What would the World Wide Web (WWW) look like without pictures? The very first image ever was published in 1992, just one year after the first website was published by CERN, the research organization that created the WWW. In the 25 years since, the WWW and the Internet as a whole has been awash in billions of images, videos, infographics and memes – in fact, it would be nearly impossible to imagine any method of digital communication surviving that didn’t allow the transmission of images!
The Age of Sharing Photos and Images Is Now
Even mobile messaging services and Twitter, which was originally built to publish text messages, now allow the sharing of images and videos. Needless to say, your marketing and advertising campaigns would be severely limited without the use of images. But small businesses with limited resources know that consistently producing quality visual content can be a challenge, so they outsource the task to a marketing company or limit their visual marketing to a few smartphone snapshots of their employees, products and completed work. However, your content marketing needs visual assets, and with a bit of planning, research and a healthy dose of patience, you can create great images for your marketing campaigns!
Your Digital Branding Elements Are The Foundation Of Your Visual Marketing
The worst thing you can do with your visual marketing is turn it into a visual free-for-all. While we certainly want you to express your creativity, it’s vital to remember that the foundation and “rules” for creating visual content are based on your brand and branding elements, especially the color scheme that you use to represent your brand. However, this also doesn’t mean that your visual marketing should only incorporate your brand colors. When choosing a color scheme for a visual marketing campaign or initiative, consider a color palette, or a set of complimentary colors, that in turn compliment your brand colors. Here on our blog, we have a series of posts that highlight color palettes that you can use in your visual marketing!
You Don’t Need Expensive Graphic Design Software
When most of us think of graphic design software, we think of Adobe’s Photoshop family of software – in fact, the term “Photoshop” has become a generic trademark that many use as a verb, as in “He photoshopped that image.” While Photoshop and other commercial graphic design software can provide all of the tools you would need to create visual assets for your marketing campaign, the cost of commercial graphic design software can be prohibitive, especially for small businesses. While there are free and less expensive software options available, you don’t necessarily need professional-grade or even consumer-grade software in order to create visual assets for your marketing initiatives and campaigns. There are now online services that can take a lot of the hassle and frustration out of creating great visual images and infographics.
At Blue Zenith, our favorite service is Canva! Canva is a free service that simplifies the process of creating beautiful graphics and documents, and they can help anyone, even those without graphic design experience. Canva.com provides powerful tools and a giant library of base images, photo filters, icons and fonts to choose from, and you don’t need to purchase an expensive software license or subscription to access this service – it’s free!
Another easy and efficient tool to consider is FotoJet, a photo-editor and graphic designer online app that enables you to put together a campaign quickly and easily. Pays to remember both these tools mentioned are free to use.
Publish Your Visual Marketing Wisely
Now that you’ve created some great images, it’s time to post them to your website, blog and social media accounts! While we know that you’re likely eager to show off your work, but scheduling your visual content the right way is almost as important as creating great content in the first place, because your followers will expect your content to be released on a schedule. If you post five images a week, they will expect daily images moving forward.
There is no right or wrong way to schedule content marketing, but nothing puts a damper on a great content and visual marketing campaign or initiative than a flurry of content followed by “silence.” It’s best to create schedule that matches your regular content output – if you only have time to create one visual image per week, then you should only schedule one image per week, even if you have a collection that you just created.
Using visual imagery is one way to make your brand stand out, but it’s not enough to simply be memorable or even unique – you need to “WOW” with your brand! If you need help boosting your brand to an exceptional level, we’re here to help! Simply download our FREE Brand Strategy Worksheet at BlueZenith.com!