Images over words – why it matters on Facebook

An article by  from O2 Media explains why using images rather than words is an advantage especially when using facebook.


A picture tells a thousand words and that saying is never truer than on Facebook.

In a time when people are engaged 24/7 and joined at the hip to their device, it’s crucial to cut through the digital babble if you want to make an impact.

So, how do you do that? Images.

As many a chef will tell you, we “eat with our eyes” and I think this colloquialism applies perfectly to Facebook. A person’s news feed is so cluttered that if you’re a business trying to make your audience sit up and take notice, you need to get your message across quickly and efficiently.

There’s no better way to do that than with a well-designed image or an excellently composed photograph.

A study last year has confirmed the human brain can process an image in as little as 13 milliseconds. Compare that to reading text, when it takes a person on average 1 second per word, you can see the impact a great image can have. Who has time to read, anyway?!?

As a social media manager, I never, ever post on Facebook without an image and most experts agree this is best practice. (There are exceptions to this rule but they are exceptionally rare as far as I’m concerned.)

When we talk about “images”, we mean anything visual – it doesn’t have to be a photograph. Memes, links with an image thumbnail, quotes on a pattern background, logos, graphics or cartoons are all images.

If you’re a café, a jeweller, a florist or a deli you’ll have no shortage of “real photos” to post – your product will speak for itself (as long as the photo is taken well). But if you’re an accountant or lawyer, you really need to think outside the box. People sitting at a computer working on a spreadsheet just isn’t going to cut it, I’m afraid. *yawn*

So, here are my top tips for images on Facebook.

Humourous, stunning, mouth-watering or highly colourful photos are awesome

Some of the highest number of followers on business pages I’ve seen are for business pages for jewellers, patisseries, cake decorators and retail clothes stores – as mentioned, some businesses lend themselves to stunning visuals. (For a couple of local examples, check out Leske’s Jewellers, with more than 16,000 likers, and Colourbomb Jewellery, with more than 6,500 likers.) But if you don’t have a visual product, you can still create awesome images that make an impact. Read on …

Learn basic photography skills

Being able to take great photographs that are well composed and not blurry will not only help your photo composition, it will unleash your creativity. The blogger Fat Mum Slim (link) has some great tips and advice for amateur photographers using social media, but there are plethora of free online resources and tutorials to help – just do a search.

Use the technology at your fingertips

Smart phone cameras will take a really good, high-resolution photo if you know how to use them properly (see point above). Search for online tutorials for your device and arm yourself with knowledge. There are loads of free apps that allow you to add text, filters and other features to photos, create collages or make other types of images – try LiPix, Tadaa, Layout (by Instagram) or any one of the number of free meme makers.

Make words into an image

If you have text you need to post on your page, think meme but without the humour. For instance, if you have a quote you love, use an app to create a simple yet beautifully designed poster with a striking background that you can upload – don’t just type the quote into your status box.

Create a meme

You might not think you’re funny but I bet you are in your own special way! As mentioned, there are heaps of free apps for making memes. (And if you don’t know what a meme is, use your favourite search engine to find out. You’ll probably spend hours laughing your head off, but it’s a really good distraction from work!)

Use free online photo libraries

Just make sure the photo you use is high resolution (this is a term that basically means your image won’t appear fuzzy or really tiny on your computer screen). Here’s a great blog that will give you some tips on where to find free photos –

If you can’t think of a visual, do a search

It really is true – there’s nothing you can’t find on the internet! You might think your words don’t lend themselves to an image, but I bet if you type them into Google, hit enter and then click on the “images” tab at the top, you’ll get something. Try it, I dare you!

Here’s one I tried: “Are you looking for a great marketer?”

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