Susan Payton is the President of Egg Marketing & Communications, a content marketing & social media firm. She’s written three business books, and blogs about small business on sites including Forbes, AllBusiness, and The Marketing Eggspert Blog.
Numbers don’t lie: social media updates that include images get you a lot more attention on Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Facebook, and the like. The numbers show:
If you’re not using images in your social media, you’re missing out on serious opportunities to engage with your audience. Here are some ways to add a little visual oomph to your social media strategies.
1. Celebrate the season
Holidays provide a great excuse to dress up your social profiles, whether that’s in your profile header image or your social shares themselves.
Here’s a timely idea: in honor of the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens and its proximity to the holidays, Venngage created cool Star Wars ecards you can use to not only spread a little holiday cheer, but also connect with other Star Wars fans.
2. Share a blog post image
If you want to boost how many people click from your social stream to your blog, add a photo. Some social media platforms will automatically pull the image you have in the post, while for others, you’ll need to manually attach it. Do a quick preview to see if you need to add a photo before you hit publish.
3. Create an infographic
Who says every social post has to be about words? In fact, infographics are 30% more likely to be read than just plain text, so add them to your next social media update.
If you’re creating an infographic just for social media, keep it short and simple (as opposed to a longer one with more details that you’d publish in a blog post). You want to capture people’s attention and get them to share it, so make it visually dynamic and relevant.
4. Get professional headshots
If you’re the face of your brand, you need something better than that selfie you took at the Christmas party. Invest in professionally taken headshots and use them on your social media profiles. Use a different version for each channel to keep people interested.
5. Freshen your logo
If you prefer to use your company logo rather than your personal headshot, consider when the last time you had your logo updated was. If it’s been a while, get your graphic designer to give it a refresh in 2016. Use it across all your social media channels for consistency.
6. Visually brand each campaign
Whether you’re promoting a new product or a big giveaway, you’ll get more buy-in from social media followers if you have a customized graphic to accompany all promotions.
It doesn’t have to be complicated–just use the details of your promotion with an appealing image, and create a few different versions for variety. Check out this post for some quick image editing hacks.
7. Invest in stock photos
Did you know that you could be seriously fined if you use a photo you’re not authorized to publish online? That’s why stock photo sites are so useful: you pay either a subscription fee monthly or yearly, or buy photos one at a time to get high-quality photos that you have permission to use.
There are free stock photo sites out there, but they don’t all produce quality images. If you care about your brand’s reputation, you’ll invest the money to get clean, attractive images from a reputable website.
Visual elements are a fantastic addition to what you’re already doing on social media. Try out a few of these suggestions and see if you don’t get a boost in followers, shares, and clicks!