How Visuals Can Impact Your Press Release ROI

Portfolio Image

March 22, 2024

By: Michael Iwasaki

The digital age has brought an era where visuals dominate our communication landscape, significantly impacting how we digest information and perceive stories.

In PR and press releases, integrating images is not just a cosmetic enhancement but a critical necessity.

Here, we will delve into the critical importance of including images in press releases, underscored by statistics (everyone loves statistics) and expert opinions.

The Visual Authoritative in Digital Communication
The online battle for attention is fierce in an environment saturated with content and text.

According to HubSpot, videos and images are the top formats marketers rely on, with 50% prioritizing videos and a close 47% favoring images in their strategies. The reason behind this preference is apparent: visuals capture attention faster and more effectively than text alone.

Regarding return on investment (ROI), videos lead at an increased rate, but images follow closely with a significant 12% ROI, highlighting their value in communication strategies.

Venngage's 2021 statistics reveal that over 91% of marketers using visuals include them in over half of their content.

This overwhelming preference for visuals verifies a universal understanding: in the digital age, images are not just an addition; they are essential. Although the articles at HubSpot and Venngage talk about 'marketing,' these numbers are also significant, if not more important, for a press release.

The Press Release Paradox
Despite the proven efficacy of visuals in engaging audiences, a shocking disconnect exists in the press release industry, at least from 24-7 Press Release Newswire observed.

24-7 Press Release Newswire reports a staggering gap between press releases that include visuals and those that do not, with only about 35% incorporating images.

This gap is particularly puzzling given that including an image incurs no additional cost at 24-7 Press Release Newswire, suggesting a missed opportunity for many.

The Power of the Right Image in your Press Release
The type of image included in a press release can significantly influence its impact. Stephanie Belton, co-founder of Loubird PR, emphasizes the importance of human-centric images.

Press releases featuring people tend to attract more attention, making them stand out amid the hundreds of media outlets receive daily. This human element resonates more deeply with audiences, making the content more relatable and engaging, a job anyone wants to accomplish when they send their press to the media.

Moreover, the necessity for high-resolution images cannot be overstated, especially considering the distinct requirements for print (300 ppi) versus web (72 ppi) resolutions.

Providing access to high-quality images enhances the press release's appeal and facilitates journalists' work, increasing the likelihood of the press release being picked up by media outlets.

Visuals as a Non-Negotiable for Media Coverage
The expectation for visuals in media stories has become nearly universal.

Imagining a publication like Sports Illustrated or a cooking magazine without images is inconceivable.

This expectation extends to press releases; those lacking images are frequently disregarded. High-quality, colorful photos capture attention and may determine a press release's priority among journalists.

Enhancing Media Relations and Coverage
In an era where immediate communication is the norm, yet direct contact is diminishing, providing a link to a high-resolution image can make a significant difference.

Journalists operating under tight deadlines and high pressure are unlikely to chase down images. This statement holds particularly true given we live in an age where eight out of ten Americans (according to Pew Research will not answer their phone.

Making their job easier by including high-quality visuals and links to additional resources can substantially increase your press release's chances of being featured.

Image Rights & Permission
Understanding the critical role high-resolution visuals play in enhancing the effectiveness of a press release, it's important to emphasize the need for legal & lawful usage of such images.

Ensuring you possess permission or an appropriate license for image use is not just a formality but a necessity. It's wise to keep records of these licenses, ready to present as proof upon request, protecting you against any potential disputes or inquiries regarding image rights.

In today's technology age, the vigilance of automated bots in monitoring the web for unauthorized use of copyrighted materials cannot be underestimated.

These bots are adept at identifying images used without proper licensing, leading to potential legal challenges and substantial financial penalties, often amounting to thousands of dollars for each infringement.

This stance emphasizes the risks associated with the casual approach of sourcing images directly from search engines by simply right-clicking and saving.

Such practices, although seemingly convenient, are troubled with legal pitfalls. The unauthorized inclusion of copyrighted images in a press release not only jeopardizes the integrity of the release but also exposes the issuer to significant legal and financial liabilities. Hence, it's crucial to adhere strictly to the use of duly authorized images, ensuring compliance with copyright laws and maintaining the professional credibility of your press releases.

The Verdict: Images are Indispensable
Including images in press releases is not a mere cosmetic or 'nice to have' but a strategic necessity that can amplify reach and engagement.

Press releases accompanied by high-quality images, particularly those featuring human elements, stand out and tell a more compelling story. They cater to the visual preference of today's media audience, making the information more accessible and engaging.

In conclusion, integrating visuals into press releases is a practice backed by statistics and expert opinions. It reflects an understanding of current communication trends and the importance of adapting to the visual-centric preferences of modern audiences.

By embracing this approach of including high-quality images in your press release, organizations can significantly increase the impact and reach of their news, ensuring their messages resonate more profoundly with the media and their intended audience.

About the Author

Michael Iwasaki, an expert in the press release service industry, and is a founding partner of 24-7 Press Release Newswire, a press release service that caters to small to mid-sized businesses.

Founded in early 2004, with over 20 years of PR and Press Release experience, Michael has seen nearly a half million press releases go through the 24-7 Press Release Newswire website, including press releases from renowned organizations like NASA, NORAD, and L’oreal.

24-7 Press Release Newswire assists clients by disseminating their press release news to online media, print media, journalists, and bloggers while making their press release available for pickup by search engines and our very own Media Desk for journalists.

Michael is also credited for his exceptional customer service attributes and frequently talks to customers directly when they call our customer service line. Today, customers cannot believe they can reach an actual human when they call into the 24-7 Press Release Newswire office.