Visual Content: How to Re-imagine Your Brand

5 Visual Content Marketing Tips [With Examples]

Take my photo Visual content is a guaranteed winner for marketers because it’s a people magnet.

Visual representations can simplify complex information in a way that attracts attention, is easy-to-consume and minimizes language barriers. As a marketer, seek opportunities where you can integrate your brand into images to achieve your business objectives.

Here are five ways to rethink your brand by incorporating it into your graphics and photos to attract attention.

1. Demonstrate how your product works

Images can explain how to use your product’s features faster than a page of text. Further, your images provide clues that help customers see your product in context. This helps you sell without being salesy.

Actionable Content Marketing Tactic:

  • Employ a photograph or series of images to show your offering in context. For many customers, this is more helpful than seeing your product in a store or showroom because it helps them visualize how to use it.

Examples:

  • Louis E. Page, a distributor of mesh and fencing, uses photographs in their blog posts to show prospects how to use their products effectively.  How to photograph used in company blog post
  • Rubbermaid leverages the power of Flickr to show how to use their products. They allow people to use their images if they link back to Rubbermaid’s website. (BTW-This is another way to get your product viewed and build backlinks to your content.)  Rubbermaid Organizes closet on Flickr

2. Skip the words

There are times when a photograph or image can quickly convey complex information to your audience. Consider using infographics to simplify difficult concepts and make them easier to grasp. Realize that not everyone takes in information the same way.

Actionable Content Marketing  Tactic:

  • Create easy-to-understand images. Think in terms of infographics, charts and presentations.
  • Offer related product information in graphic format. Many businesses do this with infographics and other types of research charts to make a visual case for their product.
  • Leverage image oriented sites. Post visual content on Facebook, Flickr, Google+ Pinterest and Tumblr.

Examples:

  • IBM uses infographics to simplify the concepts behind “Big Data” and shares them on Pinterest.  IBM uses phootgraphs and infographics to illustrate the power of Big Data on Pinterest
  • Patagonia used a map to illustrate where their products are manufactured and how they’ve environmentally conscious.  Patagonia uses image of world map to show where their products are sourced and manufactured

3. Tell your story

Add a human element to your content.  Show people using your products in action. Go a step further and incorporate a story that your audience can relate to emotionally.

Actionable Content Marketing Tactic:

  • Encourage employees to tell their product-related stories. Forget the once-upon-a-time. Tell real-life adventures.
  • Enable customers to discuss your offering. Use a combination of photographs and text.
  • Leverage the power of experts in your field. Show how others have helped move your industry forward.

Examples:

  • Patagonia puts their products out in the field with experts. These men and women are true athletes. Patagonia lets them have their moment of glory on their website.  Patagonia Ambassadors - Photo Bios
  • Turnstone, a division of Steelcase, provides ideas for customers in the form of customer showcases. This photo tour works for Turnstone as well as viewers interested in the profiled businesses. Customer Story- Klout- Turnstone
  • SAS, a statistical software company, features well known statisticians on their blog. It’s a great way to enhance a product story where the product is difficult to visualize.  SAS highlights a statistician (Gertrude Mary Cox) with a photo and a biography on their corporate blog. Additionally they show a photo of the post author.
  • Worn Wear is Patagonia’s Tumblr where customers submit their then and now images and stories about Patagonia’s products. These customers are real fans since they have to scan their thirty-year-old photos to participate. Worn Wear- Patagonia Customer Stories

4. Make them laugh

Never underestimate the power of entertaining your audience. Of course, what’s entertainment for one niche may not work for others.

Actionable Content Marketing Tactics:

  • Create graphics that encourage your customers to smile. While it may not yield direct sales, it can help expand your reach through earned impressions that keep your name top of mind. These graphics share easily on social media.
  • Take a page from the movie industry. Give your products the Hollywood treatment and promote them like upcoming films.
  • Look back and laugh. Select images from your corporate past that will make your readers chuckle.

