Is a picture truly worth a thousand words? It is if you pay attention to statistics relating to visual content and online marketing. The marketing world is changing, due in large part to the proliferation of social media as the primary online communication platform, requiring marketers to adapt the way they do things to accommodate the way people receive and utilise information.
In short, visual content that wins at marketing is content that is specifically geared to take advantage of the way people receive information. It is content that plays well with sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. Any marketer not taking advantage of the most used social media platforms is not doing his or her job as well as it could be done.
Social Media Is the Place to Start
Adopting a strategy of visual content marketing begins with understanding social media. Like it or not, social media is THE platform to drive successful marketing in 2016. Need proof? Consider this: some 66% of all social media posts include images. Some of those images are photographs; others are computer-generated memes.
Here are some other statistics to consider:
- 63% of all social media content is made up of images
- 66% of all social media updates include visual content
- 50% of all internet users have repostedvisual content online
- 54% of all internet users have posted original visual content online.
One of the fundamental laws of business is the law of supply and demand. The mere fact that more than 60% of all social media content is visual in nature demonstrates that there must be a demand for it. That demand only continues to grow as social media expands.
The Power of Video
Video has become a powerful marketing tool across a number of platforms. In social media, posts with videos are more likely to generate views than content without video. There is a reason the phrase ‘viral video’ is now part of the English vernacular. Producing a viral video can easily catapult marketing efforts into the virtual stratosphere.
Targeted e-mail also benefits from embedded video as well. Statistics show that simply including the word ‘video’ increases open rates. Including video links increase click-through rates and decrease unsubscribing decisions.
Why is video so effective as a marketing tool?
Because it reaches a target audience that has grown up on visual technology. Our parents and grandparents learned to glean information from reading books, newspapers, magazines and other materials. Accordingly, the marketing efforts of past generations focused on catchy slogans and finely crafted textual presentations. Those things do not work in the modern era.
Since the introduction of the video recorder and personal computer in the 1980s, we have been developing an audience of consumers that process information best when it is presented visually. Video takes advantage of that by presenting information in a format that users can easily digest in the process of making decisions.
The Power of Colour
It is interesting to note the role colour plays in visual content marketing. Marketing experts have long known that certain colours evoke particular kinds of responses, but incorporating that knowledge into visual content has been slow. Marketers now paying attention to colour are reaping the rewards of doing so.
Research from Xerox indicates that the use of colour in visual content increases a person’s willingness to read textual content by some 80% percent. Colour also increases attention span and improves memory. This is why safety notices in the workplace tend to take advantage of strategically placed colour that helps people remember what they have read.
Visual content that wins at marketing utilises colour to its advantage. This can be done through HD quality photography, well-designed graphics, and combining both media with the right kind of text to grab the attention.
The Power of the Infographic
Visual content does not have to be a photograph, meme, or video to succeed. In fact, one of the hottest formats for visual content right now is the infographic. The infographic combines well-designed graphics with bullet point information to present the reader with some sort of relevant data that can be absorbed and used right away.
How powerful is the infographic?
Very powerful, indeed. Statistics suggest that infographics are shared on social media three times more than any other kind of visual content. Infographics combine the three things that trigger the best responses from readers: colour, visual representation of data, and relevant information.
It is clear that the text-based marketing of days gone by is no longer effective in the digital world. It is also clear that social media is the single biggest platform available to marketers. Therefore, it only makes sense that the most successful marketers are utilising visual content and social media to their advantage. Combining the two creates a dynamic marketing force that can mean the difference between success and failure.