if a picture is worth a thousand words, then the story behind it may be worth a million more. just as our ancient ancestors once used cave drawings to illustrate stories of their great hunts and the conquests of neighboring tribes, visual storytelling has remained a powerful force for over 40,000 years. despite the emergence of new technologies and marketing channels to connect with consumers, no state of the art technology can substitute for state of the heart storytelling and rich visual imagery remains at the center of the most memorable and beloved stories.
as brands compete for air space in skies that are filled with noise, it’s the most visual images that capture our attention and brands that utilize rich imagery are the most successful at breaking through the clutter. no other brand on the planet, or the earth’s outer atmosphere for that matter, generated more buzz than redbull last year. the visual imagery of felix baumgartner in a redbull branded space suit and lunar module alone conveyed that redbull was up to something huge, extraordinary, and out of this world. the images that appeared via twitter and facebook looked compelling, intriguing, and fascinating prompting millions of people, many of whom have probably never consumed an energy drink, to tune in.
oreo’s ridiculously clever tweet during this year’s super bowl blackout was simple, smart, contextual, and perfect for that moment. it might not have been the prettiest product shot, but the illuminated cookie stood tall and garnered more attention than brands that paid in excess of seven figures for a share of the super bowl spotlight.
an image can be simple, complex, photoshopped, hipstomaticised, instagramed, pinned, tumbled, and then tweeted for the world to see. while our media consumption becomes increasingly more fragmented and our attention spans grow shorter it’s imperative to remember that by keeping it simple, relevant, visually engaging, and contextual to the medium that you’re giving your brand the best chance to stand out and be noticed.
Posted on February 20, 2013