Think about an ad that truly resonated with you — whether a print ad, a video marketing campaign or even a quick post on social media.
The colors, the graphics, the smooth lines that create one cohesive image of emotion.
We’re willing to bet that one of the biggest reasons why you still remember it so well (and found it persuasive and impactful) is because you had some kind of response which was set ablaze within.
In some way, the ad reminded you of an experience you’ve been through, a person that touched you, or even a mountain you climbed for a time.
Great ads tell stories. They are much more than just a cold pitch. They draw you in from the depths of the unconscious.
Welcome to the world of visual storytelling marketing, where things like videos, photographs, GIFs, and other graphics bring emotions to life.
Let’s talk about the next big thing in storytelling marketing.
Then, we’ll tell you where you can go to bring the visual storytelling trends to life in the mind’s eye of your audience.
1. User-Generated Storytelling
Online reviews have hit the internet like a massive web, connecting people from around the world to products and services.
About 84% of consumers feel that online reviews from strangers are just as reputable and helpful as buying advice and brand recommendations from their friends and family.
Perhaps that’s why one of the biggest visual storytelling trends of the moment is user-generated narrative content.
Today’s consumer wants to feel like they’re getting the “real story.” the story which exists from hearts and minds of your best clients.
People want to buy lifestyles and belief systems that are similar to their own.
The key is to show them what they need through the eyes of the consumer. Let them hear about your product or service from people just like them.
This theory speaks for itself.
Go ahead and take a look at the incredible impact of influencer marketing to see how well it works.
Feature snippets of photos and videos your customers have shared on social media, make it personal, make it real.
Create story-based ads where a client speaks directly about how your products/services have made a positive impact on their lives.
These are just a few ideas, now let’s explore what’s rising on the horizon.
2. Serial Video Marketing
There’s a reason why sequels and remakes of famous films fizz in the minds of movie lovers begging them to head back for a fresh glance.
Why else do you think movie franchises are so popular? — because today’s consumer wants the story to continue, just like our own lives continue on ever-changing.
Serial marketing, or stories that stretch out over the course of several ad campaigns, are an especially big part of current video storytelling trends.
Consumers feel like they “know” and “root for” the characters in your marketing campaigns when their story stretches out.
They want to see what happens next, and they even form an emotional connection to the stars of your ads.
This method of video marketing shouldn’t be limited to just one type of medium, either.
Have the characters (or real customers) from your ads take over your brand’s social media accounts for a day while you also run a video ad or even print campaign telling a part of their story.
Consumers will get attached to these characters — and to your brand — as a result.
3. Data-Driven Storytelling
Who is your audience? Are they mainly female? Male?
Do you know their age range?
Data-driven storytelling is yet another one of today’s biggest communication trends.
This shouldn’t come as much of a shock, as there is more data available than ever before (we’re talking over 40,000 Google searches in a single second.)
Yes, part of data-driven storytelling is understanding how to look at your data and create content that you know your market is the most likely to respond to.
But it’s also about sharing the data you’ve uncovered with them — and making them a part of the story as a result.
Think of including an illustrated or animated infographic in your next video campaign. This is a great way to increase your brand’s authority and prove the points you’re making at the same time.
It might sound a bit silly at first, but large swaths of data also show customers that they’re not the only one experiencing these issues or looking for a specific solution.
People follow the crowd.
4. Mini-Ads for Today’s Attention Span
It’s official: the human attention span is even shorter than a goldfish’s.
Can you capture it?
In the blink of an eye, can you grasp it?
That’s why you are here on this blog, to figure out how.
The key is to instantaneously spark curiosity within your market, and allow them to see themselves in the subjects of your ad campaigns.
Colorful images that ignite emotional response, playful graphics, unique ideas.
What has a view never thought of before that will spark their minds and light it aflame with passion?
Any way you slice it, however, you have to create content that can grab a consumer’s attention instantly — and keep it until you’re able to get your message across.
To make this happen, you need to shorten your ads and keep content digestible.
Think about how your ad will stand out and make your market stop and engage with your content when they’re scrolling through their social media feeds. Rely on images more than text, and video more than written content.
You can thank an influx of content, an increase in the number of ways we consume media and even a boost to the number of specific outlets we have to choose from to get this message out.
5. Immersive Storytelling
In today’s world, consumers aren’t just looking for background noise when it comes to advertisements.
Think about it. There is background noise lighting up every home across the world from Bangkok to New York.
How will your voice immerse and break through the sea?
With a transformative experience that improves on their reality or transports them to a different one altogether.
Thanks to both augmented and virtual reality, this is now more possible than ever.
Customers don’t just get to watch someone else’s story. Now, they get to live it for themselves.
Use augmented reality to let them digitally try on clothing, or rely on virtual reality to let them get behind the wheel of the car you’re selling.
Introduce virtual characters that reveal clues and teach them more about your products and services at the same time.
You should even gamify the situation and let them connect with other users to further enrich the story.
Connecting online is, after all, a web. Trickling down the network and connecting back to you.
It’s Time to Bring Visual Storytelling Trends to Life
Whether you want to give immersive storytelling a try, or if you’re ready directly involved with your consumers in the marketing process, we hope this post on the latest visual storytelling trends has left you inspired.
Of course, you may not have the time, the equipment, or the expertise to pull off the marketing techniques we’ve covered here on your own.
Don’t worry — we’re here to make it happen for you.
To dig into the depths of the unconscious mind of your clients and set it ablaze.
Check out more of our work to get more of an idea of what we’re able to create.
We’re here to take your web design strategy, video marketing plan, and much more to the next level.