"Articles that have relevant and compelling pictures get 94% more views than those that do not." (MDG Advertising infographic)
When I started my blog almost four years ago, I immediately started posting pictures. Our minds remember images much more readily than words. Every one of my posts is accompanied by at least one image. I am not capable of drawing, so I have always found photos, pictures and cartoons on the Internet, copied and pasted them, and then credited the source. I figure it's a good way to catch the reader's attention. To read more about how the brain remembers, visit http://www.mindtools.com/memory.html.
The hippocampus (which is shaped like a seahorse) serves to store our memories courtesy cbucommons.ca.
According to one blogger, pictures play a big role in how readers perceive you. Furthermore, if you don't display your content well, you will lose readers. Your pictures (style, layout) should go hand in hand with your brand (to be discussed in a later post). They may say something clever or hidden about your topic. Pictures should enhance your topic, rather than distract from it. They may encourage conversation about your topic. They often inspire readers to share your post. For more information on the importance of picture choices, visit http://www.blogtyrant.com/blog-images/.
For eye-catching photos, visit www.1stwebdesigner.com.
Beware of a shot that is too abstract; it will ultimately say nothing to the reader. Make sure the images are not too small. Choose pictures that go hand in hand with your topic. Choose images which are relevant not only to you, but to the reader. For instance, I could post a picture of Jumbo the Elephant when referring to my Boston trip. That's because Tufts University, which has Jumbo as its mascot, is located in Boston. However, most readers wouldn't know that. On the other hand, if I post a photo of the Boston Public Gardens, everyone should relate to it. Read more about images here:
Image courtesy blog.blogadda.com.
You have options as to where you find your pictures. You can buy images from Dreamstime. You can use the Photodropper Wordpress Plugin. You can access free photos from Wikimedia Commons or Creative Commons or Stock XChng. You may also use photos in the public domain. For photo editing, check out Gimp. Don't forget to keep all of your images the same size for consistency. Here is a site with some tips about adding photos to your blog: http://www.wikihow.com/Add-Pictures-in-Blogspot.
Photo of the Day at commons.wikimedia.org.
Don't forget to give credit where credit is due! Visit http://www.roniloren.com/blog/2012/7/20/bloggers-beware-you-can-get-sued-for-using-pics-on-your-blog.html for more information on copyright. At the same time, be aware of your own rights as a blogger.
Image courtesy cloudfront.net.
Don't add pictures randomly and create needless clutter. You want your photos to create an emotion in the reader. Ideally, find photos that are "arresting", that pique the reader's interest.You want your reader to be so inspired that he or she shares your post with others. Remember, posts with good pictures get significantly more page views! Visit http://www.mdgadvertising.com/blog/its-all-about-the-images-infographic/.
A blog reader's reaction to an "arresting" photograph courtesy www.inkthemes.com.