Did you know that about 65% of the most successful content marketing brands had a documented content marketing strategy? It helps teams align their efforts towards reaching a common goal.
While content comes in many forms, visual content, in particular, has caught the fancy of marketers recently. As many as 64% of marketers increased their audiovisual content, while 56% of them increased their images and infographics.
The main reason for this is the high level of engagement that you can get with such content. For instance, videos can generate 1200% more shares compared to images and text.
To help you craft your very own visual content marketing strategy, I have with me, Kevan Lee. He is the VP of Marketing at Buffer, a powerful social media management tool used by 3 million agencies, brands, publishers, and individuals. He also serves as an advisor at Leap Studios.
Visual content strategy has three major elements that need to be addressed. They are branding, distribution platform, and the content type.
Here’s how you can craft the perfect visual marketing strategy through them:
Branding is crucial for marketing your business, and it cannot be achieved without the use of visual content. It incorporates all of the factors related to your brand’s colors, name, font, logo, etc. Whenever you create a visual content strategy, you need to define each of these factors.
You should consider creating a small manual that elaborates the various visual elements associated with your brand. These include the colors, font, logo, and more. When it's outlined clearly, it will help you keep your branding consistent across all channels.
When there’s consistency in your visual content, people will recognize your brand even if your brand’s name isn’t mentioned.
For instance, Help Scout has got their visual content strategy bang-on. If you visit their blog, you’ll notice the consistency in all of their images. They’ve ensured that their logo is clearly visible to their followers on social media as it’s their display picture.
Image via Facebook
Similarly, whenever they share a blog post on their social media account, they allow the link preview to load, which then shows the featured image.
The featured images have a fixed set of colors and type of graphics in them to make the brand easily recognizable.
When you’re coming up with unique and informative content, you need to have a distribution plan ready for it. Without distributing it, you won’t be able to get it in front of many eyeballs. For this, you need to select the right visual content distribution platforms.
While we have a plethora of options to choose from when it comes to social media platforms, there are some that fare better than others.
For instance, Pinterest is solely dedicated to images, and Instagram features both images and videos. This makes them prime choices for the distribution of your images. However, if you’re creating videos, perhaps YouTube is the way ahead.
However, social media channels aren’t the only modes of distribution. You can also distribute content through blogs, newsletters, forums, and more.
Analyze the kind of visuals you’re developing and then decide whether they fit the context of the distribution channel. Based on this, you can then zero in on one or two distribution channels where you can put impetus to promote your brand.
For example, Diageo came up with an innovative way to promote their Scottish whiskey. They partnered with Nick Offerman and came up with numerous videos related to the whiskey. Out of these, one of the most famous ones was his “Yule Log” which managed to get over 3.6 million views on YouTube.
Image via YouTube
3. Visual Content Type
The type of visual content that you use to promote your brand matters just as much as your brand and the distribution channel. To decide on the type of visual content, you need to first ask yourself what you want to get your viewers to do after that. For example, if you have an infographic, you may want them to share it or embed it on their websites.
Be specific about what you want to accomplish with the visual content. This will help you decide upon the type of visual content that you should create.
It is also important to determine the frequency of coming up with visual content. This is because videos and infographics may take a longer time to prepare compared to images.
However, this still doesn’t get you to the final answer. Remember, you’re creating the visual content for your audience and not for yourself. Think about their likes and dislikes.
Find out what type of content they like to consume and create exactly what they want. Some of them may want to watch educational videos, while others may prefer simple images. In the end, you need to catch their attention.
For instance, Moz comes up with informative Whiteboard Friday videos. These are perfectly targeted to their audience, who loves to learn about everything related to SEO.
Image via YouTube
In these videos, Rand Fishkin explains different strategies step-by-step and educates his target audience. This is perhaps the reason why these videos are so popular and earn him thousands of views.
In addition to these factors, you need to also have a clear goal in mind. Without an objective, you won’t be able to focus on reaching it. The goal can be anything such as increasing engagement, website visits, or even getting more sales.
It is also necessary to measure the success of your campaign with respect to your goal. This will help you figure out what is working for you and what isn’t. Based on this, you’ll be able to optimize your strategy.
A visual content marketing strategy is critical to the success of your brand. Without visuals, your blog posts would be dry, and so would your social media profiles. You must get your branding right and have it planned clearly. But it is also necessary to decide upon the type of content that you want to create and its distribution channels.
What are the other factors that you think need to be considered while developing a visual content strategy? Let me know in the comments.
Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant who specializes in influencer marketing, product launches, sales funnels, targeted traffic, and website conversions. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.