Visual marketing - creating engaging content
If you've been following the latest marketing trends, you've probably run into visual marketing. Along with web stories, they are the increasingly useful form of content that stands to help marketing managers like written content rarely could. But, as it is with all content, not all visual content is equal. Even now we can easily make a distinction between subpar and well-made pieces of visual content. With this in mind, we will give you a couple of guidelines on how to create engaging content for your marketing campaign.
Understanding visual marketing
Since we've already covered the basics of visual marketing in a different article, we won't go into much depth here. Instead, we will only give you the necessary info for you to understand the rest of the article.
Visual marketing simply means using visual content for marketing purposes. This includes images, videos, comics, infographic, various story content, and any other type of content that put emphasis on the visual aspect. The main potential of visual content lies in the fact that images can be far more engaging than mere words.
Once you view a well-made image, you take all of it in within seconds. Meanwhile, in order to absorb written content, you need to spend some time reading it. And expecting your customers to have the will and or the interest to give you that time, is hopeful, to say the least. This is one of the reasons why modern marketing managers rely more and more on visual content and stray away from the run of the mill practices.
Creating engaging visual content
Before we start, it is important to mention that creating visual content is no simple task. Graphic designers and artists spend years learning how to create images that are stimulating, sophisticated and properly toned. Therefore, don't expect that a single article will make a pro visual designer out of you. Instead, use the following guidelines as a stepping stone for further development. Now, more than ever, it is fairly easy to either learn the basics of visual design or hire a professional for a relatively low cost. So, if you do plan on tackling visual marketing, try to do so with due care and attention.
Understand your brand
Since visual marketing is still marketing, it only makes sense that you need to understand your brand in order to tackle it. To properly promote your company you need to develop brand awareness. The best way to do so is to infuse your brand with all of your visual content. Everything, from images to videos and web stories should have your brand woven into it. Good designers know how to incorporate a brand into visual content without it being too pushy or stimulating.
Picking the right format
If you take a closer look you will see that there are almost a dozen different formats of visual content. Apart from the ones we've mentioned, you also have presentations, memes and quotes... And, as you can probably guess, you shouldn't try to utilize all of them. Creating visual content is usually more expensive than creating written content. So, if your investment is going to be worthwhile, you need to focus on a single content format.
Here, again, we suggest that you consider your brand and see which format works best. If you are creative enough, you can theoretically pair any brand with any format. But, we suggest that you start with one and become proficient in it before you start experimenting with others. A good rule of thumb is to first consider simpler formats. Formats like images and web stories are easier to create and experiment with. So, if you are not sure how your brand will work with visual content, start with those.
Know what you want to stay
The good thing about written content is that you have plenty of room to elaborate on your ideas. A single blog post can mention various subjects, go over different ideas and come to a multifaceted conclusion. Visual content, on the other hand, needs to be direct and clear. With visual content, you seldom have the necessary room to elaborate on an idea. Therefore, being vague or too broad can come back to bite you. Instead, try to decide on clear, short messages and figure out how to visually convey them.
Of course, visual content doesn't always have to be short. In fact, infographics and explanatory videos can be quite lengthy when it comes to size and can contain a ton of information. But, before you set out on making them, practise condensing your messages to a clear and short message. If you understand the current average attention span, and its implications you will know why it is useful to first focus on shorter content. Short and sweet is a mindset that pays dividends with visual content and is something you ought to incorporate as soon as possible.
Understand the emotions behind your message
All well-made visual content invokes some kind of emotion within us. We can be cheered up by colourful designs. Or we can be amazed by the little details that the artist incorporated. Throughout videos can easily bring tears to our eyes. Or have us melting from seeing something cute. The point is that incorporating emotion in visual marketing is a tried and tested method, and is something that you should make use of. Unfortunately, this is one of the hardest aspects of visual design to tackle properly as it requires a fair bit of experience and finesse.
While we believe that visual marketing is only going to become more present in the coming years, we don't think that it will overtake standard marketing. All types of marketing, be it social media, email marketing, SEO management or visual marketing have a role to play. Your job is to determine how big of a role those aspects will play in your campaign.