visual storytelling

It is common for web designers and graphic designers to get curious when they hear that the trends in the design industry are changing. They want to know what’s the next big thing. They want to be ahead of the competition. In 2014, the latest trend was that of interactive templates and bold typography. Later we had the minimalist movement when flat mobile-friendly designs were high in demand. After that, parallax scrolling was the big thing.

What’s going to be next now? Designers all over the world have been discussing visual storytelling lately. You can do visual storytelling marketing in many different ways. This post will discuss this new trend, how to implement it, and what benefits it offers.

What is Visual Storytelling?

By definition, the concept of visual storytelling might be challenging to explain. But it is a pretty straightforward idea. It refers to the art of communicating a story, or a series of messages, with the help of multimedia. As they say, ‘A picture is worth a thousand words’, marketers and business owners can convey their message to their audience more effectively if they do so through different forms of multimedia.

Due to the highly digitized world that businesses operate in these days, visual storytelling has become more relevant than ever before. The sooner a business understands its value and starts implementing it in its advertising strategies, the better it is for them.

The multimedia used in visual storytelling marketing include images, graphics, infographics, vector art, and different types of videos. The goal is to trigger emotions among the audience and encourage them to participate with the brand.

Visual storytelling marketing combines the different tactics that marketers have been using to promote products and services over the years. It brings together the messages of designers and marketers and brings them to life.

Designers who are talented in their work can produce awesome visual storytelling content. The visual formats that they use are appealing to the audience’s eyes and gauge their interest in the brand that’s being promoted.

Using visual storytelling means compiling the necessary information about a brand or product and turning it into informative, relevant, and eye-catching art pieces. GIFs, memes, educational infographics, explainer videos, cutting-edge comics, and animation are all part of this concept.

Note that visual storytelling is different from combining some text with an image. That could be done for creating thumbnails for blog posts or Youtube videos. Using visual storytelling is a more in-depth process. It is about determining the best way to present information to ensure that it attracts the audience. Its purpose is to make the visual aspect of the message so powerful that anybody who sees it cannot ignore it. In other words, it magnifies the performance of the content.

Why is Visual Storytelling Important?

There are many benefits of visual storytelling. But before listing them out, let’s look into some statistics to see why visual storytelling is given so much importance. Studies have revealed the following amazing facts.

  • The human brain processes visual elements 60k times faster than it processes plain text.
  • Content that has relevant images embedded in it gets 94% more views than plain text content.
  • About 66% of social media posts involve visual content.
  • Roughly 100 million users browsing the internet watch at least one video online every day.
  • More than 46% of website visitors judge the company’s credibility based on its web design.

These statistics make the importance of visual storytelling quite obvious. Let’s talk about some substantial benefits of visual storytelling.

1. It Makes Content More Memorable

Content presented in the form of images and videos is a lot more appealing and memorable than plain text. When a person watches a video, they can focus on it for a longer period. This is why even blog articles have images in between the text to keep the reader going. If someone reads a long article with no images, infographics, GIFs, or videos in between, they are more likely to drop out in between instead of reading until the end. Visual storytelling makes your marketing content more memorable and easy to recall.

2. It Makes Ads More Engaging

Video marketing is a lot more effective because videos give a more personalized feel to the audience. Some marketing videos make use of a spokesperson who directly questions or interacts with the viewer. Other videos have a narrative or storytelling style, which keeps the audience interested until the end. If the same message is conveyed in plain text, nothing is stopping the readers from closing the tab or browser before getting to the end of the message.

video added to a Strikingly user's web page to explain the courses that the company offers

Image taken from Strikingly user’s website

3. It Makes Advertisements Entertaining

Using visual storytelling involves adding a little bit of music to the marketing content. Some adverts come with a melodious jingle, while others have lyrics to promote the brand as well. The music and the visuals combined make the content entertaining. Even if the audience is not interested in the product that’s being promoted, they might still want to watch the ad just to get entertained by it. Gradually they will get familiar with the brand name and eventually might consider buying from that brand.

4. It Heightens the Brand’s Credibility

Using visual storytelling means showing that you are completely updated with the technology in the world. After all, if your marketing content is filled with all kinds of latest and professional multimedia, it means you have the talent to produce something fantastic by using the latest technology. This heightens the credibility of your brand, which in turn attracts more high-class customers to your business.

healthy meals on a fitness website built on Strikingly

Image taken from Strikingly user’s website

5. It Increases Conversions

Since you can grab more people’s attention through visual storytelling, you will likely get more conversions in your marketing campaigns. Conversions are the first step towards making sales. If your conversions increase, ultimately, your sales will also rise.

6. It Makes a Website Look Impressive

When your website content is full of different content components, such as pictures, live photography, slideshows, live footage videos, animation videos, GIFs, and infographics, it looks awe-inspiring. Your site visitors would, at the least, browse through all the pages and skim through all your content. They might spend more time on pages where you have the most visual content. This increases your website’s search rankings and your brand’s equity.

photography on a service providing company's website built on Strikingly

Image taken from Strikingly user’s website

7. It is Good for Your Brand’s Overall SEO

Visual storytelling will automatically enhance the search engine optimization for your website, your social media pages, any guest posts you make, and any other landing pages you create to promote your brand. This is because Google bots and other search engine spiders will spend more time crawling web pages with more multimedia content.

8. It Makes Your Message Easy to Understand

Infographics can explain a concept or process in just a couple of seconds that might take more than an hour to be explained through plain text. Videos convey a message within seconds by grabbing the viewers’ attention suddenly and making them comfortable with the tone in which the spokesperson or voiceover artist speaks. If the same message is delivered to someone in a plain text email or letter, they might need to read it a few times to get the real gist of it.

The faster your audience understands your message, the faster they can take the desired action towards your business. Visual storytelling speeds up the process of making your audience truly grasp the meaning of your marketing messages.

How to Use Visual Storytelling?

Here are a few effective ways of using visual storytelling.

1. Be Creative

When you design your web pages and social media posts, be creative in the type and format of content you upload. You can use images, GIFs and videos for Facebook. You can also insert links to blog posts or Youtube videos in your Facebook and LinkedIn posts. On your website, surround your text with attractive imagery to keep the viewers engaged. Be strategic in choosing your website template. Select one that allows you to add the maximum number of photos and videos to your website content.

2. Optimize All Your Images and Videos for the Web

Make sure all the photos, images, and videos that you produce are optimized for the web. There is no point in this digital age to create marketing content optimized for print or PDF. Most of your audience will view your marketing content on the internet. Optimize everything to present it in its digital form.

product photos of women's wear on a Strikingly user's website

Image taken from Strikingly user’s website

3. Make Sure Your Website is Responsive

Your website needs to be responsive for your visual storytelling to be effective. If it’s not, all your effort will go to waste as people won’t be able to view your content clearly when they use a different device.

Mobile version screenshot of a Strikingly user's ad agency website

Image taken from Strikingly user’s website

Strikingly offers highly responsive website templates that are easy to build and smooth to browse. We understand the value of letting your customers browse through your site with ease. That’s why we have created our templates keeping user experience our top priority.

The responsiveness and smoothness of these templates make it easy for you to add visual storytelling content to your website. You can now build a beautiful website all by yourself and use it as a one-stop platform to promote your products or services.