Digital imagery has become the medium of choice for social media. On Facebook, up to 250 million photographs are uploaded every day, and those photographs are prominently featured on the social media platform.
The fact that Pinterest has shot to social media super-stardom thanks to its image-based platform and the surging popularity of infographics (displaying written content in a visual way) both point toward one conclusion—consumers want images, and lots of them.
“Society responds more to visual stimuli and storytelling than any story we read in a magazine or on a website. And the same goes for status updates and content curation,” said Digital strategist Justin Goldsborough, in Social Media Examiner.
The following are four examples of businesses using images to tell stories about their companies, as compiled by Social Media Examiner.
The Story of the Future—General Electric
General Electric has a thriving Tumblr blog that consists of photographs and video, with short text captions containing the relevant hashtags. The General Electric images are popular because they tell a story. Each image explores something interesting about technology, including prototypes and footage of planes, trains and automobiles.
A recent Target advertising campaign used the same concept, only with video. Target created a commercial from home videos of real students opening their college acceptance letters.
The use of real people telling real stories in a powerful, visual medium meant the campaign resonated with people all over the country, and enabled a mega-company like Target to build that personal relationship with their customers through visual storytelling.
How to Leverage Visual Storytelling
Visual storytelling is a marketing technique that can bring you increased exposure, better customer engagement and retention, and more sales.
The key to success is to create visual features that tell a story about your company, industry or niche. If you find something interesting and entertaining, chances are your fans and customers will as well.
Here are some of the top tips from Social Media Examiner for creating visual content that tells a story:
- Images don’t have to be professionally shot, but use images that are colorful, well-balanced and interesting.
- Add “Pin it!” and other social sharing buttons to your website, so your fans can spread the word.
- Find ways to involve fans—perhaps a competition where fans create their own meme or send in pictures of themselves using your product.
- Decide on the story you want to tell with your images.
- Focus on your customers. What images would they find useful, entertaining and inspiring?
- Focus initially on one visual social media website and learn how to utilize this site before moving to another.