When it comes to visual content — our lives are saturated with it. We see visual content in the form of billboards, television shows, restaurant menus, movie posters, blogs, website banners, and social media galore.
There’s a wide array of visual content possibilities out there and they each serve their own purpose when it comes to crafting incredible and engaging social content.
From image sliders to sketches — here are some of our favorite ways to spread a message or convey an idea through use of visuals.
Some of them are little less utilized than the others — but all of them playing their own unique role in the visual atmosphere.
1. Progress GIFs
Progress GIFs are the kind that show the progress of how something has changed or developed.
Watch this hypnotic GIF that shows how the iPhone has changed over the last seven years:
For fast and easy GIF creation on your own, visit Giphy where you can create animated GIFs from YouTube, videos, or images and adorn them with captions and stickers to match.
Also, check out the ultimate GIF Guide for Social Media Marketers which includes an assortment of useful tips and tricks to get you going.
2. Image Sliders
An image slider is similar to a slideshow where it allows you to display multiple images, videos, or graphics on your web page.
Image sliders are often used by companies to market certain products or offers simultaneously. For example, popular home decor company, HomeGoods, uses an image slider on their homepage to display both seasonal inspiration and offers for gift cards. So, if you venture to their site, you can see how to decorate your living room for autumn and also start thinking about that gift card you might want to purchase for your daughter’s Christmas stocking.
In essence, image sliders work to convey multiple things or ideas at once. And whether you’re using them for your own personal website or for a large brand’s marketing campaign, they’re known to do the trick.
3. Sketches, Comics, and Visual Notes
Drawings and comics are easy to absorb and understand — they’re also a powerful way of attracting an audience. And is super fun, if we can dare to say so.
As a unique way to represent your brand, use PicMonkey to turn your photos into sketches which can then be shared on your website and social platforms.
Try create a sketch logo or turning your typical “About Us” section into a sketched portrait of the entire team.
4. Graphs and Charts
Charts, graphs, and maps bring data to life in an engaging way. Articles containing charts and infographics are known to show reader engagement. Plusthey drive growth — and in fact, according to this article from infogram.com, articles that contained charts and infographics showed significantly more reader engagement:
- 16%-34% more comments and shares
- 65% – 100% lift in average session duration
- Up to 317% improvement on depth of scroll
Over time, the graphs and charts work to compare or track changes in your business.
If you’re looking to dive into using these sorts of visuals in your own work flow, experiment with the free chart software, Venngage. It’s easy-to-use and flexible, allowing for different fonts, custom set colors, sizes and more.
For a comprehensive tutorial on how to create great graphs and charts before you dive in, look over this tutorial for clear and concise direction.
5. Animated Graphs
Instead of going with the typical average diagrams that have been used across social platforms and the web for years, why not add a little flavor, flare and variety with some animated graphs to your sites?
The online presentation and infographic tool, Visme, works to turn otherwise boring data into engaging contact by creating animated graphics and charts with rollover effects.
This is an easy and customizable way to keep data visually appealing and to help lock it into people’s minds so that they absorb and remember it.
Screenshots, or screen captures, are one of the best visual tools to offer instruction and guidance. People tend to appreciate screenshots when they are learning how to navigate a new program or use an application — so that their learning process isn’t overly saturated with just written words. (Many of us are visual learners, after all.)
Photo development software Macphun, for example, uses animated screenshots to help viewers understand the necessary steps they need to take to improve photos, do things like remove skin imperfections, create monochrome photos and more.
Today, presentations can be interactive, readily available from any device, and truly fun to share. And presentations with engaging material, smooth transitions and creative visuals can leave viewers feeling inspired (rather than bored).
Find a good example of creative presentation here.
For stylish animation and a bit of lighthearted humor intermixed with nice visuals, visit Powtoon, which works to create animated videos for your presentation in just a few minutes.
For 10 tips on how to create an incredible presentation, make sure to give this article on TED talk’s blog a look. They’ll cover everything from topic transitions to meaningful photos to creating consistency, all of which will help you put together a killer presentation.
Also, explore design tips from the team at Visage. They’ll have you ditching bullet points and over-using a myriad of text colors in no time.
Photographs serve as one of the most longstanding and powerful ways to share visuals across a variety of platforms. The shots you share on social media serve every purpose from simply putting a face to a brand — to connecting your brand with billions of people around the world.
Also, for some advice on how to create engaging images for social media, take a look at this article from Social Pilot.
Typography introduces style and creatively alters the appearance of text and words in your copy and images. If you master typography, you can enhance readability, encourage information processing, and even engage learners' emotions.
Try PicLab for iPhone, iPad and Android to easily add a layer of typography to your photos. Choose from different fonts, sizes and colors — add layer illustration and other design elements to your image.
For something a little more creative, explore Apple Store on your iPad. With a slogan that reads, “Ideas begin on paper”— this app works much like actual paper itself does, offering a tangible experience through modules made for sketching, coloring and note taking.
10. Memes and the Fun Others
Then, of course, there are the memes, the jokes, and the additional GIFS that have seemingly turned into an inside joke (the kind that the whole internet is in on). This is the type of visual content that adds humor to your campaign and catches the attention of viewers.
Brands use progress GIFs in an effort to get their consumers to connect with their brand. DiGiorno pizza, for example, posted this GIF to Twitter:which makes eating pizza looks almost a little too fun. Their hashtag “rise to the occasion” serves an excellent purpose as well and gets their users excited (some of whom, even mention the advertising).
Memes are even used by some countries owning Twitter accounts. Check out @Ukraine’s reaction to the one of the biggest hacker attacks in history, for example:
Visual content comes in all sizes, sorts and configurations. From photographs, to silly GIFS, to wild typography of all sorts — there are a vast assortment of possibilities for visual content at your disposal. It’s just up to you to choose what works best.
And the great thing is they all serve their own unique purpose. Try them out. See what you like. See what you don’t like. See what helps you to stay consistent while crafting your visual voice.
Because when it comes to branding and marketing, visual content is something that can certainly set you apart from the crowd. And today, crafting engaging and beautiful social content is easier than ever before. Thanks to apps, softwares and programs.
However you decide to convey your message, we wish you luck and excitement in your visual journey ahead!