32 Types of Successful Visual Content

When faced with traditional or visual content, 91% of buyers prefer visuals. This can manifest in dozens, hundreds, even thousands of ways! Trying to categorize each and every type of visual content is a feat that, admittedly, may never truly be finished … but with that said, here’s a humble work-in-progress of 32 common pieces of visual content.

Branding:

1 – Brand Guidelines: Every brand needs established brand guidelines for colors, fonts, photo treatments, and more.

2 – Visual Language: This provides similar guidance to brand guidelines, as far as establishing look and feel, but generally only addresses visual content for a specific campaign as opposed to tone and guidance across your entire brand.

3 – Logo: If your logo is iconic and memorable, it can be an element of visual communication that is among the simplest in appearance — and the most complex in development.

Static, for Print or Web:

4 – Infographic: For web or print, infographics have become a classic format for telling a story or presenting information.

5 – Annual Report: Reports aren’t dead — they’re just visual now. Let visual communication guide your next report to improve engagement.

6 – Social Media Thumbnail: One way to use these is to provide a teaser of your motion graphic, infographic, report, or other collateral by including a key snippet or image sized for sharing on key social channels. However, they can also be standalone pieces that aren’t drawn from other collateral.

7 – Micronarrative: Micronarratives are similar to thumbnails, but are more focused on telling a story. A micronarrative series is comprised of several small pieces of visual content that all work together to tell a bigger story.

8 – Print Ad: For a broader audience in a particular location, transit ads, billboards, newspaper ads, etc., can have a huge impact.

9 – Digital Ad: A well-targeted banner ad can earn your audience’s attention before they even know they need your service.

10 – Visual Blog Post: If you’ve never tried adding visuals to your blog, this is a fun visual way to mix up the right post.

11 – Brochure: Summarize your company or product in a compact format that allows for multiple sections of info.

12 – Postcard: A great leave-behind at a conference or presentation, or a convenient snail-mail piece.

13 – Presentation Deck: How many dull slide presentations have you sat through — or even used in your own presentations? No more!

14 – eBook: Tell a story briefly, using visuals to drive the narrative but including text for detail. These can also be multimedia or interactive, which we’ll cover in the next section.

Interactive:

15 – Interactive Dashboard: When you have a lot of data to parse and monitor, keep it organized with a custom dashboard. These also help audiences have a more personalized experience — one that better fits their interests or needs.

16 – Widget: Calculators and training modules are examples of great uses for widgets.

17 – Websites/Landing Page: Never underestimate the power of a well-designed landing page in holding your audience’s attention.

18 – Microsite: Doing something a little different from your brand’s normal offerings? Try a microsite with a unique twist on your branding.

19 – App: Your app can create a memorable, repeatable experience for your audience. It should feel organic to your brand guidelines or visual language.

20 – Email Campaign: There are a variety of hosts and formats for email campaigns, but no matter what service you’re using, adding visuals and paying attention to layout can make a big difference.

21 – Augmented Reality: Overlay data and information on top of the real world for a cutting-edge experience.

22 – Virtual Reality: Take viewers outside of their real location, transporting them to a world of your design.

Video:

23 – Motion Graphic: This can be explaining something, promoting something, or designed to elicit emotion.

24 – Live-Action Hybrid: Incorporates live action with animation overlay, from lower-thirds (which may include the name and company of the person speaking) to illustrated overlay.

25 – Live-Action Video: All the real-life footage, none of the illustration.

26 – GIF: Perfect for social media, GIFs can break down portions of a motion graphic or infographic into bite-sized, one-stat animations.

Multimedia and Other Visuals:

27 – Workbench: A trusty collection of icons and illustrations that are specific to your brand and can be used across all types of collateral for your business.

28 – Data Visualization: While any of the mediums mentioned in this blog post can and often do incorporate data visualization, it can also be standalone — 1 data set visualized impactfully.

29 – Illustration: Just like data visualization, this is generally used in all of the other formats you see here, but in some cases it’s a central image that is the main focal point of the piece.

30 – Photography: Photos can make a powerful statement, whether on their own or in tandem with copy, illustration, data visualization, and more.

31 – Conference Booth: In a sea of nearly identical booths, having a custom, on-brand, eye-catching booth can make all the difference in attracting your audience at a trade show.

32 – Visual Training Tool: In general, these are made up of other deliverables you see above, such as motion graphics and interactive widgets. They deserve their own shout-out because they’re primarily internal tools that don’t have as much visibility among marketers, but can make a huge impact within your organization.

We’ll be the first to admit that this list probably doesn’t include everything. Is your favorite visual content missing? Let us know!

Lucy Todd

Author Lucy Todd

Lucy Todd is the Chief Process Officer at Killer Visual Strategies. She is a Seattle native and Western Washington University graduate. Her degree in Creative Writing and her customer service background both inform her work daily. A Killer employee since 2011 and executive since 2014, Lucy has researched for, written, and/or project-managed over 4,000 projects for the company, affording her key insight into our processes and projects. This experience is invaluable in allowing her to lead and empower Killer’s content and project management teams to success. Lucy enjoys managing the day-to-day at the office, offering a unique perspective when a team or colleague feels stuck, and learning from her peers and clients each day.

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