Rule #14: Every Picture Demands a Caption
Using pictures is a good idea. Pictures serve as another visual "hook" to liven up the ad and attract the reader.
Pictures are better than drawings. Leave drawing to the impressionist artists in museums. Even if you're selling such a drawing, it is better to run a picture of it.
Every picture should be appropriate for the product. A pretty girl draped over a car will get a lot of attention -- but are you in the business of selling cars or ... what...?
Chances are, the people who are attracted by the "what" aren't in the market for a car.
Like drop letters, pictures will increase the readership of the ad- (just like headlines); more people will look at the picture than read the ad…
Like subheads, a picture is an additional opportunity to sell. Use it. You've grabbed a reader's attention- while you've got it; do what you can to keep that attention.
When someone sees a picture by itself, they're likely to say to themselves: "That's an interesting picture: what does it mean?”
Explain with a caption.
How many magazines run pictures without captions? Don't you get frustrated when you see an interesting picture - and no caption? Or when some "clever" designer has put the caption at the top of the opposite page instead of where it should be: right underneath the picture.)
When people see a picture they look for the caption. Satisfy their expectations and make sure you take advantage of another opportunity to sell, and to entice those extra people to read the rest of your advertisement.