In a digital culture that is becoming increasingly immersed in the visual, there is more demand than ever for striking online content. The modern day digital conundrum poses the need for creating content that is both engaging and easily accessible for your audience.
The Visual Shift
Five years ago, text posts were the primary medium of online content on social media websites, however, over the past few years, there has been a perceptible shift towards rich media and visual content. Whether you are scrolling through Facebook or Twitter, you will be bombarded by an array of video and imagery, with many businesses choosing to opt for these quicker, clearer and more concise ways of communicating with their audiences, who likely won’t have time to sift through pages of text.
A one hundred and forty character tweet just won’t cut it anymore: text posts need to be accompanied by a custom graphic or a visual aid in order to stand out. As humans, we are drawn to beautiful and aesthetically pleasing things; use this inclination to your advantage.
Visual aids such as typographics and infographics are greats ways of presenting lots of information in a fun and engaging way. Websites such as Canva offer customisable, professional looking templates, allowing you to quickly and easily create sophisticated and visually striking designs which will resonate with your followers. Visual content is also a great way of communicating information which is both useful and shareable, helping to further your reach and engagement on social media.
Have A Strategy in Place
Improving your presence on social media is a direct way to engage and interact with your audience and increase sales, whether that’s done through a blog post on your website, a Facebook update, or an Instagram post.
Having a clear digital marketing strategy in place will ensure you know exactly which online platforms you will use to engage with customers and how frequently you will post, saving you a lot of time in the future. This should be implemented as part of a wider digital strategy used to boost your online presence and achieve business objectives.
Use Emotional Branding
The digital sphere and online world are ever evolving, so businesses have to constantly be on the ball with creating new and meaningful ways to connect with their audiences.
Statistics have shown that content which is emotionally charged is more memorable, increasing its potential for engagement on social media. However, this is more than just pulling at the heart strings of your followers’ by sharing cute videos of dogs: it’s about developing relationships with your customers and seeking to actively build and maintain them.
This is done by triggering emotional responses from customers by tapping into their psychological needs and desires. A great way to do this is by sharing visualised and inspiring quotations and rich media which resonates with your own brand values. However, in order to effectively engage with your audience, you must ensure that you can correctly identify the emotion you are targeting and that it is relevant to your product or service.
A common pitfall that many brands have fallen into is sharing unoriginal content and widely popular videos on social media that have little to no relevance to their product or service. Although it might be seen as a good thing by some that their favourite brands know what the funniest posts are on Facebook right now, regularly sharing regurgitated content can come across as a lazy and unoriginal social media strategy.
A more direct and authentic way of actively engaging with your customers is by creating and sharing your own original content which is directly related to your industry—after all, it’s what you and your customers’ both have in common. You will come across as passionate and professional, and customers’ will value your acknowledgement of where your business stands in a wider commercial context.
Sharing links, tips, guides and fun facts are all informative ways of doing this and are sure to build your social media following more so than posting the same kinds of videos that everyone’s already seen popping up on their newsfeed everyday!
REALLY Engage With Your Audience
‘Engagement’ seems to be a topical buzzword on the subject of digital content; we talk about ‘engaging’ with our audiences through dynamic content which is likeable and shareable, but what if we really spoke to our audience?
A great—and often overlooked—way to connect with your customers is to start a conversation by picking an engaging question and encouraging them to post a response, starting an online discussion with other users. Simple, but effective, it creates more of a natural and direct form of communication than by simply posting content which users will indirectly engage with by liking and sharing on social media.
Why not design a visual question using a simple online graphics software, such as Canva, and posting it on Facebook or Twitter? Get the conversation going (and don’t forget the hashtags)!
In this fast-paced, online era that is the Twenty-First Century, we need easily accessible, engaging content which can keep up with the paces of change.
Once you have a social media strategy in place, execute it with well-designed, striking visuals and original, engaging written content which is truly reflective of your brand. Remember to make an emotional appeal to your customers; find out what makes them tick and post about it, and don’t forget to start a digital conversation.
Who knows what new trends tomorrow might bring, but I’ll bet that engaging content won’t go out of style!
Over to You
What are your top tips for creating engaging digital content? Have we missed anything out? Let us know in the comments below.