"Of all of our inventions for mass communication, pictures still speak the most universally understood language." - Walt Disney
Readers are more likely to view and remember blog posts that include visual content. According to speakerBOX, content with images get 94% more views than content without pictures.
- 90%of information sent to our brain is visual, and visuals are processed 60,000 times faster than text.
- Xerox researchers learned colored visuals increase people's willingness to read content by 80%.
- Facebook updates with images get 2.3 times more engagement than posts without images.
Storytelling is not limited to text, visual images help convey our message. I like to incorporate original content when possible, but the pictures I find on sites like Photopin, Pixabay, and Flickr, are creative and of higher quality than what I can typically take with my smartphone. Photopin is my first stop for images because most of the content is free, I can search images by theme, and an attribution code is provided after I select the size of a picture I want to download.
Two other tools I frequently use to enhance blog posts with visual content are Google Drawings and Nimbus Screenshot add-on for Chrome. I prefer embeddable content over inserting a file because posts will open faster in a browser and the formatting typically holds regardless of device. When I finish a Google drawing, I publish the file to the web, so HTML code is created. Inserting the visual is then an easy matter of copying the code and pasting into HTML code within Blogger.
Years ago, I spent some time as a journalist while in college. I picked up a few tricks about image sizing and page layout. I appreciate bloggers who are conscientious about the appearance of their pages and posts. My RSS reader shows thumbnails of posts in the blogroll. Following the statistics provided by research, I gravitate towards posts that have visual content. When I curate, or "flip," content into my Flipboard magazines it is the images that make them visually stunning in the iOS app. Knowing how to optimally size images for social media use helps keep a balance between text and pictures while not posting pictures that hang over the edges of the post. This infographic is a helpful resource for sizing your photos for sharing on social media.
Don't get me wrong, I enjoy writing for its therapeutic value, but if a picture can save me a thousand words, then I chalk that up to being efficient with digital space. Actually, I believe there is a craftsmanship to publishing blog posts that are visually appealing and engaging. I often choose images that are somewhat ambiguous so on the one hand, they support the written message, and on the other hand, readers have the opportunity to offer their own interpretation.
If you read blogs, how much do you value the visual content? If you're a blogger, how much thought do you put into the visual aspects of your posts?