If I told you there was one little change you could make on your site to build audience, would you want to do it?
You would want to implement it right away, correct?
Yeah, me too.
Listen. I’m no blogging guru, but you know what? I don’t trust those guys anyway.
I do have 20 years of experience in branding and design, and if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that little tricks make all the difference.
So, I imagine you would like to learn and implement this stuff, huh?
Well, please read on.
This is about understanding the subtle nuances that guide the eye, then using this knowledge to help grow your audience.
There once was an über group of German psychologists who developed a term called Gestalt, which basically translates to “unified whole.”
It’s one of those graphic design 101 principals the wizards at Design U. usually teach.
There are a group of principles, but today you’ll be introduced to one. But it’s bang-on and so easy to put into use.
These theories describe how peeps (read: your potential customers) often organize visual elements into groups. And applying just one of these principals can help you in many ways.
Draw your reader’s eyes to the sweet spot.
Continuation (Continuity). You’ve heard those terms before, right? Uh-huh. But now think about Continuation in the context of one simple design element on your page.
If someone is looking at a part of your site and their eyeballs are guided from one object to the next, well bammo, that’s continuation.
Those lively eyes are compelled to move.
Some even call it Good Continuation, but it still means the same thing: If two or more thingamajigs intersect, most good citizens perceive one, if there is good continuity of course.
In other words, elements are seen as a whole if they follow a direction. Think about a pattern appearing to continue, even if it doesn’t.
Do you see how continuity is a more powerful guide than color?
Eyeballs will follow a pattern if shown the way.
And you can implement this little practice right away.
Think about photos.
Now go back through my posts and take a look at the shots I’ve used.
Do you see a pattern?
In many cases, the model’s glance guides your eyes to a headline or the opening sentence of a post.
Now look at the image at the top of this post
It’s so “marketing 101,” but it works.
And even if there isn’t a face, I still use direction to guide the eyes. In this post, I “flipped” the shot horizontally so the nasty snake and delicate hand both guide the eyes to the opening.
Take a look at the flame here.
This isn’t Gestalt perfected, but you get the picture. I don’t use this method all the time, but it is a good practice to get into.
I also use continuation at the top of my right sidebar. A simple, but effective arrow works and helps bring in a few subscribers.
Take a look here and see where the chimp guides your eyeballs.
Or here. Chris Garrett does a great job with his opt-in, dead-center and a subtle use of arrows.
Now go back and look at my images again, just for fun
So, what are you going to do?
If you’re willing to burn the midnight oil writing that killer post, why not spend a bit more time looking for “that” image or simply edit a shot to make it work for you?
A subtle design change using this principle might make all the difference in the world.
Oh, and talk about continuity … this is a series, so stay tuned, or better yet, just subscribe.
I’ll still be motivating, but this place is going to be more about helping you grow your business through branding, design, the psychology of design and story.
Have you used this law in your design?
How have you used images on your blog?
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