Why images are so vital for your marketing & communication

March 28, 2020
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We, humans, are emotional beings. It is encoded deep in our roots and very often we can do absolutely nothing about it – we simply don’t recognize it, and the best way to illustrate this is through the “Elephant and the rider” metaphor.

The elephant represents our emotional thinking, our autopilot behaviour led by our emotions and other external stimuli that we are not aware of.

The rider is our rational thinking, set to navigate that huge elephant.

However, the rider is small and weak in comparison to the elephant and is not always capable of regulating, where the bigger guy decides to go. This metaphor perfectly emphasises what a big part of our thinking and decision making is controlled by our emotions, which then again are affected by the external circumstances that we have so little power to control.

Since we are so influenced by our emotions and external circumstances, visuals have a huge influence on how we feel. Our brain processes images much easier and faster than words.

Neuroscientists have found that the human brain can process entire images that the eye sees in as little as 13 milliseconds.

Quoting Marcel Just, director of the Centre for Cognitive Brain Imaging at Carnegie Mellon University:

“Processing print isn’t something the human brain was built for. The printed word is a human artefact. It’s very convenient and it’s worked very well for us for 5,000 years, but it’s an invention of human beings. By contrast Mother Nature has built into our brain our ability to see the visual world and interpret it. Even the spoken language is much more a given biologically than reading written language.”

The quote perfectly explains, why nowadays

visual content generates 94% more views, and 80% of the text on most websites does not get read.

We are visual animals; therefore, our attention is more directed towards images, pictures, videos and all the visuals our eyes and brain can process. Visuals take the biggest part, when it comes to navigating our “elephant selves” – our emotional selves, our unconscious feelings, decisions and behaviour.

Knowing that people are much more affected by the visuals than text, considering the statistics that on average 80% of the text is not being read – we can see that images are simply vital for all marketing and communication – both online and offline.

Visuals – whether that is photos, illustration, videos, icons or vectors, are necessary in order to keep make your campaigns and websites perform.


this article was written by Agnė Marcinkevičiūtė, Country Manager at JumpStory.