Why Visual Content Is So Important for Your Content Marketing Strategy

For more than a decade, content marketing has been one of the most popular online marketing strategies. It’s useful for its accessibility, its high return on investment (ROI), and its penchant for long-term development.

Creating visual content

These days, content marketers are increasingly turning their attention to visual content, including photos, videos, and infographics. But what is it that makes visual content so powerful? And how can you harness the power of visual content marketing for your strategy?

What Is Visual Content?

What exactly is visual content? Visual content is any content that can be accessed and absorbed through a visual component. Rather than reading words on a screen or listening to audio, a consumer can simply look at a photo, illustration, or video. These may be standalone (such as infographics), or may be included as other elements of content (such as illustrations within the body of a blog post).

The most common way to develop visual content is with the help of a content marketing agency or a professional designer. For example, you could contact an illustration agency for help putting together visuals for your content.

Why Is Visual Content So Valuable?

What is it that makes visual content so valuable?

  • Digestibility. Human beings are essentially built to process visual information. The human brain can process images more than 60,000 times faster than text-based information, and more than 90 percent of all information transmitted to the brain is visual. That means people find it much easier to access and understand information when presented in a visual format. This should be unsurprising to you; don’t you find it easier to analyze trends when you see data points projected in a graph, compared to merely crunching the numbers?

  • Shareability. Visuals also tend to be much more shareable than other forms of content. A person can attach a photo to a text message or an email and hit send easily, knowing their friend will see and process the image almost immediately. If they send eight paragraphs of written information, they’ll feel like a burden. Accordingly, visual content gets more shares.

  • Lack of competition. Despite the many benefits, visual content remains a secondary preference to written content. It’s harder to put together, so it scares off would-be creators. That means there’s a lack of competition in the visual content production field—which presents you with a perfect opportunity to move in.

  • Staying power. Visual content also has staying power. People have a strong preference for processing information via images and videos, and this is unlikely to go away anytime soon. Comparatively, written blog posts seem out-of-date; in some ways, they seem like a relic of an era where written communication was preferred only because it was easier to download and transmit.

  • Image and video searches. With the help of search optimization techniques, you can create images and videos that are more likely to turn up in searches—whether your target audience is primarily using Google or the search bar of YouTube.

  • Complementary nature. Though visual content is sometimes seen as a more advanced medium, written content has a lot of advantages. You can delve into much more detail, and present more compelling arguments. Together, written and visual content are even more powerful; they complement each other’s strengths, and add to each other’s value.

Visual content creation

Tips for Using Visual Content

If you decide to use visual content as part of your marketing strategy, make sure you follow these tips:

  • Work with professionals. While it’s possible to mock up images and film videos on your own, you’re better off working with a professional. Amateurish content may turn users away.

  • Favor quality over quantity. Don’t try to flood your blog or your social media feeds with new images. Instead, it’s better to focus on quality over quantity; one good image is worth dozens of low-quality ones.

  • Rely on mixed media. Remember, each form of content has its own strengths and weaknesses. Try to rely on mixed media, such as including illustrations in the body of your blog post.

  • Watermark or brand your work. If you plan on making your content go viral, make sure you have a branded reference to yourself. Otherwise, you might not get the visibility you want.

  • Play up the social component. Shareability is a huge advantage of visual content, so make sure you’re sharing your contributions on social media regularly.

If you can effectively harness the power of visual content, your content marketing results can easily multiply. Spend some time developing your visual content strategy from a high level, setting your primary goals and objectives. From there, experiment with different tactics and approaches until you find a combination of techniques that work.

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