Keeping your business on top of social trends can be an exhausting challenge. As soon as your Facebook page started collecting likes, you had to learn how to market in 140 characters or less. And now that you’re a pro at that, analysts are telling you the real gold is further west; the proverbial marketing princess is in another social network castle.
The current marketing trend has to do with visual marketing—that is, pictures or videos believed to communicate messaging more so than a slogan, article or sidebar ad does. The strength in visual marketing lies in how easily shared it is, whether it’s through Instagram, Tumblr or Vine.
Effective visual marketing is attractive and interesting, and so the challenge of creating it is amplified tenfold. but the benefit of having it spread on its own will generate as much positive buzz for your brand when sent by viewers to their friends, as it will have had you spent thousands more than you actually had to create it.
Choosing a platform for your marketing campaign involves more than just figuring out what the kids are using these days. What flourishes on one platform will flop on another, so you must decipher the small cultural features that draw people toward one network instead of another.
If you want to make short clips that tend to be more funny than informative, the short clip-centric benefits of Instagram or Vine will be perfect for you. These clips have the tendency to go viral and get shared because viewers know that—at the most—they’ll have to commit 15 seconds to watching a video.
Maybe you’re not the creative type, and you don’t have anyone on staff who can string together stirring photos or entertaining videos. That doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of visual marketing. Instead, a platform like Pinterest might be perfect for you. Pinterest is more about collecting images and cultivating boards to intrigue your followers, whether they be infographics, videos or recipes. Proving you have a knack for finding relevant, interesting content is all it takes to become a Pinterest superstar.
Trying to contort your message and style of delivery to fit a visual platform’s trends can lead to disjointed, awkward content delivery. If a specific platform is part of your growth strategy, then you should tailor a new brand of content specifically for that platform. Some reusing of assets is—of course—acceptable, but you want the users of each network to find value in your brand. This way, you will also have the added bonus of providing unique content for the brand superfans who follow you across multiple channels.
Ultimately, finding the right platform for your brand has as much to do with the marketing tactics as it does with the brand itself. There’s no reason a multinational software security company can’t become the hottest thing on Tumblr, as long as it generates the right kind of visual content.
Don’t explore a platform expecting to change things completely; sign up, see what people can’t get enough of, and find a way to take the qualities of that content, and incorporate them into your brand’s marketing.
What are your favorite visual marketing channels? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!
Ivan Serrano is an online writer and entrepreneur who often enjoys sharing his knowledge about content marketing, as well as the important role it has in a business’s online success. His writing also covers business communications, technology, and the process of globalization.