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6 Easy Guidelines and Ideas for Visible Storytelling in Advertising

The human brain absorbs visual information 600 times faster than noise and smell. People also remember images with logical connections between them that are 65% better than text. But how can you make the visual information generated by your brand even more effective? Some visual storytelling tips will help you.

Tips for Visual Storytelling

Let's dive into these 6 simple visual storytelling tips:

1. Choose your goal and metrics

Aimless marketing only leads to budget losses. So don't let your story-based content be commercially aimless.

Storytelling can be integrated into any level of your marketing strategy, including a single ad, a marketing campaign, social network tone, and general branding.

If visual storytelling is a new tool for you, start on a small scale. For example, use visual storytelling to promote a new product on social networks. In this case, the goal of your message is to increase sales of goods. Metrics that you can use to assess the success of a storytelling approach are sales, customer inquiries, and social resonance (reposts, brand or product mentions, and comments).

2. Set a budget to find your tools

You can use visual storytelling on a single product advertising level or through branding in social networks. Each of the options means that you need a certain budget. The smaller your communication scale, the cheaper the tools.

Master visual storytelling by working with small messages. This approach will help you figure out which stories are most popular with your target audience and invest more in communication that will really work in the future.

Visual storytelling can be presented in the form of a static image with brand titles, custom animations, videos, face filters, online games, and more. The cheapest way to start visual storytelling is to use images that I use a lot and then edit them according to your needs. There are many editing tools so you can design like a pro without the need for design experience.

3. Emotions are everything

The emotional context of your brand can be very broad. Curiosity can encourage your customers to browse your online catalog. The desire to be part of a cool crowd encourages users to make certain products bestsellers. The euphoria when ordering a long-awaited product can result in an online shop user ordering something different as part of an order.

You can work with either positive or negative emotions, since the latter can also be a trigger to buy. If your potential customer gets confused by your competitor while reading the assembly instructions, they are more likely to buy goods from you the next time you offer them a solution such as free installation.

Analyze which emotions are at the heart of a potential customer. Anger? Despair? Joy? This emotional trigger influences your storyline and its visual style. Doing so increases your chances of drawing attention to your product and encouraging them to take action.

4. Create a hero to save the day

The main rule for creating a realistic hero of your story is relevance to your audience. In order for your story to be involved, a hero (and an antihero) must be familiar with your audience. It is wonderful if the prototype of the hero is representative of your target group. At the same time, the hero can be the product you are promoting or your brand.

And who is an antihero? A good antihero embodies the hero's fears and represents a serious threat to him or her. An antihero should also be easily recognizable to the target group. Use your audience research to learn their fears and create an antihero based on this information.

5. Create a storyboard based on conflicts

A story is impossible without conflict. The conflict begins with your hero facing up to his challenges. Exciting stories are based on the clash of a hero and an antihero (the deepest fear of a hero). Your hero can win or die, or you can leave an open ending that gives you room to continue. Create your first story with the following structure:

  • Introduction
  • Rising action
  • climax
  • Falling action
  • Resolution

A storyboard typically consists of simple images that reflect the essence of each structural element in your story. You can even use it as content for Instagram or Facebook stories. However, to convert your storyboard frames into a video, banner ad, or other material, you have to go one step further.

6. Visualize your story

When you lay out your story, consider the technical characteristics of the platform on which you plan to publish content. For example, storytelling for Instagram should only be based on graphics and short videos with no text splash.

Visual storytelling for YouTube or TikTok can take the form of a series or a long film. At the same time, visual storytelling on the landing page should provide users with constant motivation to scroll down the page or follow CTA. So think about how the user will interact with your story and determine its shape, style, and scale.

Also use some proven rules for visual storytelling. First, use color and color contrasts to highlight the story's theme. Second, you strive for minimalism. Your pictures or videos shouldn't contain a single detail that doesn't matter in the story. Third, you control users' eyes by arranging elements on the image so that they can guide users along a specific visual hierarchy.

Bonus End: Here are some books that have helped me develop my visual storytelling skills: Visual storytelling: How to speak to the audience without saying a word by Morgan Sandler, graphic storytelling and visual storytelling by Will Eisner and The Power of Visual storytelling by Ekaterina Walter.


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