your marketing visuals won’t be found anywhere else and they’ll be completely unique to your business.
If you don’t have the time to take your own photos you can either use free stock images or buy an image license. Below I’ve 5 places I’ve used to find both free and licensed images.
Using a stock image will mean that your marketing visuals may not be entirely unique, but Canva’s editing + filtering options make is easy to create a visual that won’t be the same as someone else’s.
Here’s a good example where Rose and I have use the same image but in different ways. We’ve cropped it differently, included our own brand colours and used different fonts.
If you don’t want to use a stock image in your marketing visuals you can get creative with Canva and create simple visuals that don’t include an image.
An important note: Please please please don’t ever use an image you’ve ‘found’ online. Lifehacker said it best in their article on legally using online photos – ‘assume every image you find is copyrighted’.
If you’re still thinking… ‘no one will know’, or ‘they’ll never find me, I’m only a little business’… Chrystie’s $7,500 mistake will convince you to never use an image you’ve just found.
A GOOD FONT
Having a little text on your visual lets someone know what to expect when they click on the image or link. It ensures that you’re attracting your ideal visitor. To be effective, you want to make sure that your text stands out on the visual.
Place it and size it in a way that’s easy to read and draws your eye to it.
And don’t forget to keep your fonts in keeping with your branding.
When choosing your fonts, don’t over do it. Use a max of 2 font’s that compliment each other. If you’re a little unsure how to choose 2 fonts, here’s a great guide to font pairing from Canva.
Not all your marketing visuals will necessarily need text. Instagram is a great example where a lot of businesses don’t rely on text to engage with their audiences. But you do need to have great images for Instagram.
If you’re a little unsure whether or not to include text do some research before finalising your visual.
TELL A STORY
If you are going to purchase an image or spend time editing a free one or taking your own, make sure the image either has some relevance to your content or fits in well your brand.
Wade at WealMedia explains the psychology of visual marketing really well.
“Why a picture is worth so many words.
There is a role that emotion plays with memory and it’s important to bring some of this out when you’re picking your image. The idea behind the picture being worth a thousand words is connected to the emotional side of the brain.”
We run businesses where we want to connect with our readers + customers, so take a little time choosing a good image.
Don’t worry if your photo doesn’t directly tell the story of what you write about, not all of them need to. You’ll notice that not all my photos match exactly to what I write about, but they have a business entrepreneurial feel to them that enhances my overall brand + story.
MATCHES YOUR BRAND
You want to make sure that your marketing visuals are attracting the type of visitor that will fall in love with what you do. The best way to make sure that your visuals align with your brand, is to have a brief guide that you can follow when choosing or creating a visual.
Ask yourself these 4 questions:
- Does the image reflect your brand’s personality?
- Does the style of the image work with your brand?
- Can the colours work with your brand’s colour palette?
- Is the image of the same quality as your business?
Relevant reading: If you aren’t entirely sure what your brand experience is for a customer, CreativeMarket helps explain how to design a brand identity.
TWO EXTRA HELPFUL NOTES
Create the correct size visual
Have you ever gone to pin some amazing content or a product to Pinterest and the image is tiny. Argh! Or have you ever uploaded a rectangular image to Instagram? Hmm, that just screwed up my Instagram branding…
Creating the correct size image means that no matter what device a person is using, your marketing visual will always be effective. Canva makes it easy for you to have all your marketing visuals the correct size. Now you have no excuse, make sure it’s the right size visual.
Keeping your marketing visuals consistent shows that you take care in your business. Create a template for every type of marketing visual you create.
Every time you need to create a new one, simply make a copy and update it. The bonus is once you’ve created the template, you’ve just saved yourself a tone of time creating future visuals. Again Canva saves your work, so it’s easy to keep your visuals consistent.
Looking for images to use for your business or blog?
Here are 5 places I’ve used in the past:
Free stock images:
- Getty Images (Getty has just released 35million free images. Hootsuite tells you how you’re allowed to use them.)
- Death to the Stock Photo
Styled stock photos for creative businesses:
These are the two places I head to for paid stock images
Rachel is my go to gal for stock images! I love what she creates and it they work so well with my brand identity.
If you’re looking for more styled stock images, Bluchic pulled together 12 great places to find styled stock photo’s.
A good visual is one that catches someone’s eye and entices them to want to know more about your blog and business. Follow these simple tips and you should see more engagement, sign ups and sales with the visuals you create and share.
Which one of these 4 elements of a great marketing visual are you going to start doing today? Let me know in the comments below.