8 Types of Images That Will Drive Up Social Media Engagement Levels in Minutes

The average human gets distracted within 8 seconds of viewing something; which means you have only 8 seconds to impress your audience or risk losing their patronage forever.

Graphics in the form of videos and images have been found to increase social media engagement and effectiveness by a whopping 650%, making them absolutely perfect choices for attracting and engaging followers. This is why social media marketers and content writers rely heavily on images for their social media marketing campaigns.

These static graphics can save your life on social media

Studies show that images account for 90% of the advertising revenue on Facebook. The numbers are similar for other platforms like Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. If you’re a brand looking to attract and engage with followers on social media, then these static graphics will be a great way to get started:

1) Original photography

Maybe you’re an amateur photographer with a high-end vlogging camera or maybe you just like capturing everyday moments with your phone. Irrespective of who you are and how you take your photos, it’s important to know that when it comes to images, original photography is a huge magnet for social currency.

People across the world love viewing original photographs for the unique perspectives they lend to social media posts. They are highly-authentic, extremely realistic and allow audiences to actually connect with the photographers and the subjects.

Renowned handbag brand Totewell put original photographs to good use in their marketing campaign by asking customers to publish their best Totewell shots on Instagram. The experiment was engaging, interactive and loads of fun.


2) Stock photographs

Let’s face it. Stock images are abused and overused by many that you’d think posts that use stock images will fail dismally in the eyes of audiences. But think again.

A superior-quality stock photography is a God-send for social media content marketing. They are designed to attract audiences to the content and to persuade them to engage in an action. If done right, a well-placed stock image can have a great impact on the article/blog post.

When using stock images, remember that less is more. Use images which are simple, easy-to-understand and relevant to the topic you’re writing about. Choose images that are the closest to your brand or which can show customers the benefits of using your product.


3) Infographics

41% of global marketers prefer using original graphics in the form of infographics for their social media posts. Research also shows that infographics outrank some of the most popular visuals such as GIFs and videos, having 3X higher share-ability compared to other forms of graphics. But why?

Infographics, with their easy-to-understand images and limited use of words, are highly memorable, leading to an information recall up to 65% even 3 days after viewing the visual. This makes them extremely powerful tools in audience engagement.

If you wish to introduce a new idea or have your make an impact, then using an infographic is the way to go. This infographic by Twitter user Social-Media-As-A-Service is a great example of implementing infographics to showcase research results.


4) Personal photographs

Personal photographs are a tricky medium to work with. This is primarily because they work best with renowned individuals.

If you’re currently working with an influencer (or plan to do so), then utilizing personal photographs of the influencers is a great way to market your products. When influencers post candid pictures of themselves, they add a realistic touch to the posts. These images show audiences that they (influencers) are as human as their followers and have their own quirks and foibles.

This picture of social media influencer Kendall Jenner posted by model Heather McDonald proves that even the fittest of us love our pop tarts.


5) Behind-the-scenes takes

Have you ever wondered what fun ensues behind-the-scenes on the sets of your favourite TV show? Have you always wanted to know what your favourite wildlife photographer does to capture those breathtaking shots of a dangerous animal?

Questions like these often plague the minds of followers and your audiences will do just about anything to get a glimpse into the real lives of their much-loved ‘reel’ stars. Behind-the-scenes images offer audiences an opportunity to look at celebrities and influencers as friends who go through the same triumphs and trials as the rest of us. This makes the brand relatable.

This photograph re-tweeted by National Geographic introduces us to the conquests and challenges of the staff, who are dedicated to conservation.


6) Screenshots

Screenshots are great for content marketing. Why? They can be used for everything from introducing new ideas to adding a humorous quotient to the write-up. They are also excellent evidence of experiments and tests that brands conduct on social media.

Take the example of the test that Buffer conducted on Twitter. By using a screenshot to compare two different marketing strategies, the company showed viewers quantitative and qualitative proof of the success of their experiment. This screenshot was one of the most widely shared posts on Twitter.

Not only did the screenshot help highlight the key results of the experiment, but they also made the very-wordy article more interesting.


7) Images with quotes

Motivational posters are a thing of the past. Today, it’s all about motivational posts. When combined with the right imagery, font and colour, graphic quotes make for highly engaging social media content.

Basic psychology dictates that people love having their beliefs reaffirmed in the form of images, videos and quotes. Posts that have graphic quotes on them fulfil this primary requirement. The trick to posting an engaging quote on social media is to find an image that captures the essence of your message.

If your brand is a self-help brand, then using quotes on a serene background will be a good choice. This quote from Brainy Quotes is a great example.


8) Visuals that use colour psychology

Did you know? Colours can improve blog readership by 40%, comprehension by 73% and learning, up to 80%? Colour psychology has an immense impact on the way audiences view a social media post and how they interact with it. By using the right colour combination in your images, you can encourage followers to behave in particular ways and indulge in certain actions.

For example, red symbolizes excitement so you can use red colour in your images to get people to sign up for contests and competitions. White and pastels, on the other hand, are serene and calming and are great if you run an NGO and wish to promote peace on social media.

Colours can also be used to attract attention to the brand and its products while taking the attention away from your competitors. A great example is how the Dollar Shave Club distinguishes itself from its competitors solely based on colours.


Wrapping it up

Gone are the days of creating text-heavy content. Today marketers need to tap into the visual needs of their followers to create high-quality, enjoyable content. Using these 8 types of images will help marketers take the first step towards higher engagement and greater social media visibility.