Visual marketing strategies play an integral role in just about every great PR effort these days. If you don’t know this by now, you are missing out on enormous opportunities for your brand and falling behind in the rapidly progressing world of new media. Not to worry, though, accepting the importance of well-planned visual marketing strategies is the first step in recovering your brand’s footing. Learning how to properly embrace and apply visual communications will help you become a stronger contender.
What is Visual Marketing?
Quickly, let’s review what we mean by “visual marketing.” Hardly a new concept, visual marketing and visual communications relate to using images and video content to advertise a business, event or brand. In new media terms, visual marketing strategies tend to include gifs, memes and live streaming applications as much as they do infographics, guestographics and traditional video and photographic imagery. Largely, visual marketing goes beyond simply informing your audience, but is used to also drive traffic to your web properties in order to secure regular consumers.
Social Media and Short-Form Content Rules the Day
We live in a world where every thought is a potential tweet and Facebook is as important a business tool as your client’s website or brick-and-mortar location. And even the most unlikely businesses, organizations and brands are making a splash on Pinterest. Once merely a tool for individuals to chat about common interests online, social media has grown to become a significant communication vehicle for celebrities, governments and businesses of every size. Increasingly, PR professionals are including social media campaigns in their services and clients are including this powerful medium in their advertising budgets.
One recent B2B marketing study reveals video as being one of the most frequently leveraged types of content. Among B2B buyers, most prefer short, visual and mobile content above all else. With so much to digest in this fast-moving world of news, information and advertising, a picture is now officially worth far more than 1,000 words.
Visual Marketing Strategies Increase Engagement
Used globally, creatives have to be, well, creative about obtaining a marketing edge on competitors. As anyone successful in this space will tell you, visual communication is crucial in social media marketing and both work hand-in-hand with traditional media tools. In most instances, visual marketing strategies garner the most engagement and are precisely what should be used just about every PR effort.
I once heard visual marketing in social media compared to observing a big city through the windows of a speeding train– there is much to take in and one will become overwhelmed in trying to make note of everything seen. However, strategic billboards automatically attract a passenger’s attention and will likely become the most memorable visual markers she observes during her journey. This is precisely how visual marketing works in social media. With so much content speeding by, creative visuals are what stand out the most.
What’s Your Story?
We all know that every picture tells a story. And no truer words were ever spoken as this adage applies to today’s marketing and PR. The question we all have to ask ourselves now is: if we’re not heavily employing visual marketing strategies for our clients, what stories are we really telling and are they even being heard at all?
By Laura S.