Have you tried combining text and visual content together?
Do you know how these two forms of content marketing complement each other?
According to Bob Cargill,
“It’s true. Content may be king, but visuals rule. All the latest studies and statistics suggest that images on social media command more attention than text alone”
Combining visual content with creative, clever and engaging text can be a real marketing force to increase interaction.
Just in case, if you’re new to content marketing, or have not considered playing with images and text, these facts are there just for you:
- Among Twitter users, 40% respond to visual content as compared to written content.
- According to 46.1% internet users, website design is the No. 1 criteria to show the differential advantage of the company
- Content marketers who consistently use infographics in their posts grow their webpage traffic 12% more than the ones who don’t.
- According to Zabisco, the information that is transmitted to the brain comprises of 90% visuals and 10% non-visual.
- A study indicates that presenters can improve their persuasion by 43% with the help of visual aids.
Before moving ahead, it is important to know how you can communicate intelligently by using visual aids. Whether you’re making a presentation, writing a book or creating a blogpost, these things are essential to make it interesting and engaging.
While planning a successful post, it is important to know your audience. The knowledge of your audience determines the depth and complexity of your post. In most of the cases, you need to take your audience from the roots to the top of the tree where your topic lies. They would need more detail and background of the story you’re telling them. At the same time, people with advanced knowledge expect you to provide something new for learning.
In these situations, you can save a lot of words by including visuals at important places and turning points of your post. The visuals also set the tone of your post and they must be aligned with the topic as well. So, plan wisely while adding images in your posts.
Be smart and use your resources wisely. Use stock photos, infographics, charts, videos and other objects wisely. Bob Cargill shows how you can improve brand engagement with the help of different types of visuals.
According to him,
“In the process of optimizing your social media presence with visuals, of course, you need to be mindful of choosing the right sizes and dimensions. Other than those specifications, though, you actually have a lot of great options”
Don’t ignore the following principles:
- Use appropriate colors so that your images look presentable
- While including images, make sure they speak more than words. Use expressive images.
- If you are not able to design images yourself, hire a designer to do it.
- Use multiple types of images, like stock photos, clip-arts, charts, and other formats where needed.
Now, let’s find out how professional marketers and successful companies use visual content for better engagement.
7 Ways to Improve Engagements via Visual Aids
1- Use Images to Illustrate Your Taglines
Do you think you’re doing justice with your brand’s tagline?
How can you make your tagline standout?
Brands normally have text-based taglines to illustrate them. Are all of them getting the best out of these taglines?
Since you’re a content marketer hired for the purpose of brand recognition, you should realize that each update that you write on social media is an opportunity. Your social media updates must show and tell people something about the tagline, if not everything.
Key thing is to stick to your brand and what it offers. It will not only narrow down your ideas but also challenge your creativity. You can find appropriate photos and images to reinforce your taglines, and make them look lively and exciting.
Red Bull’s “Give You Wings” is a great example. The tagline describes the purpose of this drink, but images add life to the words.
Simply measured shows Red Bull’s effective social media strategy, due to which it has been the market leader in energy drinks. The company has over 40 million Facebook fans, over 2 million YouTube subscribers, over 2 million Google+ circles and more than 1.8 million Twitter followers. Only 5% of their posts comprise of images and photos, but deliver 90% engagement on these channels.
2. Use Different Types of Infographics
Are you satisfied with the infographics you’ve been posting?
Are your infographics getting the same engagement like the one you posted earlier?
Do you think your infographic posts are different from your competitors?
Infographic-based posts can deliver up to 180% better engagement than text-based posts. But they should be used smartly. The problem starts when you keep posting similar infographics like your others in your industry. People don’t get stuck to your posts, share them rarely, and eventually you will not see your posts being shared.
In a pro-change environment, you need to keep practicing different kinds of marketing tactics. The least you can expect is – “A Post Gone Waste”, but it will give you experience and exposure to something different which more often turns out to be an advantage.
For instance, take a look at Intel’s TMI infographic which was published in 2013. This concept was relatively new, presenting pictures with concise text to elaborate on the things that should be, and shouldn’t be, shared online.
So, instead of sticking to the basics of infographics, you can introduce something out of the box to grab attention.
3. Add Humor
How boring is your product? Can you add the human perspective to it?
Have you tried bringing the fun-element into your brand?
Brand should be personable, no matter what it is. You can relate to household things, restaurant items, wearable and electronic items more easily, but it is quite difficult with services like accounting, taxation, insurance and banking.
