Made you look!

Kids love the old, “Made you look” game but as a marketer, so do I. I remember back when I was developing a website that was intended to provide thousands of animal-related articles for the purpose of generating advertising revenue. I was basically building a great site so readers would click on the ads in the content and I’d get paid for each click. I was using Google Ads and wanted to create a site that encouraged people to click on the ads because that’s how I got paid.   But, according to the terms of service with Google, I was forbidden to use anything to encourage people to click on the ads, like the words, “click here” or even something like a flashing arrow pointing to the ads. However, I was allowed to naturally draw the readers’ eye to the ads as long as I didn’t use the aforementioned tactics.

That’s why I employed a technique called “line of sight.” Basically, if there’s a photo of a dog and he’s looking down, the reader also tends to look down to see what he’s looking at. I filled the site with animal photos, all of which were looking directly at the ads I wanted people to see and click on. A parrot looking up. A cat looking to the left.   And boy did it work. We made thousands of dollars, one penny at a time, as readers clicked on the ads.

Next time you’re considering which photo to put in your marketing materials, consider where the subject is looking.   If they’re looking at the headline for instance, the reader will likely glance at the image first, because photos grab attention first, and then your readers will look at the headline, because the line of site, or where your subject is gazing, made them look there. On the other hand, if your subject is looking out of your ad, off the page, you just might lose your reader as they look to the next page and go on to read someone else’s ad. Hope that helps.

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