How Visual Content is an Essential Digital Marketing Tool
Dakota Murphey

The human brain takes only 13 milliseconds to process an image, while it takes approximately 250 milliseconds to process words. It is therefore essential to use powerful visual marketing to stand out from the crowd in modern business as every second counts in the online world.

Digital marketing is one of the most effective ways that a company can rise above the crowds of competitors on the internet. However, it is a competitive field, with every company recognizing the power of search engine optimization, from giant corporations to local stores and small-scale e-commerce operations.

In a world where grabbing people’s attention must be instantaneous, visual content is the difference maker. Follow these tips to help you master visual content for your digital marketing strategy.

Strong product images

If you are a company that sells physical products, the images you use in your marketing are essential for sales conversions and building consumer trust in you as a brand. Not only should you include as many product photos and videos as possible for each item but they should be of the highest quality and consistency.

That means using high-quality camera equipment and creating an environment where you can take shots from the same angle for multiple products. When looking to elevate your brand presence through imagery, companies must be as impactful as possible.

Don’t be afraid of 'overdoing it' when it comes to your use of photos. If you’re using enticing images in your branding efforts, there’s a good chance people will want to see more of them. Conversely, using poor-quality product images will do little for improving conversions from your digital marketing efforts as potential customers will perceive you as untrustworthy.

Using social media effectively

Digital marketing visuals must cover more than just the products or services you offer and social media is a great way to drive interest in your brand. Companies that effectively use social media advertising to generate brand awareness can increase their sales by 23%.

There are no secrets about the impact social media can have on a business’s digital marketing efforts but there are a few ways to elevate your brand above others using visuals on these platforms.

It also allows you to get creative and produce fun, engaging, and visually striking content to pull social media users toward your brand. This can be through the use of vibrant colors, powerful messaging, commentary on social issues, or perhaps an attention-grabbing video.

But, before you go too wild your visuals must remain consistent throughout all of your communications. If the content you create for social media, and all of your digital marketing communication, flips from one style to another too often it can alienate customers and send mixed messages.

Creating a visual content strategy

To ensure consistency in the visual content you create and share for your digital marketing efforts, you must create a strategy to follow.

  • Begin by identifying what visual content you think will add value to your brand and help convey your identity. Also, consider what you wish to achieve with visual content for digital marketing purposes – do you want to increase traffic, inquiries, conversions, or brand promotion?
  • Do market research on your customer base; what are their demographics and how can you increase engagement with them?
  • Once you know your audience and the type of content you will create, it’s important to follow through on that strategy and determine where you are planning to share your visuals. For product images, your website or online marketplaces are going to dictate the types of visuals you create while social media, websites, or promotional content allow more creative flexibility.
  • Create the best quality visuals you can with your digital marketing budget, that may mean a DIY approach or hiring a professional photographer, videographer, or graphic designer to make you stand out.
  • Measure your results. This is the best way to see what is working, what isn’t, and how to improve your visual communication by measuring against KPIs.
  • Which types of visual content should you create?

    Part of your visual content strategy will be deciding which types of images you wish to create and share. For example, if your strategy is aiming for luxury, high-class marketing then using GIFs as part of your online visual content might put your customers off, but if you are a youthful and energetic brand it might be perfect for social media engagement.

    Let’s look at the main types of visual content and how best to use them.


    One word you will frequently come across in digital marketing is engagement and there are few better ways to create engagement in visual content than with a video.

    From creating a product demonstration that showcases the features of your designs to the CEO of your company talking on camera about how they overcame challenges, video is a great tool for conveying complicated messages to customers in a quick way.

    The types of video that are effective in digital marketing include:

  • Tutorials and how-tos
  • Case studies
  • Webinars and talks
  • Behind the scenes to showcase how your company works
  • Customer testimonials
  • Interviews
  • Branded commercial
  • Animations
  • Photographs and still images

    Photographs and digital images are powerful tools in the arsenal of a digital marketing professional as they can be used in a variety of ways. From helping to breathe some life into a social media post to placing products in situ, acting as a source of inspiration, or conveying your brand message at a glimpse, photographs liven up and bring color to your content.

    High-quality photography can showcase people interacting with your products and services and are useful for visual communication from your website to social media and even print marketing.

    Companies can use photographs in the following ways for digital marketing:

  • Product imagery
  • Branded images and social media posts
  • Display ads
  • Slideshows
  • Blogs
  • Infographics

    Infographics are a great way for companies to share information with their customers at a glance. They use data, lists, charts, and graphs to convey a variety of messages. This might be listing accomplishments, product variations, instructional guidance, and comparisons that show a company’s product in a better light than its competitors.

    Infographics are good for the following visual content marketing purposes:

  • Data visualization - particularly large data groups
  • Highlighting your causes and the actions you take
  • Pulling quotes and messaging into images
  • Visual content can make the difference

    Over 65% of Twitter users are skim readers,, meaning they glance over their timeline until something grabs their attention, such as a strong visual. Knowing the power of visual content should drive your digital marketing strategy to include as much imagery as possible to increase engagement and drive customer sales or inquiries.

    Not only must your visuals be of a high standard, but they must also be appropriate for your target market, align with your strategy and be measurable to showcase ROI results.