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Visual Content: A Powerful Tool for Digital Marketing

Little SuperheroIf you want to churn out great content, make it visual.

The rapid growth of tablets and smartphones, the reduced cost of data, the easy availability of high speed networks, and the appearance and growth of social media networks that focus on visuals has created a fast-growing demand for visual content. Consider this:

  • Pinterest made its debut in May 2011 and grew 1047% by way of unique visitors from 2011 to 2012.
  • Instagram debuted in 2010: Already, it has 130 million users, sees 1 billion "likes" daily, and hosts more than 16 billion photos.

Here are a few reasons why you need to add visuals to your content mix:

Engagement

Remarkable infographics, quality visuals, and interactive videos have vastly raised customer engagement. People have little time or patience to read long text. Make it easy for them to read and enjoy your content by mixing it up with visuals.

Social Media

How well visual content functions on social media is determined by your visuals. Pinterest generated more referral traffic to websites than Google+, YouTube, and LinkedIn combined. And of course, posts on Facebook that have photos get more comments and "likes."

Mobile Usage

More and more people are reading content on their mobile devices. We can safely say that content that’s easy on the eyes – like quality visuals – will be consumed much more than dreary text. People prefer videos, infographics and images. Many millions of Smartphone users stream many hours of videos a month. So you must produce videos to reach out to your reader base.

Links

Good infographics will be shared by your visitors, and good SEO means plenty of quality links. Quality visual content will get those backlinks rolling in.

Traffic

More links, more socializing and more engagement results in greater traffic to your website. If someone watches a great YouTube video he/she will click through on the link to check up the video’s producer. In the same way, Infographics also contribute to traffic.

Conversions

Finally your visual content SEO efforts will lead to the objective you are seeking, more conversions. The links, the traffic and the social signals will act in unison and your business will grow. A website that’s well designed will obviously drive more sales; studies have found out that videos push up onsite time spent and conversions by 9 percent; and as said on KISSmetrics, chances are 64 to 85% better that those who watch product videos will buy your product.

5 Tips for Creating More Engaging Visuals

Controversial Content

Everybody likes drama. Controversial content can get you loads of traffic and inbound links. If you do it well – using a controversial subject from your industry and not doing it for the sake of causing a controversy – it will raise awareness for your brand. Back this content up with supportive arguments and opinions.

Animated GIFs

GIFs are trending again thanks to Tumblr, the blogging platform. These fun animations will be a welcome, visual addition to your content marketing effort. Incorporate animated GIFs on your site as well as landing pages. They will give added quality to your content and make visitors want to keep reading.

Infographics

Infographics are a great type of visual content. If you want to illustrate and put numbers/information on display, then there’s hardly a better way to do it than with infographics. They also work well on visual-based social sites such as Pinterest.

Livestreaming Video

Livestreaming videos serve two purposes. They drive traffic and enhance the quality of your content. Get more out of it by inserting calls-to-action or information about your services and products. Make sure your content is relevant, that it discusses new/interesting data, or presents a unique take on something popular. Create a hashtag to go with your livestreaming video.

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Comics and Cartoons

Cartoons and comics are the kind of content that are fun to create. And they are fun to watch! Importantly, they are great stuff to share on the social media. Great cartoons that relate to persons in your industry will surely get more shares on the social media than regular text updates. Besides, they’ll stay for a longer period on the web and may generate precious traffic and incoming links.

4 Tools for Creating Visual Content Marketing

Canva

Canva will provide the tools you need to create online graphics. You’ll get a vast range of graphics including PowerPoint slides, documents, blog images, infographics, photo collages, Facebook cover pictures and much more. Soon after you sign up in Canva, you can choose an image template and begin to add images as well as copy and use the fonts/styles that are provided or upload your own ones. You can then save your image and upload it to your own pages, or share it on the social media or simply print it out.

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CircleCount

CircleCount helps you track what’s happening on yours and your rivals’ Google+ accounts – and the entire Google+ network. It’s not easy to draw conclusions from basic Google+ numbers and CircleCount helps you make sense of it.

Fanpage Karma

You can utilize this tool to check your action on Twitter and Facebook compared to that of your rivals’, on metrics like fan following, engagement, ratio of followed to followers and growth. In short, this tool helps you to track weekly your social media activity.

ThingLink

You can transform still pictures into immersive ones with this tool. You’ll get graphics that are rich in information and not cluttered with additional copy or links.

The tool enables you to upload your own photo to the creation dashboard. Then you add URLs to provide supplementary information like a landing page for a service/product offer or an embedded video by using ThingLink’s placement icons. Your end product will be your interactive photo with icons strategically placed so that viewers can click to get to your URLs.

People like to see images, pictures, bright infographics and innovative videos rather than the written word. That’s why visual content is marketing’s current trend. However, don’t do content marketing for content marketing’s sake. Your aim must be to give value to your customers. The latter are fed up with the large amounts of content that’s being flung at them day in and day out; they want something different, and if you fail to provide it, they will ignore you. Also, don’t forget mobile marketing or m-commerce which accounted for 15% of the $1.25 trillion online global sales in 2013. Consumers want something new and they want it now.

 

Retailers who make use of big data advantages will snare a larger market share. Additional engagement, with the use of visual content, is making the biggest difference between highly successful and less successful brands. Intelligent algorithms, forecasting platforms, and recommendation engines are separating the winners from the losers. When you combine content and business in a flawless way it results in the consumer getting an experience that’s highly personalized and one that will definitely lead to more conversions.

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