Content marketing in serious industries is more challenging and rewarding than other industries. So, instead of dwelling in complexities, make your task simple – add a human perspective to the business. And what’s better than humor.
Social Media posts play well when humor is involved. People get attracted to it, especially when things are as complicated as learning about tax payables.
H&R Block is one of the finest examples of serious niche with humorous face.
With over 100,000 tax professionals and 50 years of experience, this company could choose to show the real serious image that would lead to boring Facebook page, but chose otherwise.
The company chose to communicate sense of humor with jokes and fun illustrations. Imagine an apparently boring company getting an average of 500 engagements per post.
So, don’t worry if you’re running a boring business. Take social media as a way out by introducing the lighter side of your product. You will see people taking interest in your posts.
4. Show What You Sell
Are you being too statistical in your posts?
Since when have you not used a simple image in your post?
At times, we loose our focus in trying to grab attention and think of bringing something different. In the process, we forget about the main objective of social media, which is to express ourselves.
When you feel you’re running out of ideas to post, take help from images – simple images, and few words. Choose from your stock photos, or anything that you consider near to your brand, add few words to describe it and associate your brand with it – and post. Sometimes, it can be as simple as this!
This simple tactic can be used effectively via Instagram. RiverWalkNola, a downtown outlet at Riverwalk used this tactic with images and descriptions of many items. In a short time, the company grew popular. Now, it has over 3000 Instagram followers.
Don’t forget that you’re on social media to sell your brand. So, why hesitate showing what you sell. You can opt for a simple tactic of sharing images on your brand page and describe what it is, how it benefits others and why you’re selling it.
5. Encourage Visitors
How do you encourage your customers?
Are your traditional ways of encouragement getting you the desired results?
Many product and services businesses also have to deal with the issue of attracting the people in the door. It’s not that restaurants, retail shops, departmental stores, boutiques and massage parlors don’t have to do anything to get customers in their doors. Certain businesses do need special efforts to grab attention – especially when they don’t offer anything more than pictures and sculptors.
Museums, art centers, auction stores and other such places need extra bit of effort to offer fun, excitement and entertainment. What they should do? Improve social media presence.
Brooklyn Museum dealt with this problem by accumulating considerable viral presence on Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
The museum uses social platforms to the fullest by featuring images and videos from its collection. Each account has a caption that gives a context. As a result, it has accumulated more than 100,000 followers on Instagram, more than 520,000 Twitter followers and a strong Facebook profile,
There is no rocket science involved in its content marketing. All you need is to combine beautiful images with facts and additional information to create a strong social response. And you can also use Geo tagging to encourage your followers to pay a visit.
6. Use Text Overlays
How much deep can your product go into the lives of your audience?
How can you relate to your audience’s needs?
Your success depends upon how well you connect with your fans through your posts. It is equally important for you to know and show the people about the depth of your brand.
You can do that with the help of few common phrases normally used by the people to relate to what you sell. For example, a coffee!
Green Mountain Coffee gives a fine example of connecting with their audience. Their technique is simple and effective:
- Take picture of your product
- Come up with a common phrase to relate to the picture
The company uses simple Image + Phrase technique to accumulate hundreds of shares and likes on every post.
This technique will help you go deep down into the lives of the people and find opportunities to connect with them. In this way, you can transform your product from “an ordinary one” to the “useful one”.
7. Encourage Participation
What is your idea of customer participation?
What kind of campaign do you think matters the most for your brand?
User-generated content is a popular way to market a brand. By encouraging your audience to participate, it will be easier for you to highlight that customers are excited to use your product.
REI1440 Project is a fine example of user-generated content marketing. The idea is to encourage fans to post their pictures while having fun outdoors at particular time of the day. Fans are allowed to share their pictures along with the exact time of the day at which the pictures were taken.
The company aimed to share a bigger picture showing 1440 images to illustrate 1440 minutes enjoyed by its fans – something like this:
The response to this project was enormous. The idea of user-generated content showcased brand engagement, created strong community and kept people interested in knowing about the campaign progress.
Do you think you are using all of these ways effectively?
Which one of them do you think suits your brand/product for better engagement?
No matter you have tried all of them before or you are just going to, updates with text and image are the powerful ways to communicate the message and get attention. Business, at the initial stage, needs a strong force to get on the running track so it is better to learn from the trendsetters. Stick to the basics and do it the simple way. That’s what industry leaders teach.
Is there anything left to discuss?
Do you have better ideas to share? Please do