One of my biggest struggle as a writer is finding a way to spin a tale or present an idea that captivates the mind long enough to keep someone reading to the end of my piece. A great way to do this is to captivate the eyes with images. It gives readers a break from all those words and it gives their mind a pleasant distraction that's brief enough to make them happy without getting them off track.
See? See how well that worked? Happy flowers...in a field...making you happy...
Anyway. I've always struggled with finding the right pictures to add to my posts. Flickr is a treasure trove of great photos that are open to fair use via a creative commons license, and iStockPhoto offers pictures at minimal cost, but there's still time and effort involved in finding just the right one.
That's a point Sonia Simone over at CopyBlogger addresses in a great post called "The Lazy Blogger's Guide to Finding Great Post Images."
Some images just make people feel good. And associating yourself with feeling good is a smart move if you're trying to persuade. While a steady diet of kittens and rainbows gets cloying, it can be a good move to choose a photo just because it makes you smile.
What's the personality of your blog? Funny? Combative? Compassionate? Goofy? Imagery can set the emotional tone of a single post or for your whole blog.
Lazy Blogger Tip: If you can't find a good, relevant match for your post's main idea, look for an image that conveys the emotional content of your blog as a whole.
Don't underestimate the power of a great image in a blog post. Especially if a lot of your traffic comes from RSS readers. After all, nothing catches the eye among a sea of text-only posts like a really great image.
Jennifer Laycock is the Editor of Search Engine Guide, the Social Media Faculty Chair for MarketMotive and offers small business social media strategy & consulting. Jennifer enjoys the challenge of finding unique and creative ways to connect with consumers without spending a fortune in marketing dollars. Though she now prefers to work with small businesses, Jennifer’s clients have included companies like Verizon, American Greetings and Highlights for Children.
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