Visual marketing – not just a buzzword, but a powerful storytelling aid that helps build an image for your brand!
Content marketing, traditionally textual, has the single most important aim – to build an image in the minds of your target audience. Then is it not natural for you to be feeding them visual imagery to cut-short the mental processing and hit it right where it should? This is the power of visual marketing and marketers nowadays are delving in more creative ways to be strike a chord with their customers.
Textual stories interspersed with related images are far more powerful. Videos can convey what you want to say more receptively. Infographics are to text what power-point presentations are to word documents. Memes or images with humorous captions are entertainment for the receptors and quirky forms of visual content for the companies.
Show not tell is the mantra!
Visuals are surely the best way to ‘show’ your story! Making sure that you direct your efforts and put your money where it can hit the best requires in-depth planning, understanding what your audience wants (even before they know it themselves) and using data analytics to support your chosen strategy.
Here are a few tips and tricks that can assist you to create impactful visual marketing:
- Old wine in a new bottle -Start with visuals, curate your successful content, the visual way
Pick out the successful content from the past and repackage it in the visual form. That way, you will retread covered ground and gain more traction. Collate feedback, compare the results of original posts and the new visual ones and see the difference! Learn from the data received and then plan the next set of visuals to feed on your social platforms.
- Rummage through your stock of images and pick out the ones that are most striking
You are bound to have a number of images in your data systems. Dig them out. If there was reason you had saved them, there are the most relevant to your business. Create your story around them and pump them out!
- Create appealing visual aids – choose colors, fonts and themes that can be easily related to your brand and products
Select your color palette and brand fonts and stick to them, consistently and persistently! Colors trigger feelings and emotions that you can play around.
- Go off the regular track, look for unusual connections and stories from around the world
A beverage company or an air conditioner manufacturer can for instance share a fact about ice-capped mountains or celebrate the World Polar Bear Day. The connection after all is about the cooling effect!
- Humor is your best aid
Reach out to tickle their funny bones and thus make them shed off their inhibitions. You can drive home a point by innovative use of comic strips, cartoon videos and funny memes. Who said it is easy? But then, you will pat your back when you see the impact!
- Touch their emotions, bring out their visceral reactions
Visuals can spring up great emotions, especially videos. Background music, the tone of the voice being played, the choice of the characters and the story itself needs to have the power to bring out visceral emotions of your audience. You need to be aware of the feeling that your images will evoke to make a strong connection that emanates from the subconscious.
- Know your platforms
A visual apt for one social media platform, may not work for the other. Images that can get cropped at the wrong places on certain tools on mobile screens, or certain platforms may play down on the kind of content that you are sharing (for instance declaring it ‘promotional’). Design your visuals keeping the target platforms in mind and not ‘one-size-fits-all’.
- Target to help, not market
Focus on what your audience will value and how it makes some part of their life simpler. Helpful tips have higher chances to be viewed.
- Keep it simple, really!
Look for intuitive and simple visuals that need least processing by the audience to interpret. What you see is what you get should be the aim. Similarly optimize, reduce the size, the time-to-load and time-to-share!
- Interactive visual content is a great idea
Try asking for feedback or answer to a question (say click one of multiple choices) via a visual content. Interactive videos are great for high engagement. What’s more, you get unadulterated data from the grass-root levels, so its an effective way to conduct surveys!
- Graphics all the way – charts, data visualizations
Back up with your content with data in the form of charts, graphs and the like. These are more believable and validate your claim.
- Maximize screenshots as a sign of proof
Oft overlooked, screenshots captured in your text become visual proofs. Testimonials and product workflows are simplified and shared easily via screenshots. They can be visual verifications of the functionality of your app. In fact, these can be embedded right into your infographics or memes!
Making strong connections is the key. Connect visuals to text, complement stories with graphics, embed videos in texts or share standalone on social media networks. And do not forget to include an easy to share button. After all, the visuals can go viral if they are simple to spread!