We've alllll been there before. You know how important visual content is. You're on a tight deadline. You have an abstract concept that you need to convey. You're hunting through pages and pages of stock photos and searching every term that is somewhat related to your project on the Creative Commons site in hopes of finding that perfect photo and ... nothing.
Sometimes, stock photos aren't the answer to communicate your visual concepts. Sometimes, you need something a little more abstract and ... icony.
To help you keep your marketing content in tip-top visual shape, we've released a brand new download: 135 free icons you can use any time, any place in your marketing. No attribution needed. Just download the files, resize and recolor the icons to fit your needs, and they'll be ready for use the next time you're in a visual content bind.
Still not convinced that you can use these icons? Think again. With lots of different types -- social networks, general household items, health objects, shopping items, and manufacturing symbols -- these icons can be used in lots of places you wouldn't think.
If you need some inspiration, keep reading! We'll walk you through 10 different ways you can use these icons in your marketing.
10 Creative Ways You Can Use These Icons
1) Social Sharing Buttons in an Ebook
You've put all the time and effort into creating an ebook, so obviously, you want your readers to love it and share it with their friends! Create custom social sharing buttons to sit at the bottom of each page so your readers can share it from wherever they are in your ebook.
Bonus tip: Use the complementary color of the main color in your color scheme to make the social sharing buttons stand out from the rest of the page.
2) Blog Featured Image
See that gorgeous image in the top right of this blog post? That's an enlarged icon. Icons for blog post featured images work best if they help convey a concept that can't be captured in a photograph. For example, a blog post about marketing analytics -- you're not going to take a picture of a computer screen to show what analytics are. Instead, use an icon of a graph or something similar. It'll look more professional and clean-cut, all without you having to hack together anything weird in PowerPoint.
3) Landing Page Forms
On a landing page, your one and only job is to get a visitor to convert into a lead. But that process can get mucked up when your visitors feel anxiety about giving you their information. Quell their anxiety by offering privacy seals and security indicators -- both of which can be made with icons. Pretty nifty, eh?
4) Landing Page Promotional Images
Like you would in a blog post, conveying abstract images on landing pages can be best done with an icon. We did this recently for our free blog editorial calendar. No one would know what an editorial calendar is unless we showed them, but a screenshot of an Excel document wouldn't exactly have conveyed how cool this offer is. Instead, we used icons of a calendar, a magnifying glass, a pencil, and a notebook to show the components of the editorial calendar template on the landing page.
5) Email Calls-to-Action
When you're doing email marketing, you want your email subscribers to do one thing: click on your call-to-action. And when there's a lot of distracting elements in an email, they'll be less likely to do that. If you want to draw even more attention to your call-to-action button, try adding an icon to it. Since visuals are processed 60,000x faster in the brain than text, according to 3M Corporation and Zabisco, your subscribers will realize what you want them to do even faster than with words alone.
6) Abstract Elements in Ebooks and Whitepapers
In ebooks and whitepapers, you have much more space to explain your concepts than the average blog post. But that doesn't mean you should be typing pages and pages of text to convey your concepts. HubSpot will often use icons in our ebooks -- it's a great way to explain a concept further or even just spruce up a text-heavy way.
7) Infographic Data
It sounds like a no-brainer, but to have a successful infographic, it needs to include graphics. Enter our free icons -- use them to act out a proportion or statistic or just add them as a visual flair to a rock-solid fact.
8) Your Website's Navigation Bar
Icons are also great to use in places where you have limited space for text, like your website's navigation bar. For example, If you're not sure that your website visitors will realize what a VoIP service is, you should probably include an icon of a telephone. Again, with limited space to communicate a message, icons are the perfect visual element to use.
9) Your Website's Footer
When people arrive at your website, they look at two different places for your social media network connection buttons: right at the top of the page and alllll the way at the bottom. If you want to promote your company's social media accounts in your footer, download the social media icons and insert them there. That way, you'll have one more piece of your marketing collateral pointing to your social media accounts, which'll help you bring in a few new followers without sharing a thing.
10) Your Next Presentation
Gotta impress the boss during your next monthly marketing meeting with a presentation? You can spruce up your PowerPoint with these little icons -- they'll impress your boss so much that he or she will wonder if you're taking design courses on the side. And who doesn't want to impress the boss?
Ready to iconify your marketing? Download our set of 135 fully-customizable icons here.