What story is your brand and content images telling?
The old adage that a picture can tell a thousand words is as accurate as it has ever been. In such a visual culture as we live in today, using images to promote your brand and your content will be vitally important. But what story is your brand and content images telling? And, more importantly, is it the narrative you are aiming for?
We can all have blind spots when it comes to perception and operate from unknown biases and stereotypes. Unfortunately, this can easily seep through when it comes to choosing imagery for your business. Something you might consider quite innocent (or haven’t considered at all) can quickly become offensive or off putting for your clients.
So here, we outline four considerations you should make before choosing your brand and content imagery.
Know your brand AND your buyer personas
Your aim in using images alongside your brand marketing or content creation is to enhance and reiterate your brand message. But, to be able to do this, you first need to be sure of exactly who your clients are.
When building out your buyer personas you need to consider the sort of images your target client will react well to. This can be a fine balance between images that reflect your business values, aims and objects and the expectations your clients will have about you and the industry you are in.
Pushing the boundaries of your images to diversify from your competition can be a great move that sets your business apart, but it needs to be planned and assessed as your do so.
If you are selling to more than one buyer persona, you will need to reflect this through your imagery, but make sure to watch for any clashes in narrative and loss of brand continuity.
Get a second opinion on the brand images you are using
Operating in a marketing bubble is never a good idea. Like most departments, marketing operates best in collaboration and certainly, when it comes to imagery, getting a second opinion can be very helpful.
Know your blind spots
We all have particular ways we view people and the world around us. They can be formed by how we have been brought up, the circles we move in, our social situation and our job etc. What is most important is to realise what your blind spots are. This will help you spot when your decisions are being influenced by your assumptions and allow you to market your business more professionally, inclusively and in a truly targeted way.
Closely evaluate stock images
It’s not just your blind spots that can be a problem. Many marketers will use stock images alongside their content and marketing assets. But these images have also been created by people who will have biases. They will also be created to sell, which usually means they are appealing to the dominant culture and pre-existing or cliché ideas about your industry. While this can be sometimes be helpful, stock images are not personal to your business or your ideal clients. So, it’s best to make sure you critically evaluate all stock images you intend to use against your buyer personas.
Putting across the wrong image of your brand can be costly for businesses. It can reduce engagement, devalue your brand message and, in the worst instances, alienate your clients. This is why taking the time to closely consider the images that will narrate your brand and engage your clients is vital.
If you are looking for advice and support to help you to effectively deliver your brand message, please do get in touch.