If you want to attract more engagement and interest in your content today, supporting that content with engaging visuals is essential.
For example, Twitter published research in 2014 that indicated that including a photograph in Tweets resulted in a 35 percent boost in re-Tweets and including a video resulted in 28 percent more re-Tweets.
We have also seen the increase in importance of video in social media content, from the ability to upload native video to Twitter of up to 10 minutes duration through to the multiple formats of video content we can share on Facebook to increase visibility and engagement of organic content.
Over the last couple of years, I like many other small business owners have been using their mobile devices more to create visual content from animated gifs to videos, from live streaming content to quote graphic.
In fact, most weekends I find myself spending time test driving new apps for visual content creation – some of them of course get deleted quickly, while others become a core part of my workflow. As an example, all the videos and images I created to promote my live event for Safer Internet Day this week were created with my phone. Some examples can be seen below.
Parents learn how to keep your teens safe when using #Snapchat, Periscope and #Facebook Live – 1 pm today #SID2016
Are you aware of #Snapchat privacy features? https://t.co/RAFV8uJe0T @Ginicanbreathe shares her tips #SID2016
Delighted that lawyer @kevinpoulter & comms expert @HilaryJSteel are guests https://t.co/RAFV8uJe0T #SID2016 event
I often share visual marketing updates to my social networks, such as the recent update on Instagram that allows us to add up to five accounts without logging in and out to switch accounts. Again those tips are usually created on my phone as you can see below:
NEW on Instagram – applies to V 7.15 for iOS and Android Now you can add up to 5 Instagram accounts within the app without logging in and out. Go to your profile settings to add an additional account as you can see in the screen shots. Once you have added the additional accounts you can tap your username at the top of your profile to switch between accounts. You will see your profile photo appear in places throughout the app so you can always tell which one you’re using at the time. I know this has been a long wished for feature – will you put it to use in your business?
In a mini workshop I delivered this week about visual marketing I decided to use emoji for half of my slides – and yes some of the other slides included animated gifs. Why emoji? Well we need to become more ’emoji literate’ as they are being used increasingly in communications from brand campaigns to the recent move by Facebook to soon introduce six emoji reactions as an alternative response to the Like button.
And don’t forget that the Oxford dictionary announced their Word of the Year for 2015 was an emoji.
Smartphone Apps For Visual Content Creation
If you are just getting started in creating visual content using your smartphone you may be wondering what apps to get started with.
I have curated a list of apps that you can use to edit photos, create image quotes, create collages, record and edit video and live stream content. I have selected these apps as most work across iOS and Android phones (with one exception – I had to include separate video apps) and most have a free option. I always recommend trialing the free version for an app but then if you find it works, move to the paid version that allows you to make sure your visual content does not have the app developers watermark on it.
As a bonus, I have added a web based app that allows you to create animated gifs from your video.
Access the recommended apps for your iPhone here.
Access the recommended apps for your Android phone here.
One app that I use all the time – and while it does not help me create and edit visual content it allows me to easily move files between my phone and computer and access those files from anywhere – is Dropbox where you can access a free account – I highly recommend it for your visual content creation workflow. I have become so reliant on Dropbox for my business as I use it to send content to clients and my video and podcast editor that I now have a premium account.
I hope these resources help you in starting to use your smartphone to create visual content for your digital marketing campaigns. Remember you can contact me if you have questions about how to integrate visual content marketing into your communications. And do share your visual creations – I would love to see what you create.