How to Market Effectively with Images

Posted by: Chris Marentis

How to Market Effectively with Images


Whether it’s a blog post, website homepage, or social media post, it’s clear that photos and videos play a major role in marketing. Several studies show that web users pay more attention—and remember what they see—when visual content is paired with text. According to Zabisco, 40 percent of people respond better to visual content than they do to text alone, and your business can’t afford to miss 40 percent of your audience.

SuccessFollow a Few Basic Guidelines

Even though most local marketing experts agree that it’s best to use images in all forms of marketing, it’s also equally important to make sure that you are using the right images and using them effectively. Make sure that the images you use are relevant to the content you’re providing. If users get the impression that you used stock images that don’t relate to or enhance the text, they may be more likely to ignore your content altogether.

Instead, use a captivating image that reinforces the message you’re trying to communicate. Also, make sure that you’re using high-quality images that aren’t copyright protected. You may have to purchase images from a reputable source such as Getty Images or, but the cost of these images is usually minimal when you consider the impact that a thoughtful image will produce.

Here are a couple of examples of brands that have used images effectively:

Nike Turns Up Visual Impact with Instagram Campaign

Nike has a strong visual brand identity across a variety of media, especially on social networking sites. Most important, the brand unites all of its visual imagery across several social networks. For instance, it uses Instagram hashtags to alert Twitter followers about a new photo.

Recently, Nike celebrated its 2-year- anniversary with Instagram by holding a photo contest for followers. The company showcased the top 10 photos from Instagram followers, a move that increased user engagement while reinforcing its visual brand identity.

Sephora Keeps Users Engaged with Mobile App

Cosmetics brand Sephora took visual engagement to the next level by incorporating images in its mobile “Beauty Board” app. People who use the app can upload photos of themselves wearing their favorite Sephora cosmetics. That way, shoppers can log in to the app to see for themselves how the products look on other people. After the app was launched, sales increased significantly, and more than 30 percent of the jump in Black Friday sales could be traced to mobile users.

The Possibilities Are Endless

There are endless examples of brands that have used images effectively in their marketing. For small business owners, the challenge is to apply these ideas to your own business. Tap into your creativity to find ways to incorporate more visuals in your blog posts, local social media marketing, and more. 

Chris Marentis

For nearly three decades, Chris Marentis, Founder and CEO of Surefire Social, has been responsible for driving innovation and sales growth for large media and e-commerce brands as well as start-ups. With a long-history of counseling local businesses about their marketing efforts, Marentis provides insight on what it takes for small businesses to succeed and thrive in today’s evolving digital environment. His notable career includes creating the foundational blueprints for online marketing, e-commerce and content branding for AOL’s Interactive Marketing group, where he served as Senior Vice President. While CEO of Clearspring Technologies, Marentis developed one of the most widely adopted venture-backed Web 2.0 technology platforms. Marentis is a frequent speaker at local digital marketing conferences and a contributor to SMB and technology-focused publications.

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