Imagery with a purpose
A recent industry report revealed that Visual images came out on top, as the most important form of web content, as well as the most common web content.
This is something that I, as a professional photographer can readily understand.
Eye tracking research shows visual imagery draws the viewers’ attention. Visual imagery is processed quicker than text and is more memorable. Images as web content are much more likely to elicit an emotional response than text alone.
Images and text are much more memorable than text alone.
Some research suggests that when we hear or read the text we are likely to remember 10% of the information for ten days. The good news is when this is associated with the right image this increases to 65%, this phenomenon is called picture superiority effect.
However stunning or impactful great images are they are likely to be ignored if they are not seen as relevant.
“Users pay close attention to photos and other images that contain relevant information but ignore fluffy pictures used to 'jazz up' web pages" Nielson Norman Group
How we apply this in practice need not be too onerous.
When I’m working with marketeers they have a clear idea of the purpose of the shoot, there are often specific shots, a knowledge of where and how they will be used, it is also an opportunity to take generic shots that can be used further down the line.
It is important for me as a photographer to understand the marketeers’ vision and how the images I will produce are relevant to their brand. This can be conveyed through a written brief or a chat on the phone and is helped by building a good working relationship between myself and the marketeer.
Images should be simple and clear, viewers will process this information quickly and are more likely to remember it.
Images should also be relevant, a relevant well shot image of your product or service will create and reinforce a positive response while helping build trust and credibility for your brand.
Images are imbued with narratives, how a photographer interprets this to produce the right image is often what distinguishes a good photographer from an ordinary one.