Social media and its benefits have been continuously growing and evolving—both for individual users and businesses. It serves as the bridge for communication for many people around the world, and its ability to reach millions is helpful for businesses. The number of social media users have already surpassed half of Earth’s current population in 2020, and is projected to grow even more within the next five years. Among these users are marketers, and research revealed that 94% use big social media platforms like Facebook, and 94% of B2B marketers use business-related platforms like LinkedIn. This is why social media management in digital marketing is now being taken seriously and also why there are now many businesses who are putting an extreme amount of effort in their campaigns to reap social media’s benefits and seemingly limitless audience reach.
However, with millions of users scrolling through social media every day, there are also millions of content being posted. Now, posting content in the social media sphere becomes a battlefield, especially for businesses–a battle to stand out among millions of others. Research shows that humans process visual content faster, which is why different brands are starting to get extra creative with their visuals to capture the attention of their target audience and the general social media public. It’s an understatement to say that it’s a tough competition.
To emerge triumphant in the battlefield of content, here are seven ways to create visually compelling content that would surely pique the interest of social media users:
Create Pictures in Motion
Compared to still images, pictures in motion are more likely to capture a user’s attention when scrolling through their feed. Cinemagraphs are also now becoming more common in social media, and even influencers use it to complement their feed. They could be created either as a GIF or a video, depending on which social media application it would be posted on. These pictures in motion packaged as GIF or video would be looping once it appears on someone’s feed, and would be on auto-play for mobile users. There are a lot of free applications that allow you to create cinemagraphs.
Emphasize Your Message
Use ‘visual texts’ to send a specific message rather than just post content that’s up for interpretation. When you create banners in motion, spelling the message out word by word until it completes the message would definitely make a person stop scrolling. A random user would stop first out of curiosity, and the suspense of waiting for the message would keep them around until the message is finally whole. People just have that natural urge to find ‘something’ out. Fade-in words that complete a whole message would definitely keep them interested.
Create Stylish Stories
Instagram is one of the biggest social media platforms out there, and there’s an estimate of 500 million users that post Instagram stories every day. Stories that get high views are usually from businesses. Research has also revealed that 58% of users get more interested in a certain product or service after seeing it briefly on a story. Stories are one of the most used features in a social media app, to the point that almost every big social media applications now have it in similar functions but different versions (Facebook’s MyDay, LinkedIn’s stories, and Twitter’s newly updated feature, fleets.)
This is an excellent feature for brands to create content that is more personalized and more stylish since they only appear for a few seconds before another one comes up. To make beautiful stories, use apps that give a selection of elegant templates which you can try, and pick a style best suited to your brand.
Visualize Through Storyboards and Experiment with Templates
Creating high-quality videos indeed takes a lot of effort and time. From pre-production and script-writing to shooting and editing, it does require a lot of energy to produce quality videos. The pre-production may take longer preparation and time than the actual video itself, but it could be much easier if a storyboard was created as a reference. There are also a lot of video editing software that are now available in mobile phones for beginners who wish to dabble in video editing. There are also a lot of free apps that are less complicated and even allow a number of templates that you could choose from free.
Put Subtitles on Your Videos
While there may be an auto-play feature in social media apps like Facebook or Instagram, it’s actually revealed that about 85% of users watch videos with the sound off. Meaning, the auto-play feature would be pointless if the user won’t listen to the video. Adding subtitles to the video would definitely solve this problem, and would not only make the users pay attention, but would also give them an idea of what the video is about–even before they enable the audio. The video itself may make the users slow down while scrolling, but the subtitles would make them stop and watch completely. It also captures the attention of foreign speakers, and is helpful to users who may have hearing issues.
Create ‘Carousel’ Posts
Carousel posts are ads that allow you to post a number of images (ranging from 2 to 10) in a single ad, and they are proven to have the most engagement in Instagram. Carousel ads on Facebook also showed high engagement despite its low conversions. This just means that when done right, carousel posts get the attention of your audience. Carousel posts allow your brand to showcase specific details of your product, either as a row of images, videos, or a combination of both.
Produce Content Directly: Go Live
Almost every big social media platform out there offers the option of live interactions with their followers through live streaming. This is a great opportunity for businesses to create content and deliver them to their audience right away. Live videos are likely to get someone’s attention since they are aware that they could also be a part of it instantly. Responses would be given real-time, and information is shared exclusively. Going live on Instagram, Facebook, or YouTube to announce new products or execute a demonstration guarantees high levels of engagement from the audience. According to research, most Facebook users prefer watching live videos over ‘premiere’ videos or pre-recorded videos, and that there’s at least a 97% increase in sales intent among the target audience in live streams.