Compelling Visual Content New Tricks and New Tools
Images are vital to success in social media
If you have worked hard to put all the pieces in place to create content that you hoped would “WOW” your readers but you’re not seeing the engagement or leads you expected, you might be underestimating the power of visual content to create that “Wow factor” you want?
Do not make the mistake of overlooking the value of compelling images to get more readers and to create more action on your content. The effect can be exponential as more people get to your site, more are inspired to share it and even more people will see it. You can also use creative imagery and video to share your own content across social media channels.
Whatever your industry, in order to break through the online “noise,” sometimes you need to think outside the box to create impactful visual content. Sometimes you may also need to think beyond the usual social media channels and online venues to share your content.
You may not yet realize the power of Pinterest to drive traffic to your content and to your website. Pinterest offers great widgets for sharing and helpful tools for business users whether B2B or B2C.
In March 2013, Pinterest made analytics available to help you understand which pins are driving traffic back to your site.
With the release of “rich pins” at the end of May, Pinterest has gone even further by allowing brands to present products and purchase information within Pinterest as shown in the pin from Target in this example on the left. Enhanced rich pins can show current pricing details and a direct link to your website’s product page. The link to the seller of the product is displayed on an enhanced pin. You can see on the side-by-side comparison how much more effective this can be for reaching potential buyers on Pinterest.
If you think Instagram is just an app for your kids to use, you might be surprised at the success many brands are having with its creative use – even high-end luxury brands like Mercedes-Benz. Instagram uses hashtags to make sharing and finding fun images easy. Even B2B brands such as Intel can share photos from events, conferences and even products and services in action.
If you have not tried Vine yet, you’re probably going to be hearing a lot more about it. Again, it is one of those social channels that techies and teens have initially taken to. You might think it is not useful to your brand. But, consider that Vine lets users create six-second videos from a mobile device that can be shared using hashtags as well. While I am telling you here how important images are to your posts in your social media strategy, video is rapidly taking social content to the next level. Brands like Lowe’s are finding great ways to put Vine to use building their brand and creating buzz with their online audience.
Every brand certainly does not need to be on every social media channel. It is vital that you understand where your target audience spends time online, understand your own resources and limitations, and prioritize your activities accordingly. The modern marketer also cannot afford to dismiss a tool too quickly. Some experimentation is often a good idea. Each of the many popular social media channels today can be used in fun, creative, and very effective ways to reach your audience. The possibilities are virtually endless! Consider these ideas:
• Use Instagram or Vine to encourage engagement at your next trade show or conference. Give attendees a hashtag for the event and ask them to share their experiences, ideas, post comments and just share the fun of your event.
• Share simple pictures or video content from within your office and let people get to know the people that make up your brand. You can share special events, community projects your company supports, or just day-to-day activities to humanize your brand.
• Ask followers and customers to share content with you. Let them show their ideas or success using your product.
• You can even make a contest of the content shared by your audience. However, policies and considerations for planning social media contests vary greatly from one social channel to another. What works well on Pinterest, for example, may not work on Facebook – and may not even be allowed on Facebook. So it is important that you understand the rules and your own objectives before you start a contest on a particular social channel.
How have you creatively used video or images to boost your online content or to encourage engagement? What ideas can you add to these in the comments area below?