Visual Content All Stars
We love hearing from social media followers here at Inbound Marketing Agents, and one of the best questions to cross my Twitter interactions recently was a call for some examples of brands that are getting it really right when it comes to inbound marketing. While social media role models are a powerful tool, for some of us, we're looking to hear about some brands that haven't gotten as much attention for their marketing. Many of us know that Birchbox, Oscar de La Renta and Taco Bell are social media stars, but who else?
Since there are quite a few examples of brands doing inbound marketing well, we've decided to touch on just brands that do visual content well today. Images, infographics and video trump text content on social media - videos are 12 times more likely to be shared on Facebook than text. We're always looking for examples of lesser-known brands and big-name brands that are getting it all right. Here are three rockstar examples of brands with strategy we can't help but love.
Sweetgreen is a Washington D.C.-based salad and yogurt-shop and their rockstar status as inbound marketing masters is apparent from the moment you hit their homepage and see an infographic about salad:
The infographic isn't data-driven or especially complicated, but it's really appealing. Visitors to the website can replicate the salad in their own home, and even see where the famously-sustainable restaurant sources their cantaloupe. Visual content is a really critical part of an Inbound Marketing strategy, and Sweetgreen has created something that's irresistible. Their salad infographic is prime to stand out in a Pinterest feed.
Something else irresistible about Sweetgreen is the fact they're active members of Instagram, and use the network to really spotlight their fans. Sweetgreen shares fan content on a regular basis, as was seen on their Facebook page a few days ago:
Here's a not so-little secret: your clients love being appreciated. They love it when you say thank you and spotlighting followers on social media is an awesome way to be appreciative. There's no better way to say "thank you" and spark engagement than sharing your fans' artwork and Instagram photos. Featuring your fans will inspire future engagement. Alternative American alternative musician Amanda Palmer does something similar: she has two entire galleries on her website dedicated to Instagram images and fan artwork.
It's not hard to develop a serious admiration for Sweetgreen's inbound marketing of visual content. Between driving fan engagement by sharing Instagram photos and using infographics to describe products, this DC salad shop is a master at multi-media content that's perfectly primed for social sharing.
Vibrams are probably the world's most divisive shoe. You either hate them or you own four pairs. For the uninitiated, they're "minimalist footwear," tight-fitting toe shoes that have been adopted by fans of barefoot running and CrossFit. Vibrams uses social media incredibly well, and they've built a cult following. They post often on Facebook, and it's always incredibly visual, stunning content, as seen in the recent image from their Facebook timeline.
Vibrams has also started a new social media campaign focused on spotlighting some of their big-name fans through video content, which is shared on YouTube, Facebook and the company website. The image below, a video of beach volleyball player Stafford Slick is part of their "What's Your Story" campaign which is a social media hit. At the time of writing, it had 210,000 Facebook likes.
Turns out, pen manufacturer Sharpie is really quite good at social media and fan engagement. They recently ran a contest for an all-new logo "Fuse" logo design on social media, welcoming fan contributions drawn in what else - sharpies. The submissions were stunning, the prizes were great and the competition was fierce:
Sharpie really hit a home run with their logo design, connecting with artists and getting some outright awesome ideas for their visual content marketing as an added bonus. Uploaded fan art is abundant on the Sharpie page, and this community-based approach has earned them more than a few points: at the time of writing, they had over 3.1 million fans on Facebook.
In case we didn't mention it, visual content is a pretty big deal. In fact, Pinterest users follow more brands than Twitter or Facebook - if you're companies not taking advantage of this visually-driven platform for content sharing you really should. Pinterest drives more traffic than Twitter, LinkedIn, StumbleUpon and Google+! In fact you can't afford to go social without a clear plan for visual content. No designer, photographer or videographer on staff? No problem. Video content doesn't have to have a Hollywood budget, sometimes minimalist infographics are all you need and inviting your artistically talented fans to share really works.
We'll be sharing more examples of inbound marketing all stars in coming weeks, but in the meantime, take inspiration from Sweetgreen, Vibrams and Sharpie to get started with visual!
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