In September we published a beginner’s guide to visual content, and decided to kick it up a notch this week with an advanced version. If you’re already utilizing professional or stock photography on your website and have included some info graphics with your content and in you blog posts, here are a few things you can use to really elevate your visual content…
Create (or purchase) videos.
A video is a highly effective and versatile way to grab the attention of your potential client or customer. You can hire a professional videography company to film several videos in a session, or if you or a team member have sufficient experience, you can film the videos in-house.
There are several different approaches that you can take for your video content depending on what you want to showcase and what you want to communicate to your potential client or customer.
Examples of videos that you can create:
- Introduce your brand or business
- Introduce yourself and your core team/staff
- Introduce your products or services
- Give an in-depth demonstration or a tutorial on your product
- Give a tour of your store, restaurant, office, or facility
- Discuss common problems that you offer a solution to
- Discuss industry statistics that could encourage conversions or sales
What makes videos so versatile is that they can be used in a variety of places and are great for omnichannel marketing. Depending on the nature of the video, it can be used as a header on your home page in place of a still image, to capture your visitor’s attention right off the bat. If your video is presentational, educational, or motivational, you can place the video somewhere on your homepage or an interior page, or you can include it in a relevant blog post. Beyond your website, you can share that same video to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, Vimeo, LinkedIn, and other social platforms to reach a wider audience. If you are placing the video on your website, it is always best to host the video off-site on a platform like Vimeo or Youtube and then embed the video or link to it on your site. This has several benefits beyond additional visibility, as it helps with the buffer/load time and data storage.
Keep in mind that, like all other content, quality is essential. Videos should always be the highest possible definition, and any branding or added graphics should be consistent and crisp. Audio is just important as the visuals in a video, and should be crisp and well-balanced. Using a professional videographer and editor ensures that your videos look and sound their best on all devices.
Take and use screenshots
Screenshots can provide your audience with a glimpse into the real-time inner workings of your service or your product. You can showcase the product’s functions or details of the services you offer from a user or consumer’s perspective.
Similar to a demonstration or tutorial video, screenshots can show the potential client or customer what your product looks like “out of the packaging” and give them the most accurate view of what they can expect when they use your product or service for the first time.
Because of the raw, authentic nature of screenshots, they can increase a potential user or consumer’s trust in your product or service, and in your brand or business over all. They backup the claims that you have made in your ads and sales content, and they show that you care about your user’s experience.
When taking screenshots, always make sure that they are tidy and only showcase your product. Avoid having other tabs or applications open that could be visible in your screenshot, and ensure that your screenshot isn’t cropping out or cutting off valuable information that the user or consumer may want or need to see. You can also annotate a screenshot if there is a particular part that you would like to draw attention to, like a button or a specific feature
You can use these screenshots on their own in a blog post or on a product or services page, or you can include them on an infographic or in a video.
Use gifs or memes
In today’s digital age, a meme is essentially an image that is accompanied by a humorous caption. A meme is most effective when the image has become universally recognized and the intent of the different caption variations is universally understood.
While memes are primarily shared and popularized by older teens and young adults as sheer entertainment, they can play a powerful role in content marketing when used correctly, and can be so easy to execute.
While memes shouldn’t become a regular feature of your visual content, they’re especially effective for special events, special deals, or holiday announcements. You can also sparingly use a particularly trendy meme during its peak popularity to spark humor and to maintain relevance.
There are a few things to keep in mind when creating or utilizing a meme on your site or social media:
- Determine if the meme is appropriate for your brand or business’s niche. If a meme isn’t remotely relevant to your niche, or more importantly, if the meme is inappropriate, it can negatively affect your brand or may receive little or no engagement. Choose memes that are appropriate and that can be made relevant to your niche, to properly reflect your brand and to ensure a great level of engagement.
- Don’t take yourself too seriously. Memes are silly, and that’s why they work so well. Don’t try to make your caption too serious or overly professional. Keep in mind how it will reflect your brand or business, but don’t be scared to show your fun side, especially if your audience is a younger demographic.
- Timing matters. Memes are most effective when they’re in their viral state. While older, ‘outdated’ memes still earn a laugh when executed well, they may not garner the same attention as the ones that are currently popular. But timing doesn’t just matter in terms of relevancy; while you shouldn’t take yourself too seriously with your memes, you should avoid using a meme in a highly serious context. If an event, holiday, or simple announcement requires sincerity or gravity, a meme may appear disingenuous or insensitive.
It is best to use memes sparingly and intentionally, but ultimately, have fun with them!
We love visual content.
We build our websites around our client’s content (copy and visual). We believe that websites should serve the content and be strategically designed to meet and exceed the conversion goals. Content shouldn’t just be created or used to fill up space. We’re passionate about helping you create or find the perfect videos, screenshots, or memes, and finding the most effective placements for them on your site.
Our team of experts will help you polish, create, or find the visual content that will grab the attention of your potential clients and customers and get them interested in you.