If you have tuned into this blog expecting me to extol relationship tips and ideas to spice up your marriage, then best leave now. What I will be discussing is the role of visual marketing in the customer buying process and the importance of cranking up the intensity of your visual marketing efforts.
The topic of visual marketing can be a broad one but generally, refers to any graphical representation of the company. This can take multiple forms:
- Company logo,
- Promotional material (flyers, brochures, business cards),
- Product design and packaging
- Print ads
- Online presence (homepage of a website, banner ads, social media posts)
- Physical retail presence.
It’s not, however, the broadness of concept companies need to worry about. Instead, it is the broadness of affect that results from a poorly executed visual presence which destroys any potential hint of attraction in the potential consumer.
Its important to remember that we are visual people and often form our first impressions based on what we see. This term in psychology is referred to as WYSIATI (what you see is all there is). Many studies have confirmed this theory of human behavior where our system one brain shuts off much of the information available to us. Our brain instead focuses on making instant judgement’s from the limited information available. This is a survival mechanism making it easier for our brains to function rather than opening our mind to the multiple streams of information hitting us risking brain overload. Daniel Kahneman’s book “Thinking Fast and Slow” will provide more insight into this phenomena for those whose curiosity has been peaked.
Many biases in the mind exist which often seem incomprehensible – attractive people are more likely to get a promotion, tall or muscular people are perceived to be leaders and overweight people are judged to have a poor work ethic. None of this is true or false it is just mere perceptions and judgements. We are not the logical people we believe ourselves to be and it is only in acknowledging this can we improve our decision making.
The role of visuals in marketing
So let’s exit the realms of psychology and back into marketing. We can establish as human beings we are a judgemental bunch and form impressions quickly without all the facts. In the context of business, this is fundamental to understand and digest the various peculiarities that must be understood in the customer buying process.
Let’s start with the company logo the first physical manifestation of the company the customer will see. What does it convey? Is it bland, boring and simple in direct opposition to your company’s identity as innovative and creative? Is it amateurish or poorly designed? This creates judgements like it is not very successful or professional and has a poor attention to detail. Consequently, the brain perceives they pose a substantial risk for investing their faith, trust and hard earned money in anticipation of a high-quality service or product.
When I created my logo I wanted people to instantly recognize that my company will be different to the rest. I chose the name BXT as an abbreviation for “be extraordinary”. It was also a unique name and easy to read and remember. The name also represents the company’s mission which is to help our clients to express their difference and get audience attention through extraordinary visual marketing. Personally, it also stood for the innate creativity that lies often dormant inside all of us. Few of us realize it but we are all inherently creative in our own ways. Unfortunately many haven’t found a medium to express this or a craft that strikes their passionate side. The plane forming out of the clouds in the logo represents ideas taking flight from dreams and visions to reality and physical manifestation.
Visually telling your unique story
I hope by now I have conveyed that brands must examine all their advertising efforts and make sure they are congruent with their own mission and values. Do they scream loud and clear who you are and what you do? Visuals are a hot subject in marketing right now with many companies starting to understand the vital role they will play in telling their story. Millennials like me are especially time-poor and don’t want to read about your story or hear it. JUST SHOW ME. Just show me across multiple platforms subtlety reminding me of your product or service if ever I need it.
This still does not solve many brands dilemmas involving how they can visually tell their story so people will see it. Creativity is the answer. Currently, in such a tech-heavy and time poor world, it is incredibly difficult to get attention. This is mainly due to people no longer looking at what’s around them and instead solely on their destination or end goal. To grab attention one must be creative and stand out from the crowd diverting their eyes from the latest tweet or Facebook post.
Being different is the only solution when every brand seems to be the same. Does your advertising and marketing express your unique difference? If not then why not turn your visual marketing lights on and put the spotlight on your brand.