By now, most business people and especially digital marketers, have had the opportunity to pore over at least one and probably several analyses of digital marketing trends for 2019. While it’s still too early to tell how many of these will actually be borne out in the coming year, some trends have already hit their stride as predicted.
One of the more interesting trend predictions is offered by the team at Venngage, which closely follows trends related to visual content, and how those trends impact your social media posting process. The information below describes the Venngage findings, and how visual content trends will impact businesses for the coming year.
Content marketing still rules
The dominant form of digital marketing will still be content marketing during 2019 because it remains the most compelling form of communication between businesses and consumers. Content marketing is very flexible and allows for a great deal of useful data and graphics which still appeal to Internet users.
This being the case, content marketing still has great value to businesses as well as to the people consuming that content, so it is likely to stay on top for the foreseeable future. What this means to digital marketers is that they don’t necessarily need to invest so heavily in paid search marketing, but can rely more on organic marketing, because it’s still very effective.
Visual content is at the top of the heap
Companies face a great many challenges when trying to create visual content which truly appeals to their audience, but when they hit on just the right images and videos, the results can be spectacular. If you manage to create a video or an image which appeals to a few users at first, they can be shared endlessly among friends of these initial users until it literally goes viral.
This means it’s still a top priority for content creators in a business-to-consumer environment to come up with engaging visual content for their readers. There are all kinds of statistics which support the fact that visual content is the type most appreciated by Internet users, and is also the type of content which gets shared the most. This is a strong indication that for digital marketers and business people in general, that a primary focus should be on creating strong visual content.
Posts with images are more successful
Almost universally, posts made to Facebook and the other social media platforms perform much better when they are accompanied by images, as opposed to posts without images. This reinforces the comment above about visual content being critical for attracting user attention and for engaging them for longer periods of time.
If the point of any post you make to one of the social media platforms is to engage more fully with others, and particularly for business purposes, including some kind of image will always cause your post to become more popular and more shared. When users engage with posts more fully, that always results in increased numbers of comments, shares, and likes, and that’s exactly what businesses are trying to achieve.
Tweets with images are more popular
It isn’t just Facebook posts that achieve greater popularity when accompanied by images. The same concept can be extended to include Twitter because statistics show that tweets with images always achieve greater engagement than those which are unaccompanied by images. Since tweets are considerably shorter than Facebook posts and other social media platform postings, they are always easily digestible by readers, so the length of the posting is not even an issue.
All tweets would normally be easily consumed by readers, so all should have equal appeal. But the truth is, all of the most popular tweets are those which are accompanied by images, once again proving the point that images rule, and visual content has the greatest appeal to Internet users. Facebook has achieved a reputation as the dominant business-to-customer social media platform, but Twitter has discovered its own niche as the dominant B2B platform for sales representatives. What this means to marketers and sales reps using Twitter, is that all tweets should be accompanied by meaningful and appealing images.
Infographics outperform other types of content
Especially for business purposes, infographics have been found to be the top performing type of content. There are several reasons for this, including the fact that infographics combine the best of both worlds, in that they provide very useful information in a visual format which appeals to users. The information conveyed through infographics is often remembered much better than the same information which would be conveyed in a normal post.
Users find this to be valuable to them because it’s information they retain and they can use in their daily lives. The visual component of infographics adds additional appeal to the content and causes users to be engaged longer as they consume information. The implication of this for digital marketers is that if they can come up with a truly useful and relevant infographic, it could become very popular among users, and could be shared so as to reach a vast audience. This is basically the whole point of marketing in the first place, so if you can provide your audience with the right infographic, you will definitely have achieved something.
User-created images are more popular than brand-produced images
It has been found that images created by users themselves and shared among friends are more popular than those images which are professionally created by companies. One of the reasons for this is that images taken by ordinary users are not obviously professional, and that seems to be much more appealing to the average viewer, than does a professionally-produced image.
It seems that professional photos imply associations with businesses, and while not being particularly overt, do still create a connection with business in the minds of the viewers. The simplicity and the innocence of photos taken by other users appear to have much greater interest for Internet consumers than do the pristine, professionally-composed images generally offered by businesses. This is more or less bad news for businesses since it means that they have to adapt their visual content to look less businesslike, and more appealing to consumers.
Greater demand for interactive content
There is an increasing demand for content which is interactive because this is considered to be the most engaging type of content currently on the Internet. Consumers have become bored with static content that does nothing to engage them, and are increasingly interested in content pages that are much more interactive, and capture their attention more fully. This is a clear signal to digital marketers and business people in general, that interactive content must be supplied in posts on the social media platforms, and on business websites.