Marketing is essentially a three step process – Attract, Inform, Capture. For your campaign to be successful, it is important to reach a wide pool of target buyers (Attract). Your marketing assets are then instrumental in influencing their thought process (Inform). With the right lead magnets and Call-To-Actions (CTAs), this pool of target buyers are converted into leads for your business (Capture).
There are a number of different strategies that can help with this process. One of the most popular formats has however been the use of visual assets. According to one study, over 51% of B2B marketers have visual assets in their content marketing campaign. Further, over 80% of marketers use visual assets in their social media campaigns. Clearly, a visual is worth a thousand words when it comes to marketing.
Not all visuals deliver the same impact, though. GIFs and memes, for instance, can be quite effective in attracting prospects to your social media page, but may not be effective in informing or converting. Infographics are extremely effective in attracting and informing while videos might be handy during the conversion process.
So how do you go about identifying and investing in visual marketing assets that work? Here is a quick guide.
Start with the objective
Every industry is unique in terms of what platforms work best, the audience demographics, and content that deliver results. The first step in the process is to split your campaign into the Attract-Inform-Capture phases and identify the core objective in each of these phases.
For example, in a sales driven organization, your visual assets are also used by your SDRs (Sales Development Representatives) to elicit interest from prospective buyers and inform them of your offering. In such instances, you may make use of visually captivating digital catalogs to meet your marketing objectives.
On the other hand, take the example of a local business like wedding planners or florists. Such businesses rely on inbound calls to grow their business. The target demographic is also offline and so producing high quality posters and flyers is key.
Understand your demographics, their interests, behavioral patterns and buying behavior before investing in the right kind of visual assets.
Investing in assets
Once you have identified the objective, the next step is to invest in producing these assets. This can be an expensive proposition since every form of visual assets can take a lot of time and money to create. Infographics need extensive research, while videos will need elaborate planning and direction. It is highly recommended to produce minimum viable assets to test the effectiveness of your campaign before investing completely in production.
For instance, for a restaurant that wants to create an Instagram marketing strategy, the biggest expense here would be the use of a photographer to routinely capture pictures of the food and interiors that can elicit user engagement. Since the success of your campaign depends on the kind of shots you take, it is a good idea to capture limited shots and study their engagement on Instagram before signing a contract with a photographing agency.
It needs to be pointed out that producing a minimum viable asset is not just about the visual itself, but also its alignment to your branding objectives. Studies show that colors have varying levels of psychological impact on a consumer based on their industry, culture, demographics and emotion. It is wise to consult a branding expert to identify the colors that must go into your visuals in order to derive the right results.
Promote – Analyze – Repeat
Once you have a minimum viable asset ready, promote it to a small group of prospective buyers to study impact. A B2B organization might for instance use the asset in an ad targeted at the buyer before using it in their collateral. A restaurant might advertise the new images in a limited campaign targeting a few hundred users. Study viewer engagement and results from the campaign to take a call on its effectiveness. If your budget permits it, you may also create multiple variants of your assets and assess performance against different sets of users. This gives you a better idea of what works and what doesn’t.
Once you have gained sufficient insights, it is ideal to start working on your intended assets. This time, you may expand the reach of your assets to a larger group. However, continue to monitor engagement and measure results that can be helpful in gaining insights that may be used to tweak the campaign for future.
Do you have a visual marketing plan in place? Share your secrets in the comments.