The Power of Visual in Telling Your Brand’s Story

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Social Media Interaction 2014

People interact with visual communication much faster – and easier.

Forget about “show, don’t tell.” These days it’s show and tell.

And this holds ever more relevant when it comes to creating a compelling brand story.

The power of visual is simply encoded in our genes. We process visual information incomparably faster than impressions from other senses and we retain it for much longer periods of time. That’s why a large portion of what we perceive from the world is actually in a visual form. It’s no wonder that cave people were drawing on the walls of caves.

While a beautiful story requires authenticity, engaging plot and powerful words in order to reach people’s hearts, a single visual can make people fall in love with your brand – at first sight.

Here is how visual works on our minds and how your brand can apply it in its storytelling efforts.

The psychology of visual

Up to 93% of human communication is nonverbal, and a big part of it happens through our eyes. We are all visual creatures. If you’re not so persuaded, think about babies. They learn through imitation long before they can use language. As we rely on our sight for the bigger portion of our incoming sense impressions, it’s only natural that we are so fond of visual information.

While language is perceived in a linear way, images are like candy for our brains: they process them immediately. This means that visuals are perceived much faster than other content and thus allow for a more effective and, well, “broadband” communication. And what’s even more fascinating is that, while we are so attached to language, we often think in images.

Most of all, visual information has amazing power over our emotionality. Identification and sympathy are intense and overwhelming when we are confronted with stunning visuals. Images can elicit strong feelings and direct our emotional focus, often affecting our behavior and choices. Visuals are simply persuasive. They enhance trust and believing: when we see something with our own eyes, we know what it is for real.

Visual means social

Social Media apps

Content with visuals is shared and viewed more.

With all this in mind, it’s no surprise that content with visuals gets viewed twice more than that without. Videos are also powerful – they bring three times more inbound links than regular posts. From slideshows and infographics to comics and infodoodles, visual content simply engages people more and drives sharing and commenting. That makes it a perfect tool for effective storytelling.

Visual is the power behind microcontent hits like Instagram, Pinterest and Vine. The wide success of these new media channels is, ultimately, based on the ease of perception, simplicity and powerful impact of visual content.

Let’s not forget that it’s also about our shortening attention span. As visuals take less time to process, they perfectly fit the framework of microcontent that does not burden viewers but rather entices them to pay attention.

So a good recipe for your brand’s story is to win hearts with visuals and delight minds with words.

A single visual is worth… a successful brand story

To illustrate the power of visual micro-stories, why not take a look at a few?

Here is the beautiful iBam story about the awesome electricity-free bamboo speaker…

And the deliciously alluring DeBrand Caramel Apple Season story… yum!

Get visual with Edgar

There is no better and more effective way to bring inspiration in your brand’s story than visuals.

Stuck with finding your visual language? Edgar can craft your visual marketing plan and your awesome visual stories.

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