The Power of Design-Led Content Marketing

Author Emma Knightley

In today’s world, digital marketers are in constant competition to gain the attention of their target audience. In order to try to stand out, marketers are creating more content than ever before. As a result, consumers are exposed to a deluge of content from multiple sources and can’t possibly read all the content they are interested in even if they wanted to.

For marketing professionals, this requires a rethinking about how to approach the challenge of effective content marketing. How can you get your message heard through all the other noise your prospects are being exposed to? What are the best formats to achieve that?

To help get past information overload, capturing a prospect’s attention may need to center around design and visuals.

The Effectiveness of Design-Driven Marketing

In a sea of constantly growing content, beautiful and creative design matters. For those who specialize in design, this is no surprise. According to research by Design Management Institute, companies who are driven by design outperformed the Standard & Poor’s 500 by over 200%.

The power and effectiveness of marketing led by design, which includes both market and product design, can’t be overstated. Design-led marketing can be the key that helps your brand rise above the noise and lead to a true competitive advantage.

How Can Content Marketing Become Design-Led?

For the most part, content marketing is driven by words. How can beautiful design be used in the world of content marketing to improve conversion? Fancy graphics, fonts, and images are a start, but there is more to it than that.

Creative design can be used as a tool to help to stimulate desire for your product or service. Eye-catching design combined with attention-getting words can clarify for your prospect what you have to offer and what makes your brand and your products or services unique and appealing. Most importantly it makes it very clear what action you want them to take.

The strategy of using design-led marketing needs to be applied to all aspects of your content marketing. This includes landing pages, websites, email campaigns and social media marketing. Innovative designs become a big part of your planning.

Creating Desire for Your Product or Service

Creating Desire for Your Product or Service

When you understand that increasing conversions with your design-led content marketing requires that you stimulate in your prospects interest and desire for your product or service, it becomes apparent that doing that begins with having a clear understanding of your target audience and what keeps them awake at night.

What problem do they have that you are seeking to solve? How can you communicate with them that your brand has the best solution?

Your task is to clearly demonstrate to your prospects that you understand their struggles and that you have devised a solution that can alleviate their pain or daily challenges. An effective design will clearly show them that you know exactly what they are going through and that you have come up with a unique and effective method of solving their problem.

Designing a Clear Call-to-Action

In content marketing, the design has to work with the words to motivate a prospect to take action. With graphics, images, and videos, you can clearly encourage a prospect to take the action that you want them to take.

It’s important to limit the number of choices that are offered because if a prospect is offered too many choices, they end up not making a choice and simply walking away. By reducing choices in your design, it becomes very clear to the prospect what they should do next, and it also becomes easier for you to convert. It’s difficult for words alone to be as effective.

Know Your Prospect

How well do you know your prospect? If you don’t have a clear image of who you are marketing to, it’s time to get that information. In order to understand your audience, conduct market research by interviewing customers, running surveys and encouraging engagement on social media.

What can you learn from your direct competitors? Can you gain a clearer picture of the wants, needs, and desires of your prospects from their interactions with your competitors?

Create a detailed and well-crafted audience persona because this information can guide every aspect of your marketing. Focus on the emotional aspects of your customer experience. Continually reinvent your marketing message in a way that improves connection and engagement.

The Value of Pictures

The Value of Pictures

A picture is worth much more than a thousand words, and this becomes apparent with design-led marketing. The average consumer is inundated with marketing messages just about everywhere they look. It’s hard to grasp all the words or try to absorb all the messages. If you’re going to be completely realistic, it simply can’t be done.

The challenge to marketers is to find a way to communicate a marketing message that will make your brand noticed and recognized. This is when marketers start to realize that images, graphics, and videos are much more effective and easier to notice and absorb than words.

You need to get your message across in a way that can be noticed quickly and absorbed just about as quickly, ideally at a glance. The best approach is to know exactly who you are talking to so that you can strive to create your messages in a way that your specific target audience can relate to. Relevant images and photos are much more relatable and noticeable than pages covered with nothing but text.

What Images Need to Portray

The more your landing pages and web pages clearly communicate the unique characteristics of your target audience; the more your conversions will improve. Both words and imagery need to be chosen and designed to portray a very targeted message. Here are some ways to portray your message with images:

  • Demonstrate that people just like them are using your product or service.
  • Show that people who are using your product or service are experiencing that their lives are clearly being enhanced because they are doing so.
  • Show your product in action in a way that captures the imagination
  • Clearly demonstrate that your product will remove pain and offer a solution to the challenges that they have been living with.

Visual Content Offers Shareability

Visual Content Offers Shareability

Since you know that getting the attention of your prospects isn’t always easy because there is so much competition, it’s important to keep in mind exactly what you are trying to do with your designs and visual content.

The heart of design-led marketing is simplicity. Visual content makes it easier for your prospects to understand and digest your marketing message. It also makes it easier for them to share your message with others. Rather than sharing a wordy message, they are sharing something that is visually stimulating and attractive.

The Art of the Infographic

Being able to see your message in a creative and easy to digest form such as an infographic makes it a lot less intimidating for your prospects. An infographic allows you to condense and consolidate your content into an attractive and easily absorbed format.

Social Media Today reports that visuals are processed as much as 60,000 times faster than text. People are much more likely to remember visuals than they are words. They are also much more likely to react and respond to information that is presented in a visually appealing way, such as an infographic.

Infographics are liked and shared much more often than any other type of content. By making your content visual, you are making it easier to share, easier to remember and easier to reference.

When a lot of information is condensed into a visually appealing infographic, the reader is not as likely to be intimidated or to have their eyes glaze over as they try to absorb your content. An interesting infographic snaps them out of boredom and awakens their interest. It’s a great way to simplify and demonstrate content that might be somewhat technical or difficult to digest.

Another challenge that marketers face is the fact that other marketers may be trying to present information that is very similar to what you are presenting. How can information be presented in a unique and appealing way? Infographics are important tools in this endeavor because they make content much more appealing and simplified. The information you present is not only much more noticeable, but it’s also more memorable and easily understood.

Final Thoughts

Beautiful and memorable designs have the power to get your brand noticed and recognized while captivating the attention and interest of potential customers. They also have the power to build lasting and meaningful relationships with the people you do business with.

Creativity in your design planning lends uniqueness and inspiration to the customer experience. Learning more about design and the impact it can have can take your content marketing to the next level. Keeping design up front in your marketing strategy creates memorability and loyalty, and is the best competitive advantage that you can have in the world of content marketing.

Emma Knightley