Images are Trending for 2015
Most of the Social Media Trend predictions for 2015 focused on the importance of leveraging images and graphics for content marketing and social media.
We’re bombarded with more and more online information and our attention span is getting shorter and shorter. Unless something grabs our attention at first glance, we’re likely to move onto the next shiny object on our screens.
Did you know that visuals are processed 60,000 times faster than just text?
Of course you did, because your eye was already drawn to the image below and you read it before this sentence. I’m laying bets you probably even read and absorbed this image before you read the opening paragraph!
Canva features social media templates that make it easy for you to create images for all of the social media networks.
It’s one of the most comprehensive tools available. Honestly, if you haven’t already signed up for a free account, you need to do it after you’ve finished reading this article. It’s that good.
What makes it so appealing is that it’s an invaluable tool for non-designers. Canva make it really easy for you to create individual and collage images by providing an endless supply of design templates to use.
All you have to do is import your images and add some text if you need it, and you are automatically a designer.
An alternative to Canva is PicMonkey who also offer editing and design software for free or premium accounts. PicMonkey do have pre-set social media templates to use, but it isn’t as easy to navigate and use as Canva.
BeFunky is an online photo editing tool that doesn’t require users to register for a free account. This website is great for making edits to existing images and adding effects that you can then save and import into the social media image creator of your choice.
Your Book image in the Twitter Stream
Obviously the size of your book’s front cover is different that the optimal Twitter stream image size, but there are multiple approaches for creating your Twitter Stream image.
Full Cover Images
Both of these examples still show the full front-cover image of the book, but it’s embedded on a complimentary background making the image much more distinctive. (Showing the book cover vs. the cover displayed in a mobile device is a simple way of communicating what format your book is available in without spelling it out).
Partial Cover Images
If you add an odd-sized image to your tweet, it’s difficult to predict what part of the image will be visible in the Twitter Stream, and some of the key elements of the image could be cut off. Here’s an example of a full book cover being used on Twitter and only part of the book’s title is visible.
Obviously there is a mystery element to a truncated image, and it may tease your Twitter followers to click on it to reveal the rest of the book cover. But you are taking a gamble that your cover is enticing enough to garner a click-to-expand.
If it isn’t, your audience will scroll right past it without retweeting. The goal is to make it as quick as possible for your audience to retweet your content, and if they know what they’re retweeting they can do it with one-click instead of two.
Two of the most important elements of your image are the book’s title and the author’s name. Together these help to build brand awareness for you and your books, and increase the instant-recognition factor – this is especially important if you write and publish a series of books.
Without any edits to the original artwork, I was able to create a couple of images that are optimised for a Twitter Stream. The one of the left has both author and title, and the right has just the title.
Create a Twitter List
Even if you doubt your design skills, the tools available online make it incredibly easy to create simple and effective social media images.
If you’re lacking inspiration, the best place to look is in your Twitter Feed. You’re probably already following other authors and key players in the self-publishing world, so why not set up a Twitter list to track how others are using images to build their brand and promote their books.
How are you using Twitter images to promote your books?
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How To Use Twitter Stream Images To Promote Your Book by @rovingjay http://goo.gl/7owYeQ