Humans are built to process visual content quickly for survival. Instinctively we react to what we see. Before we can describe it with words – we’ve already decided if we like it or not.
The picture above was processed by your subconscious in a fraction of a second. You decided it’s a friendly-looking person. Your brain fired off a few neurons and created some dopamine. This put you into a slightly happier frame of mind and helped get you this far.
Sadly the initial effect is now wearing off. By now some readers have decided that this was just an obvious bit of pop psychology, and doesn’t really work on people like them… 🙂
NOTE: You can only get so far with just a good-looking photo and a smile. A good copywriter is worth their fee. Text works with the imagery to encourage the reader.
What’s The Point? / TLDR
Use images or videos to set the scene and generate interest. Subconsciously the person will decide if they like your image, and it will help influence whether or not they decide to continue reading.
Choose images that align with your audience. Whenever possible, choose images that align with the topic at hand or the action you want them to take. The right images will resonate with your reader and help get your message across in a positive way.
“Our brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text and retains 80 percent of what we see versus just 20 percent of what we read.” (1)
“…half of the human brain is devoted directly or indirectly to vision…” (2)