If you aren’t currently making creative content part of your marketing campaigns, then it’s time that you reconsider. With one study finding that if people hear information on its own they are only likely to remember 10% of that three days later, compared to if it were paired with a relevant image where 65% of that information is retained – visuals have the power to dramatically increase the impact of your message and improve its memorability.

Visual content doesn’t just improve how key messages are maintained by consumers either, as it can increase social shares too. Social media posts which contain an image are 40 times more likely to be shared than other types of content, with coloured visuals increasing an audience’s willingness to read a piece of content by 80%.

Design is what makes a brand memorable. How many of us can differentiate between brands based on just their logo alone? These are a symbol which defines their status and makes them memorable, just like creative content does; consider it the new advertising, if you will.

As consumers, we have become a population who thrive on imagery. We have whole social networks designed around the purpose of sharing image-only content, so it’s no surprise that 60% of marketers believe that visuals are essential to their marketing strategy.

Creative campaigns, content and design need to be engaging, likeable and shareable, and we’re sharing the ways in which you can ensure your marketing strategy is meeting those aspirations and your content goals.

Design for engagement

When designing, question whether what you are working on evokes a response, and if so, what kind of response? Is it one which will connect with your target audience on an emotional level, making them feel that it has to be shared as it connects with them and their beliefs personally? Or does it take a more educational route, thus meaning that it’s informative nature means that the viewer will want to share it in order to impart knowledge?

In order to design for engagement, you need to be designing for emotion and purpose too. If you can, then sharing your content with a select preview audience before its official launch will provide you with invaluable feedback on how the piece will be received, allowing you to address any issues which may be highlighted.

Keep conversion goals in mind

Design isn’t there to look pretty, it’s there to serve a purpose. So, if your website is designed to be all singing and dancing, yet isn’t converting, then it’s time to reconsider how the design can be changed to attain these targets.

While, as a designer, you may be consumed with how to ensure that the website is visually appealing, you need to ensure that you’ve considered how it will impact the user experience. Look at how the site is currently performing – what’s working and what isn’t – and ascertain how this can be utilised going forwards.

A website is there in order to get the user to do something. So, remove your designer hat and look at it from a consumer perspective. How would you want to move round the site? It’s your role to instruct the user what they need to do, so make it as clear as possible what they are supposed to do. Is it to fill out a contact form? If so, have it as a pop-up on screen or gate content pieces so that it cannot be downloaded unless contact information is given.

Similarly including more white space in your design, forces the eye to move around the page to search for information. This negative space effectively trains the website users to move around the website and search for the information that they require.

Design is all about the user, and keeping that in mind when designing will ensure that you are meeting their needs, and in turn the businesses goals.

Be useful

If you aren’t creating useful content, then you aren’t going to get the engagement or results that you desire. Everything that you create should have a purpose and use to it for the audience.

For example, a survey is there to show the current view of the public on a topic or state of an industry, while an infographic may be used to educate and guide a consumer, an interactive piece such as a quiz has a ‘fun’ element to it.

For every piece of creative or written content that you create it must have some use to your audience. Otherwise, it will render itself useless, resulting in no editorial placements gained, no social shares and no goals completed.

Designing for a creative campaign or website isn’t about creating something which is creatively ground breaking. It’s ultimately for you, as a business, to reach your goals and increase brand awareness; and in order to do that, you need to ensure you are designing with a consumer-first mind-set.

 

By Chris Hardy, owner of Xchange Training


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