Movement in photography & mirroring

Including some movement in photography is a fast way to make a connection with your audience.

Think you know what fires up your followers’ neurons? ⁠

Surprise – you probably don’t know what fires up your own. As suspected, we are not entirely rational. ⠀
⁠⠀
I’m researching neuromarketing for social media. So far I’ve weighed up the psychological impact of colours, fonts, headlines, faces, emojis, humour, surprise and pricing.⁠⠀
⁠⠀
Not much of it is common sense. Apparently we’re all really bad at even knowing what lights up our own brains!⁠⠀
⁠⠀
If you’re interested in this emerging field in marketing, I can give you some “neuromarketing to go” takeaways to help you make deeper connections with your followers.⁠

It’s the digital equivalent of handing them a hot coffee while you chat.
⁠⠀

Our brains process visuals quickly

⁠⠀
⁠About 90% of the information our brains receive is through sight. We process visuals more quickly than any of our other senses.⁠⠀
⁠⠀
Here’s a quick takeaway to create attention-grabbing photographs. Try to include ⁠-⁠⠀

  • movement⁠⠀
  • mirroring⁠⠀

Why movement in photography?⁠⠀

Why are our brains so alert to noticing movement?

movement in photography leading lines neuromarketing

It’s all because our survival instincts mean we favour tracking movement, to assess if it’s a threat. When something moves, we’re wired to notice it.⁠

You can create a sense of movement in photographs using leading lines⁠ that point towards what you want the viewer to see.⁠⠀

The path does it in this pic⁠.⁠⠀

leading lines photography neuromarketing

Leading lines do exactly what the words suggest.

They lead the gaze of the viewer to the point of interest in the photo.

This path provides easy leading lines to direct the viewer’s gaze.

Use motion blur to create movement in photography

You can also edit photos post-production to include motion blur.

This is one of the easiest edits to create in Photoshop. It only takes a few minutes.

All you need to do is create two layers – one with your person in motion and one with your “background”. Just add the motion blur effect to the person. You can choose how strong you want the motion effect to be.

neuromarketing motion blur
Motion blur added in Photoshop to create movement & attract the eye

What’s mirroring in photographs?⁠⠀

The mirror neurons in your brain get busy when you see someone else do something.

Mirror neurons let us live other people’s emotions.⁠ They’re let us get immersed in a film – our mirror neurons fire up as though the action is happening to us.⁠

Mirror neurons are also really important socially. Mirroring is how we learn by imitating others.⁠ They’re presumably also why we yawn when someone else does, and why laughter is contagious.⁠⠀

Using mirroring in photographs


⁠In photographs, use mirroring to show what you want your viewers to do.

mirror neurons neuromarketing photography

So this photo should fire viewers’ mirror neurons to suggest slowing down, relaxing, maybe even stopping the scroll on social …⁠⠀

Fire up your viewers’ mirror neurons by suggesting what you’d like them to do … and relax.

Like these neuromarketing tips on movement in photography?

Read more tips here.

Want to read more about neuromarketing?

Here’s a great book to inspire your interest.

This bestseller, by Nobel-prize winning economist Daniel Kahneman, is often considered the masterpiece on how we make decisions. Fascinating.

You'll like this ...