Examples:

  • Intel creates amusing graphics that are insider jokes for tech types.  Intel Has Fun-1
  • To promote their newest product, Intel is treating its 4th Gen Intel Core like it’s this Summer’s hot flick. This new approach to marketing the product shows they have a sense of humor.  Intel Treats Product Rollout like Movie Trailer-1
  • Intel has also gone through their photo archives to give old products new attention. These graphics, posted on Facebook, incorporate the hashtag #ThrowbackThursdays (which is easy to do with tech related products.) This is a great idea for creating on-going content involving your audience.  Intel - Theme and hashtag-1

5. Show your face

Skip the stuffy corporate photos that look like your executives are in a police lineup. Bear in mind that prospects and customers like to see the people behind the organization. Even if they purchase online without ever meeting you in person, seeing a friendly photograph goes a long way to building a relationship. At a minimum, expand your website or blog’s About Page with a personal touch.

Actionable Content Marketing Tactics:

  • Let employees to express their personality in your corporate images. Of course, you can set parameters but remember that the goal is to display their human side.

Examples:

  • In addition to their more traditional corporate headshots, Altimeter has a group shot where (almost) everyone is wearing a company vest. Altimeter Team Altimeter Group - Team Members-1
  • By contrast, content site Celebrations incorporated some of their holiday fun into their company headshots. They go one step further by adding personal comments to their photographs.  Celebrations - Photos Show Team

 

Re-imagine your brand from a visual point of view to make your marketing more accessible and easy-to-consume across owned and social media entities.

How have you extended your brand through the use of visual content.

Happy Marketing,
Heidi Cohen


Heidi CohenHeidi Cohen is the President of Riverside Marketing Strategies. You can find Heidi on , Facebook and .

For those of you in Raleigh, NC, please join me for Internet Summit November 11th through 13th. Internet Summit
Use the code HEIDI50 to save $50 OFF any pass level.

Free Download!

Lead Generation and Management for SMB Sales and Marketing

Lead Generation and Management for SMB Sales and Marketing4 Key Action Items For Marketers And Sales Teams Intent on Success Ad Age, BtoB, and Act-On deliver the results of research into the factors of successful lead-generation strategies and tactics, with findings and recommendations most pertinent to the SMB marketer and sales director.

Download this important research report today!


 

 

Related Articles


Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/stewart/99134201/

 

Tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
  • http://twitter.com/joanncorley joanncorley

    I have just gotten an exquisite lesson in marketing. You demonstrated exactly what you wrote. The examples brought the principles to life. I was wondering how to show pictures related to data. The examples that you used were so helpful!

  • Darren Fleming

    Hello Heidi, This is one of the best articles that I have read or seen on how to extend your brand with images “Two Thumbs Up”. One additional method that I think also works well to help you engage viewers and extend your brand at the same time is to also use short, informative and engaging video clips or a video slide presentation.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mary.kesser Mary Rose Kesser

    This article is extremely informative and helpful! These tips definitely show me how much companies and their marketing teams need to focus on how they present their company’s image, voice, and vision on their website. I find it so creative and interesting how the companies shown in the examples have put their own twist on telling their “story”.

    Mary Rose Kesser,
    A.B. Freeman School of Business

  • http://www.dettie.com/ Dettie Ad Life

    The one item that I feel many may find harder to execute than others is “Make them laugh.” Some jokes fall flat and leave readers/user confused.

    However, I do believe it is worth the effort to try and agree it can be a key element in marketing. Great article with useful information.

  • http://twitter.com/SChymboryk Shauna Chymboryk

    I’ve been trying to think of ways to publish more visual (and less textual) content. Thanks for the suggestions.

  • Katy

    As a consumer, visual content is my favorite to look at it. Thanks for the great tips on how to make content more visual for an audience!

  • Taylor Richardson

    Pictures are truly worth a 1,000 words. By increasing the functionality of photos on one’s website or within your content, you can engage customers more easily. By creating visual images that expand how customers interact with your business, I truly believe you will gain more impressions. This is especially true as people are overwhelmed by more and more text ads. Great article to inspire content!