5 Reasons Why Visual Storytelling Is Perfect For Any Business Content Marketing
Did you hear about Farina 1709? It’s the world’s oldest perfume factory still in existence and I found about it last week, during my trip to Köln. If you don’t include this place in your tourist circuit or you are unfamiliar with the subject, you can easily miss the Farina Fragrance Museum.
But somehow, in that cold November morning, the steps brought me in front of the most exciting perfumery and nothing from outside allowed me to figure out the surprise I was going to live. Once I stepped in, the story of the world’s oldest perfume surrounded me like a charm. And it’s not just about the fragrance or about the story of this brand.
Mostly, it’s about how they tell the Farina’s business story. Beyond the fragrances, you may find in their shop, all the visuals (packaging, interior design, Facebook page, Twitter account) help in telling their business story.
So, I realized again (if it was still necessary), that regardless of your brand story or the size of your company, the visual storytelling should be part of any business content marketing. And the reason No. 1 is:
Over 2 million blog posts are published on the Internet every day. It seems to be a lot, especially if we are thinking that more than 76% of marketers plan to produce more content in the upcoming years.
So, the main question is: in these circumstances, how could you stand out from the crowd and get the spotlight on your business?
Easy. Use the visual storytelling. Remember, people love stories they can emotionally connect with.
Let’s check some stats about visual content marketing in 2017:
- For 37% of marketers, visual marketing was the most important form of content for their business, second only to blogging (38%).
- 74% of social media marketers use visual assets in their social media marketing, ahead of blogs (68%) and videos (60%).
- When people hear information, they're likely to remember only 10% of that information three days later. However, if a relevant image is paired with that same information, people retained 65% of the information three days later.
- B2C marketers place greater importance on visual content than B2B marketers.
As you see, visual content is considered the most important factor for connecting to the audience, having shareable content, increasing the leads and the ROI.
Excepting the stats, visual storytelling is the best option for any business, because:
1. It helps increase the traffic
For non-marketers, mostly Instagram and Snapchat, but also Twitter and Facebook seem to be just a collection of pictures and videos posted and shared by different people.
Nothing more wrong. In fact, all of them are different ways in which we express feelings, emotions, and experiences. People want and connect with consistent visual stories and social media posts including visuals, deliver 180% greater engagement than just text posts.
Viral campaigns like Murad Osmann’s “Follow Me” made history on Instagram.
And there are millions of people who share stories like this. In fact, Instagram Stories has 250 million users every day, compared with Snapchat’s 173 million daily users. Also, over 800 million unique users visit YouTube each month, while Facebook had 2.07 billion monthly active users in the third quarter of 2017.
No wonder that brands like Starbucks use Instagram for their visual campaigns,
or inbound marketing experts from Hubspot encourage the interaction with their Facebook fans using captivating pictures and limited text.
There’s a massive opportunity for you to stand out from the crowd and drive traffic by creating stories users connect with. All you have to do is create great visual content and make it easy to find.
2. You can convey complex concepts in a simple manner
Sometimes, it could be difficult to convey complex concepts or information to an audience. For example, how do you explain the benefits of using an app that provides all-in-one analytics, helping your customers to understand their web and mobile site visitors?
By using stunning visuals that perfectly complement the text message, you’ll make easier for your prospects or customers to understand your message.
For example, Hotjar uses an extremely simple imagery that tells their business story in such a powerful way that it doesn’t need too many additional explanations.
No need to say that using infographics is the most effective way of showcasing complex statistic data in an elegant and minimalistic approach.
3. Visual stories are not expensive anymore
If a few years ago the images and videos – especially the digital ones – were expensive to produce, the situation has changed now. Sure, you may use a third-party software, but the modern technology makes easier for everyone to create stunning visuals. All you need is some creativity, but you’ll also find a lot of templates that will make the whole process more facile for you.
This means not just the big brands with consistent budgets, but also small and mid-sized businesses can create beautiful animations and images. Here are some tools that will help you do this:
Canva is a tool loaded with enough easy-to-use features and functionality that anyone can create a variety of engaging content. You may use it as your primary online editing tool for creating many types of content – from presentations to infographics, social media posts and so on.
Stencil is one of the most efficient apps to create visuals for social media. It makes ridiculously simple for anyone to create quote images, explainer images, and other popular visual content types.
Visme (https://www.visme.co/) is one intuitive tool for all your visual communication needs. From images to infographics, eBooks and videos, you may use pre-designed templates along with drag-and-drop functionality for creating engaging content to fuel your marketing efforts.
Flixel is a tool for making cinemographs in minutes. It’s simple, beautiful, and costs under $200/year.
With so many tools that can easily create astonishing images and videos, you just can’t afford not to include visual storytelling into your content marketing strategy.
4. Visual storytelling helps you connect with your audience
We are visual beings. According to psychologist Albert Mehrabian, 93% of all communication is nonverbal.
Did you know?
- The human brain processes visual information 60.000 times faster than text alone
- It also remembers images up to 6,5 better than just text
- 40% people respond better to an image than 1.000 words
These are just some of the reasons why people connect better with brands that use visuals in their communication.
But using just imagery is not enough. And here storytelling comes in.
People love stories - in fact, in our whole life, we are surrounded by them. That’s why people love consuming content they connect with. In the Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook and YouTube era, users expect more visual-based content.
Succeeding in marketing now (and beyond) is about visual stories. The most recent statistics show that video content is not just effective, but also has an impressive increasing demand. In fact, by 2019, global consumer Internet video traffic will account for 80 percent of all consumer Internet traffic.
5. Visual content is versatile and customizable
The best thing about all the online communication channels is that they offer multiple options and allow you to talk your prospects and customers in the most native way to a specific platform.
From dimensions to framing to lengths and much more details, you can find the best solution for optimizing your storytelling based on the message you want to convey and the audience you want to reach.
For example, you can use Instagram posts to publish a 1-minute video or an image, then cover the same topic on Facebook, post a 15-second teaser on Twitter, and post images on Pinterest or talk about it to your front-facing camera on Snapchat.
More than ever before, you have the power to shape your message for expressing your true core as a brand through more tools and channels.
Now let’s recap by going over the five reasons visual content is perfect for any business:
- It’s the key for increasing traffic (in 2017 and beyond)
- It helps you convey complex concepts in a simple manner
- Visuals are not expensive and are easy to make
- Visual storytelling helps you connect with your audience
- Visual content is versatile and customizable.
And that’s it! Now, it’s your turn! What do you see as the biggest benefit of visual storytelling? What resonates with you most? Let me know!