Nine in 10 marketers say that visual content is either quite important or absolutely necessary for their 2019 marketing strategies, a Venngage Marketing Survey found. Why? Because consumer demand for visual content grows every year. They share it more, click through more, and make more purchases when brands are communicating visually.

So if you're looking to engage your audience and you're not yet using visual content--or you're not using it much--the first step is to make your marketing more visual. In 2019, 56 percent of marketers used visuals in almost 100 percent of the content they produced, according to Venngage. This attests to just how essential having lots of quality visual content--not just a video or an infographic here and there--is to staying competitive today.

What types of content do consumer audiences love, and where should you share them? Let's take a quick look at your options.

1. Motion graphics and videos

According to Cisco, 80 percent of all internet traffic will be video in 2020. This fact alone demonstrates the huge popularity of video and motion graphics.

Essential for any successful marketing strategy is to meet your audience on their own terms. And most audiences, across the board, love video.

Just make sure to optimize the videos and motion graphics you create for the platforms where they'll live, and for your target audience's preferences. For instance, while Millennials are more engaged by videos just 10 seconds in length, older audiences between ages 35 and 54 prefer more traditional 30-second ad spots. Favored design styles and formats also vary by audience type and context.

2. Infographics, mini-infographics, and social-media micronarratives

Static content is a powerful tool for capturing and keeping audiences' attention. On social media, try sharing small snippets of information--fascinating graphs, for example--that can stand alone in posts. Use these mini-infographics to drive traffic to full-length infographics living on your site or blog.

A series of bite-sized infographics can form a social-media micronarrative--a series that will keep audiences returning to your page again and again for updates. Just remember, you'll want to share something that's truly valuable and interesting.

For an example of a social-media micronarrative, check out this example from the Numbers2Unite series created by my company, Killer Infographics, for sharing on platforms like Instagram:

3. Interactive infographics and experiences

Interactive content boasts a 70-percent conversion rate, according to Demand Metric. That's because interactive infographics, landing pages, widgets, and more, specialize in personalizing the content to the viewer.

Consider, for instance, the huge popularity of BuzzFeed's quizzes. They're successful because they tell users something about themselves. Whether your interactive infographic is helping people choose which of your products is best for them or teaching them something useful, like what type of loan they might qualify for, interactive content has the potential to offer enormous value.

And because today's consumers love content that feels tailored especially for them, they're more likely to stick around and to return over and over to use your interactive tool. You, meanwhile, are more likely to make a sale.

4. E-books and visual whitepapers

For those members of your audience who want to take a deeper dive into your area of expertise, an e-book or whitepaper may be the perfect fit. But don't make the mistake of sharing something that's all text. Nor should you settle for any graph or chart you can easily generate, without regard for the quality of design.

A well-designed e-book or whitepaper that includes quality graphs, charts, icons, and illustrations every 200 words or so will keep viewers engaged all the way through to the end. After all, most audiences will only read 20 percent of a text that has 600 words or more, according to Nielsen Norman Group. So give them a reading assignment, and they're likely to drop your e-book in the trash before page two.

Great graphs and charts, too, will give them engaging material to share on social media--which will, in turn, drive more traffic to your e-book.

5. Presentations and slideshows

When you're presenting at a conference or hosting a webinar, you need high-quality content that will leave people feeling like they've learned something substantial. 

If your organization values visual communication, you've probably already created some great visual presentations to share internally. Likewise, if you speak at conferences, you may have already produced a few strong visual slideshows. You can repurpose this content not only for platforms like LinkedIn, but for blog posts and social-media assets that drive traffic to your site.

Most successful visual campaigns combine several of the types of visual content I've listed here--many of which are optimized and reformatted for the different platforms where they'll live. For your next marketing campaign, set a clear, measurable goal and identify your target audience(s) to determine which types of visual content will be most effective for your brand.

Published on: Apr 15, 2019
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