Keeping Things Visual with Your Social Content

Ciara Macpherson - 27/01/2016 - 5 mins read - Community Management

Are words really necessary?

You know the old saying “A picture is worth a thousand words”, well it turns out someone was onto something there! Studies have shown that using visual mediums on your social channels works wonders for engagement. Upping your visual game can be just what your brand needs to do to be winning in the social space.

There has been a shift in social media over recent years: blogs were the wordy foundation, Facebook and Twitter the micro-blogging middle ground and now we have a complete visual takeover with the likes of Instagram, Tumblr, Pinterest, Periscope and Snapchat. The point is, if you are neglecting this shift, you shouldn’t be.

Let me present the facts to you:

  • Content with relevant images gets 94% more views than content without relevant images.
  • Visual content is more than 40x more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content.
  • Coloured visuals increase people’s willingness to read a piece of content by 80%.
  • 65% of senior marketing executives believe that visual assets (photos, video, illustrations and infographics) are core to how their brand story is communicated.

What does this mean for brands?

As you can see from these impressive statistics, it’s a given that your content should be driven by exciting imagery, videos and share-worthy graphics. Users are more likely to engage with your brand if you have imagery at the forefront of what you are putting online. Don’t focus just on your products or services but think about the brand personality when coming up with content ideas and imagery to go with.

So, it’s time to get your visual content strategy sorted! Let’s begin:

SHOW AND TELL

Don’t tell if you can show! Why would you waste an opportunity to create a really cool piece of content which visualises an idea? Buzzfeed’s 'Tasty' Facebook Channel is a great example of showing rather than telling. This concept can be applied to many different brands (FMCG, cosmetics, cars, etc.). Just let your imagination run free…

Cheese-Stuffed Pizza Pretzels

Posted by Tasty on Thursday, 14 January 2016

ORIGINALITY

Visual social media is all about sharing so give yourself a head start by creating content that is unique to your brand as it will be your message getting out there, not someone else’s. By branding your imagery, you will solidify your social status and your style of content will start to become familiar to those online.

Here at PSONA Social, we create various original graphics for our client base to really make their online content stand-out. Working with Hachette we have utilised our in-house design team to create fun shareable quote images for their craft publications (The Art of Knitting, The Art of Crochet & The Art of Quilting) and also thrown ourselves into the creation of custom memes for Judge Dredd: The Mega Collection.

Some of the best performing memes created by PSONA Social for Judge Dredd: The Mega Collection.

Why not try and really stretch your originality by jumping on the real-time wagon? Real-time social media allows you to put your stamp on what is happening in the world; you gain traction by talking about real-time stories whilst attaching it to your brand. For several examples of this form of social marketing, please have a read of this post written by one of very own community managers, Kirsty.

CROWDSOURCING

By putting a call-out to your community, you can have an abundance of images ready to be re-purposed into content in a matter of moments. User-Generated Content is so important when building an online community as it makes your audience feel valued thus they are more likely to engage with future content. It’s a win-win! Plus as said before, you can keep these sent-in images to post at a later date – handy when things may be a bit quiet on the content front. To make things a bit more interesting, adding some graphic design can really lift the visual. We work with Art Therapy magazine which is Hachette’s offering to the craze of adult colouring and you can see an example of uplifted UGC below:

The background picture on this graphic was coloured and uploaded to Facebook by a fan but added graphic design turns it into an engaging piece of content inviting people to comment why they colour.

TELL YOUR STORY

Showcase your brand story through visuals as they evoke an emotional response more so than plain words. This will connect your audience to the brand. Getting your brand character across via social media can be tricky for some but it’s important to nail. The likes of Club Med UK, a client of ours, have been foraying into this through visuals and it is the way to go.

Using ‘behind the scenes’ photos from your brand comes across as genuine and honest; consumers really appreciate this insight.

WORK WITH WHAT YOU GOT

Stuck on where to begin? Work with what you already have as a brand and think if any of it could be conveyed visually. For example, with Art Therapy, we re-worked some of their magazine content into graphics for Facebook. This is a great starting point to branch out from if you’re stuck for creative thinking time!

10 Minute Mindfulness - from print to social

Well, there you have it, an overview of visual social media. What do you reckon? Could you better your business by being more visual on your online presences? Contact us to kick start a social vision for your brand…

Don’t leave your social strategy blind.

Our senior social strategist, Matthew Marley, wrote a piece on why video should be part of your social strategy so why not give that a read while you’re at it?

Some of our clients

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