Renu Sharma April 6th, 2020

How Can Visual Content Increase Social Engagement for Your Business?

Visuals have the power to attract the attention of consumers. Marketers have realized this, and that’s why 80% of them have started using visual images. 

Chart showing the types of visual content used
Image Source: Social Media Examiner

Additionally, 63% of marketers use video, while 35% of them use live video. They also consider visual images the most important form of content. Nearly 32% of marketers say it’s the best form of visual content. Image Source: Social Media Examiner

Visual marketing is the key to attracting and engaging your audience on social media. Visuals can get their attention as they scroll through their news feed due to their colorful and attractive nature, unlike text, which tends to look dull. 

What’s more? 

People are incredibly good at remembering visuals. In fact, when people hear information accompanied by images, they retain 65% of it.

But how can visuals increase social engagement for your business? Let’s find out. 

How Visual Content Increases Social Engagement  

The following are several ways through which the use of visuals can help increase engagement on your social media posts.

1. Visual Content Makes Your Content Shareable

Images, videos, infographics, and GIFs drive engagement, but their share-worthiness contributes a lot to this. Make sure that it’s easy for your audience to share content across social platforms to increase exposure.

However, for the content to be shareworthy, your audience needs to be able to relate to it. If it’s not tailored to their requirements, they may not engage with it. 

Hashtag campaigns are one great way to make your posts shareable and increase engagement. You can use branded and campaign-specific hashtags in your posts to promote them and encourage your followers to create and share content around a chosen topic.

To monitor the popularity of these hashtags, you can use hashtag tracking tools like Brand24 and BuzzSumo. 

KitKat Visual Content examples
Image source: Instagram

KitKat uses hashtags to increase engagement. They encourage their audience to share videos and photos with the hashtag #Haveabreak or #haveabreakhaveakitkat. The user-generated photos and videos increase the visibility of their brand and content, which can lead to an increase in engagement too.

2. Visual Content Helps Convey Information

Given a choice between text information and videos, 66% of consumers would rather watch videos to learn about products, according to a Wyzowl study. 

Chart showing the distribution of visual content types
Image source: HubSpot

HubSpot also found that consumers prefer video over other forms of branded content. In fact, 43% of them said that videos are the most memorable form of content as compared to just 18% of them going with text.  

Graphic that shows the effect of infographics as visual content.
Image source: Infographic World

Infographic World also found that visuals influence consumers’ purchase decisions and make them think deeply about a subject. Image via Infographic World

Additionally, 61% of consumers in the HubSpot survey said that they wanted to learn something new from videos. This shows the importance of visuals in conveying information and generating engagement. 

By using visuals to convey helpful information, you can get the attention of your target audience. This is because they’ll get exactly what they’re looking for, and as a result, be more likely to engage with the post.

You need to understand your target consumers’ needs and topics they hold dear. Then you can use that information to create visual posts that not only entertain but also educate them on your products.

3. Visual Content Connects with Your Audience Emotionally

If moved by your content, your audience will associate the feelings they feel while reading it with your brand. People tend to like, share, or comment on posts based on their emotions. 

The content could have made them laugh, cringe, gasp, or cry. Whichever the case, feelings cause them to take action. 

In fact, in a study on what drives the sharing of video ads, researchers found that ads that evoked positive feelings led to more sharing. Using drama, surprise plots, etc. also sparked emotions that induced sharing. 

Implementing the same factors when writing your social posts could lead to more engagement. You can arouse strong emotions using captivating plots, authentic characters, surprise endings, and inspiring stories. 

Hit the right emotions on your social posts to drive engagement. Your followers will then enjoy liking, sharing, and commenting on your posts.

You can engage your audience with branded explainer videos or webinars. Businesses prefer webinars mainly for lead generation by creating a more interactive personal experience. Using webinar software to interact with an audience helps companies to move customers through the sales funnel. Remember, however, that too much branding could push them away.

Instead, understand their needs and engage them with powerful messages.

Understand what emotions drive viral content and include them in your visual content. These emotions include curiosity, interest, uncertainty, admiration, astonishment, and amazement. Think about how you can weave your brand into this content and post it on social media.

For instance, you could show images of your products, services, or employees doing some good in the world. Your customers will notice this and may want to be associated with you. 

In fact, 53% of millennials are willing to pay a premium of 10% or more for socially responsible brands. 

Chart showing the effect of social responsible visual content over millennials.
Image Source: Roth

By being cause-driven, you can drive more engagement on your posts on social media as you can connect to your audience’s emotions. 

4. Visual Content in Varying Formats Drives More Engagement

People react differently to various types of visuals. However, to maximize the chances of them engaging with your content, you need to figure out which visuals they like. 

Create various forms of visual content, such as infographics, videos, memes, GIFs, and others. 

Check the kind of response you get from each, and you will understand what kind of visuals work best with your target audience. Use more of these visuals to drive your engagement. 

Remember, each type of visual will appeal to different parts of your target audience. So, by alternating between the various types of visuals, you’ll be able to generate more engagement. 

To increase engagement even further, you can embed your visual content on your blog so that those who visit your blog can engage with it. Embed tweets, posts, and pins from the social media platforms on the blog so that your site visitors can like and follow your posts from the blog.

Another way to handle this is through embedded shareable links. As the readers go through your blog post, they can easily share content from your blog to their social media feeds.  

Example of a visual content format on Facebook
Image Source: Post Planner

For example, the writer of this blog post included an embedded shareable link in their post. If the reader feels inspired while they read, they can tweet directly to their Twitter account using the link.

Collaborating with influencers can also help you get new visual content and grow your engagement. Their followers will engage with their posts, and might end up engaging with your content too. Additionally, you’ll get fresh visual content to share on your social media accounts and drive your engagement even further.

Ready to Increase Your Social Engagement?

Attractive visuals can catch the attention of your target audience, who may end up sharing your content. However, you must ensure that the visuals you use are relevant for your audience and that they complement the rest of your content. They should also suit your brand’s personality.

If your visual content delivers helpful information to your audience, they’ll likely engage with it and increase your social engagement. Additionally, visuals can evoke different emotions in your audience, and this can nudge them to engage with your content. 

Lastly, there are various forms of visuals that you can use for your brand. Find the ones that your audience likes and incorporate those in your social media strategy. Each type of visual will appeal to a different segment of your audience, and you need to figure out which ones can drive your engagement and use them. 

Do you have any questions about using visual content to drive social engagement? Let us know in the comments. 

One comment

  1. Hi Renu,
    Indeed, it is an amazing post…
    As content reveals al the A-Z information in a specified content, that might not have a good end without a fascinating visual related to that.
    It is 100% true that the audience is really enjoying the visuals than the content.
    Thanks :-)

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