Science Proves: It’s Time to Get Visual!
Do you crave more attention for your business? I’ll bet you do — and it’s getting more and more difficult to achieve.
Studies prove that visuals capture our attention and inspire an emotional connection unlike anything else — key for getting noticed and creating the deeper engagement businesses seek in today’s media environment.
Visuals are social. People respond to visual media in a direct, visceral way unlike any other content. Research shows that 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual. Visuals are processed 60,000X faster than text — we pay attention to them, believe them and remember them. And once someone is engaged and emotionally vested in your business, the broader story can be told.
Not only do images capture our attention, they are perfectly suited to today’s mobile environment and small screens where reading small text is more difficult to do. Visuals clarify otherwise complex messaging. It’s been said that it is much easier to show a circle than describe it, and in many ways we are returning to our earliest beginnings when pictures dominated communication.
A consistent visual content strategy will unify your business as it drives through the busy, distracted, hyper-engaged media environment we all participate in these days — continually reinforcing your brand and your messaging.
And what’s more, people love sharing visuals on social media! We are increasingly becoming a visually-oriented society as things constantly zip by us in today’s media from all directions. Did you know that photos are twice as likely to be shared on Facebook as posts with text only? Photos and videos on Pinterest are driving more traffic to websites than Google+, LinkedIn, StumbleUpon and Twitter combined!
If people enthusiastically share images that are part of your business’s visual strategy, it vastly expands your reach in a very powerful way! Visuals give your brand advocates the tangible content they are looking for to share with others in the lively social streams.
Are you missing out?
It makes total sense, today more than ever, to pay serious attention to your company’s brand and visual strategy. Too many businesses miss this powerful concept — from weak branding to randomly posting images without rhyme or reason — fracturing their messaging as they get lost in the shuffle. And the unfortunate irony is the more of this they do wrong, the worse it is for their business as it creates widespread brand confusion.
Two steps to total visual domination:
Step 1. Nail down your brand
Since your visual strategy will play off of your brand identity, you need to make sure that’s right first. Get to the core essence of your business and then communicate that in a simple, visually unique way.
A laser-sharp, visually-powerful brand is the singularly most important step you will take to reach, excite, and inspire people to action. It mustn’t be taken lightly. Many businesses ignore this and then struggle to gain a foothold — maybe even redoing their brand in future months and years finally trying to get it right — only to lose the brand equity they did establish which leads to lost revenue, costing way more in the long run.
As design legend Paul Rand once said, “Design is the silent ambassador of your brand.”
Step 2. Develop a visual strategy
A visual campaign should be developed and coordinated for both your online and offline endeavors. It should be consistent, compelling, on-strategy and on-brand — making you engaging but with a purpose.
People interact with those they know, are comfortable with and inspired by. It’s been proven over and over that you only have a few precious seconds to capture someone’s attention before they move on. We all know quality when we see it and well-crafted visuals draw people in, humanizing your business and giving people things to share.
Visual content includes photos, infographics, illustrations, quote graphics, slideshows, memes, videos, animations, and any other type of imagery that can be engaged with and shared.
What are the powerful messages you need to communicate and how will you visualize them?
Amazing opportunities for your business
Good design, branding and a smart visual strategy are the keys to making your mark in today’s noisy, competitive world. Yet few companies are taking advantage of this visual revolution — and that provides amazing opportunities for your business.
The big qualifier
If you do this with a half-baked plan and less than stellar images — you know, those with amateurish design, blurry photos, low resolutions, etc. — and in a slipshod, inconsistent manner — it will backfire. You would actually then be better off blending in and lost in the crowd, because if your visual presence isn’t going to be at the same level as the business you excel at, it will only bring you down. If you don’t have the resources, hire a pro.
These are exciting times for media and the part that smart visuals can play in capturing eyeballs and driving a message home. It’s time to partner up with good, custom design and develop an effective visual strategy that gets your business the attention it deserves.
Photo illustration work: Paul Biedermann, re:DESIGN