Is a picture really worth 1,000 words? One could argue yes in the digital marketing landscape today. As data bandwidth increases and the amount of information communicated to consumers daily continues to grow, the challenge marketers face more and more is how their target audience not only prefers content online, but also the speed in which they can process the information.
If you’re a fan of social media (or even if you’re not), you can’t ignore the fact that visual content has long established itself in engaging consumers. And the web is not far behind, integrating more visual content over the last few years. The “pretty pictures” are becoming more of a fundamental tool for marketers today. What used to be considered a competitive advantage for brands cannot be ignored now and in the future. It’s important for marketers to explore opportunities to integrate visual content into their digital marketing plans. And here is why…
1) Information overload
2) Less time to make an impact
You only have 10 seconds to clearly communicate your message if you want to gain a few minutes of your target’s attention.
The majority of website visitors spend less than 15 seconds viewing page content.
3) Improved download speed
4) How our brains process information
Visuals are processed faster because of the evolution of images over 300 million years.
5) Visuals are already a solution
Keep it simple…
A sentence is a collection of symbols which conveys meaning when the symbols are combined.
A traffic sign conveys meaning by utilizing just one symbol.
Logically it takes more time to process multiple symbols, than it does one.
6) Visuals increase understanding
7) Improves website engagement
8) Improves retweet rate
9) Increases shares on Facebook
10) Visuals make your message more believable
Including images with content regardless of its relatability has shown that consumers are more likely to consume that content when it is accompanied with an image versus no image at all.
“Macadamia nuts are in the same evolutionary family as peaches”
As marketers begin to consider their visual content marketing approach within the digital space there are four basic forms that will give their consumers information they want in a way they desire.
1) YouTube – The use of video as a brand marketing tool is becoming bigger and better as brands continue to integrate their messages on YouTube.
2) SlideShare – This is an excellent way to repurpose existing content in a visually inspired presentation and share within a slide hosting environment. This is visual storytelling at its best and a great way for brands to reinvent their key messages in a more compelling manner for consumers.
3) Infographics – The use of infographics is an excellent way to present data-rich content quickly and clearly. With infographics, brands can communicate facts and statistics to their target audience in a fun and creative way that is more consumable than heavy text. Not only are these visual pieces of content a better way to communicate, but they are a great way for your brand’s content to be easily shared.
4) Memes – It is hard to not see a meme on social media today. These humorous images or videos spread rapidly and continue to be a tactic consumers engage with consistently.
Although these forms of visual content are not new, the approach brands utilize them in in the future will evolve as brands begin to integrate visual content more into their marketing activities. Visual content is a great way to creatively communicate key information to your target audience as well as reinvigorate content that may already exist.
Need more convincing? Check out this interactive infographic, 13 Reasons Why Your Brain Craves Infographics.
Sources: http://neomam.com/blog/13reasons/, http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/visual-content-marketing-strategy, http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/2015/01/visual-content-mistakes-to-avoid/