It`s fair to say that the internet in general becoming an ever more visual medium. However this is never more true than when discussing the major social networks. Just consider that:
- Images on Facebook typically get far more engagement than text-only posts
- Twitter now allows you to embed images directly in your Twitter feed and marketers have found that tweets with images experience far more clicks and retweets
- Heavy hitters like Pinterest and Tumblr use almost exclusively image-based content rather than old fashioned text
Best of all, once you get a few basic skills under your belt, creating visual social media resources is both quick and fun - and can be done for free.
In other words, if you haven`t yet embraced the world of sharable images to build your following, increase engagement and build traffic to your website then you`re missing out on some serious traffic that can be highly attracted using just a handful of enjoyable strategies.
A Basic Introduction To Driving Traffic With Images
Probably the simplest and most effective form of images to create for your website are "content title headers". In essence these images constant of an eye-catching photo that closely relates to the subject of your content. Over the top of this image is layered some tempting text - such as the title of your latest blog post or a brief summary of your content.
These images can then be added directly to the top of your blog posts and/or shared directly on the popular social media sites.
The reason that these images work so well is that:
1) They`re very quick and easy to create (when you know how)
2) They`re attractive-enough to make people want to "like", share or retweet them
3) They promise a direct benefit in the form of the headline that encourages your followers to click the image and visit your website for more information
So how do you create these simple images?
Personally I use two simple tools.
Firstly you`re going to need an image for every new blog post or article that you publish from now on. It`s important here to do things by the book and find images that can be legally modified and shared without any possible legal repurcussions.
There are a number of possible sources of royalty-free images - some free and some paid. While I have nothing against free sites, I personally prefer the higher-quality images and wider range I get from paid image sites.
Personally I use Photodune most commonly though I have memebrships at a number of their competitors. If you want to cast your net wider - or use only the free sites -you`ll find that there are loads of websites offering copyright free images you can investigate further.
Secondly you need a graphics editor that will quickly allow you to add attractive text to your chosen image and possibly do some minor editing like cropping to give a final "polished" image.
For this I use a service called PicMonkey. While they do offer a paid version, I find the free version is perfectly acceptable when getting started.
All you do is upload your image to begin. Next select the "text" option in the menu on the left and choose your font face and text size. Then all you do is click on your image where you`d like the text to appear and start typing just like you would an email.
This text can be edited and formatted in pretty much any way you like in order to achieve a satisfactory end result so it`s worth taking some time as you`re getting to know the tool to see what looks visually appealing. By testing out different layouts, and using other people`s images for inspiration (Pinterest is a great resource for this) you`ll find that you get quicker and quicker when producing these images.
When I first started creating them it used to take me half an hour or so to produce one I was happy with. Now that I have more experience and am familiar with the tool it takes me under 5 minutes to create each one - and that`s a small investment in what I`ve found to be a highly effective marketing strategy.
Then simply download the image and upload it to your website and/or social media profiles, ensuring that it links back to the relevant article on your website. Keep producing these images every time you publish new content and over time you`ll see that your follower numbers and referred traffic increases impressively over time.
Richard discovered this strategy by accident when trying to promote his new frugal living blog.