YES! That’s The Best Image For Your Content

Blog Best Image 1.18.18Did you know that 90% of the information our brain processes is visual and it’s processed 60,000 times faster than anything you read?

We’re constantly being bombarded with images. Yet we’re able to process thousands of images because our brains are always trying to figure out what we’re seeing. Recently, neuroscientists at MIT discovered that the human brain can process images the eye sees for as little as 13 milliseconds. That’s even faster than I scroll on Facebook!

But when it comes to remembering, not all images are equal. Some stick in our minds as if they were set with super glue and some just slip out like random thoughts.

Images can Increase Memorability and Sharing — Image memorability is an interesting subject. Well, it is to me since I’m a behaviorist and I find these types of topics fascinating. At this point, you may be thinking that an article about images might bore you to death. But, keep reading … there are some things you should know about images to help you create memorable and sharable social media and content marketing posts.

Emotions Engage — Emotion is the driving force of sharing.

A recent Harvard study evaluated what causes marketing campaigns, and their images, to go viral. Data indicates the most shared emotions are: admiration, interest, amazement and astonishment.

When selecting images, use those that evoke emotions. The more intense the emotion, the more likely we are to remember it.

The best way for your business to engage people and motivate their behavior is by building emotional connections with them.

Make it Relevant! — The images you use must align with your brand. Don’t turn away from your brand guidelines for memorable images that aren’t relevant to your brand or your audience.   Aim to use impactful imagery that stimulates emotions and are contextual to your brand.

Color is Important — The way color is used in an image contributes to the emotions you feel.  A recent study from Georgia Tech examined over 1 million Pinterest images and looked at the color trends between the highest and lowest shared images. The results? Red, purple and pink promote sharing . . . these three colors drive visceral emotions in both men and women.

You’re probably wondering which colors were shared at the lowest spectrum … drum roll, please. The least shared images used green, black, blue and yellow.

Your Content Needs Images! — Using images is a natural way to get people’s attention. It’s the perfect motivating force to encourage sharing. Just make sure the images you select are emotional, contextual to your brand and relevant to your audience.


How to Develop Exceptional Content that Engages Women

Blog Feb 2017 Content 1Women make more than 85% of purchase decisions . . . which translates into a staggering $18 trillion in earnings worldwide for businesses. So, your brand needs women. They’re avid users of social media. But are you sharing exceptional content that really engages women? Here are some tips to help you develop content that will motivate her to want a relationship with your brand.

What Grabs her Attention?

  • Happy Lives — A women’s Highest Personal Value is “establishing and nurturing relationships.” She wants to hear about happy lives!
  • Pop Culture — Engage women with a nod to pop culture. References to TV shows, movies and music trigger engagement, especially on social media
  • Discovery — Women enjoy discovering things . . . about themselves, experiences, places and ideas. Tap into this desire for discovery by sharing tips that will lead her to discovery

Brainstorming Ideas to Engage Women — If your brand is searching for ways to generate content ideas that will engage women, research indicates that the ideas will generally fall into three different groups.

  • The 1st round of brainstorming (usually your 1st 10 ideas)– This group will consist of the most obvious ideas. They’ll be “typical” and won’t usually represent anything new or interesting for women
  • The 2nd round of brainstorming (usually the next 10 ideas) — During the second round, your ideas will start to gain some momentum. You’ll begin to think more creatively and start to generate some actual “new ideas”
  • The 3rd round of brainstorming (usually the next 10 ideas)The final round will represent your best chance at coming up with a unique and innovative idea. During the first 2 rounds, you were able to exhaust the obvious ideas, forcing the new and unique to float to the top

OK . . . now your brainstorming is done. What next? Ever notice that some brands’ content activates a woman’s emotions? That’s because they use power words which engage women.

 What are power words? — A power word . . .

