A step-by-step guide to visual content marketing

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These days, there are a number of content marketing strategies out there, some incredibly complex. But with complexity comes confusion, which can make it difficult for a strategy, or a process, to stick.

Visual Content Marketing Strategies

That’s why we’ve decided to share our Content Activation Model (CAM). It’s a simple, effective process that’s built from the ground up to make content marketing, also referred to as visual content marketing, easy to accomplish — not to mention less stressful.

Like anything in life, the more you practice something, the easier it becomes. And although CAM will immediately help streamline your visual content marketing efforts, it’s likely that you will see an even greater amount of efficiency over time as the process becomes second nature.

Your Content Activation Model is heavily supported by your digital asset management (DAM) software, which ultimately powers your CAM — providing greater visibility, access and control over all of your digital assets (content). With DAM and CAM, you’ll have all the tools you need to execute your marketing initiatives.

The Content Activation Model — a six-step process

One of the great things about CAM is the fact that each step is “bite-sized.” All you have to do is complete one step at a time until you’ve accomplished all six. Once done, the process will repeat.

The Content Activation Model & Visual Content Marketing

1) RESEARCH

The first step in the process is research, which helps you determine what content to create in the first place. Much like the scientific process, marketing research begins with a specific hypothesis that you wish to test. Past experiences, models from other companies, emerging technologies and new ideas are the types of things that feed into your hypothesis. At some point it might take the form of a question like, “what if we did [something awesome]?”

Visual Content Marketing Strategies CAM & Research

2) CREATION

Insights gleaned from research give you a clear purpose and direction for your story — making it possible to begin creating new, relevant content. This can include graphic design, web design, print campaigns, photography, videography, writing and more. It’s important to remember that the content you’re creating can be created for one or many purposes. In fact, we recommend repurposing content up to fifteen times.

Creation of Visual Content & the Content Activation Model

3) CURATION

Curation is the process of gathering existing content, sometimes referred to as “artifacts,” that can be added to your story. More and more, this includes social media and user generated content that supports the authenticity of your brand. When it comes to curation, the first rule is to make sure the assets you’re gathering are relevant and interesting. The second rule it to make certain you have permission to use it in your marketing initiatives!

Visual Content Marketing Strategies CAM & Curation

4) CONTEXT

This segment of the CAM is all about answering questions. Why are you putting this content on the web? As an audience member, why would I pay attention to your campaign and take action? How does this content align with our research findings? Is this correlation clear, compelling and relevant? Context is about giving your story a higher purpose than ROI.

Effective context fulfills a specific purpose by combining visual content with the right amount of story, emotion and facts so you can connect in meaningful ways with your audience.

Visual Content Context & the Content Activation Model

5) ACTION

Now, let’s put all this visual content and strategy to work!

In other words, step five is all about deploying content directly to mediums where you can measure shares, views, downloads and other metrics. If you haven’t done so already, you’ll need to identify what online, print and real-world channels you’ll want to share your visual content on. In other words, where are you most likely to connect with your audience?

Sharing Your Visual Content Marketing Campaigns

6) INSIGHTS

Insights give you a look into how content has performed and the value it provided to your audience and organization. Did you connect with people? What actions did they take? Why did you get these results and how could you improve on them? Everything you’ve done thus far was a test. Insights lets you know how successful those tests were. This is the time to adjust, or “tune-up” your efforts before you repeat the cycle.

The Content Activation Model & Analyzing Visual Content

Summary

That’s it! Our Content Activation Model offers a solid, clean way to look at your visual content marketing campaigns. But in order for this process to work, you’ll need to pair it with your digital asset management (DAM) system.

If DAM is new to you, feel free to check out our What is digital asset management page. Or, get in touch with a Widen advisor to discuss your organization’s DAM system needs further.

Thanks for checking out our Content Activation Model. We hope it helps!

Topics: Resources, Marketing

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