  • Strikes a balance between pretentious sounding words and standard language
    • Women migrate away from people and conversations that are insincere. They want authenticity and transparency
  • Communicates with clarity and precision
    • When women understand what you’re sharing, it helps them to develop a relationship with your brand
  • Enhances engagement effectiveness by invoking emotion
    • Women are driven by emotion. She has 36 emotional outlets in her brain with a lot of interconnectivity. A man has only 4 emotional outlets with very little interconnectivity
  • Studies indicate that conversations and stories which elicit “high stimulation emotions” (anxiety, amusement) are more likely to be shared and go viral than those that don’t elicit any emotion or elicit “low stimulation emotions.”   Power words are key to evoking these “high stimulation emotions.” Examples include words like “instantly,” “mistakes” and “hilarious”
  • Triggers curiosity
    • Research indicates that “curiosity” is one of the most powerful triggers to motivate women to share. Power words that trigger curiosity include words such as “reveals,” “proves“ and “ridiculous.”

To Engage Women through your Brand’s Content — Ask yourself these questions . . .

  • When she sees your content, does she see/hear conversations about happy lives, pop culture and discovery?
    • If not, your brand isn’t grabbing her attention . . . she’ll tune you out
  • When developing content, are you taking the time to brainstorm past the 1st two rounds?
    • If not, you may be sharing what other brands are sharing . . . presenting your brand as a “me too”
  • Are you using power words in your brand’s content?
    • If not, you’re missing the opportunity to emotionally attract and engage women

3 Social Media Tips to Connect with Moms

Blog1photo   Which segment in the U.S. has $2.5 trillion annual purchasing power? Moms–all 85 million of them!  But, engaging moms is becoming more difficult since they’re time-starved and often too busy for traditional print and broadcast media. Plus, moms consider many brand ads irrelevant to their lives because they want to be “connected with,” not “sold to.” How can your brand connect with moms?  Before we address that question, let’s reflect on several insights to inspire your thinking. How Moms Make Brand Decisions According to a recent PunchTab study . . .

  • 66% of Moms view social networks as a source of information
  • 65% of Moms learn about a product or service through social media
  • 64% of Moms read online reviews before making a purchase
  • 56% follow up on product recommendations read on social sites to learn more

How Moms Feel about Brands

  • 73% feel advertisers don’t understand them
  • 60% feel marketers are ignoring their needs
  • 62% would purchase a product if it “added value to my life”

Moms & Social Media OK . . . based upon how moms make brand decisions and how they feel about brands, the logical conclusion is that brands marketing to moms need to have a presence on social media. However, the type of presence you have will either lead to organic sharing and big traffic or being shunned by moms. Here are 3 tips that will help achieve the former and avoid the latter.

  1. Social media is a conversation. Moms have conversations to (a) Share information; (b) Develop connections; and (c) Nurture relationships.  To connect with and engage moms, interact with them on social media. If your brand is only posting brand-generated content and not relating to moms’ lives, they’ll tune you out. Motivate discussions by asking questions and joining conversations. Most importantly, listen! Because of the way women’s brains are wired, they have a keen sense for identifying insincerity.
  1. Social media is not advertising! Women – including moms – make decisions differently than men. When faced with making a decision, a man will take in information and make a decision. This is referred to as “linear decision-making.” Women, on the other hand, will take in information, consider a decision, but then circle back to validate that consideration. This is “circular decision-making.” She’s validating through social media . . . listening to other moms’ opinions about your brand and checking out if you have a mom-friendly community.
  1. Encourage moms to create and post photos. Because of biological and brain wiring differences between men and women, genders see things differently. Without boring you by sharing the minute details, here’s the point . . . women look at images and create a story.   When your social media relies entirely on brand-generated images, you’re missing the opportunity to have moms share stories about your brand with other moms. Ask moms to post pictures of how and why your brand is a part of her life. Conduct photo contests. Once a month, turn your Facebook, Pinterest , Tumblr and Instagram pages over to your mom fans.

Most importantly, in all of your marketing-to-moms efforts, think about her Highest Personal Value of establishing and nurturing relationships. Then, show her how your brand can address this motivational driver.

Fran P4W copyFran Lytle is a behaviorist, brand strategist, author & co-founder of Brand Champs.  Fran develops brand strategy, emotional brand storytelling, content marketing & social media programs that engage people by applying psychology & human and gender-specific behavior.  She specializes in developing & implementing marketing-to-women programs. Contact her at connect with Fran on LinkedIn, Google+ and Twitter.