5 Visual Marketing Mistakes All Businesses Should Avoid

December 7, 2021

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Visual marketing uses images, videos, animations, and other visual content for marketing purposes. Good visual marketing can help you communicate your message and reach your audience.

But visual marketing involves lots of moving parts that need to be perfectly coordinated. So, you need foreknowledge of potential pitfalls to run a successful campaign.

Keep reading to find out those visual marketing mistakes you need to avoid to run a successful visual marketing campaign.

people running

1. Not having a defined visual marketing goal and strategy

If you don’t have a visual marketing strategy, you can’t possibly ensure the success of your campaign. You’d probably be just shooting in the dark. Since you don’t have a plan, you’ll just do whatever you can and hope to get the best results.

That, however, is a surefire way to fail in your visual marketing. Every good campaign has a goal and a strategy that needs to be followed to reach that goal. That goal should be aligned with your overall business objective.

Let’s say your brand is looking to increase sales for November. You might decide to launch a visual marketing campaign in line with that sales objective. So, a goal for your visual marketing campaign might be to get more people to go to your website so they can potentially make purchases.

Your strategy should help you achieve that goal. You need to determine which channels will generate the most traffic and create content for those channels.

traffic jam

2. Being inconsistent in your visual style

If you’re inconsistent in your visual style, you’ll only confuse your audience. An audience confused about what your brand stands for will find it hard to connect with your brand. You cannot expect a disconnected audience to purchase products or services from you.

From the get-go, your brand should have a visual style that best represents you. The colors, fonts, and illustration style you use should reflect your brand values. Once you’ve settled on a brand image, stick to it regardless of the platform. If your audience sees your post on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, for example, they’ll automatically know it was you behind those posts. This is a great way to build your brand on social media.

Across the marketing channels, the visuals must be consistent and high quality.

people painting and drawing

3. Not testing your visuals

If you don’t test your visuals, how will you know if they are any good? Even the best creatives get tunnel vision on some projects. Since they’re already familiar with the brand, you’ll need to test your visuals on your target audience. You can do this through A/B testing. This process involves changing your campaign material one element at a time, testing it on your audience, and comparing the results with the original.

In this case study , Humana wanted to improve the click-through rate of its banner. So, it ran two versions to determine which works better.

After A/B testing, Humana found the audience prefers less text and a much cleaner layout. They retained the second version based on the results, which yielded a much higher click-through rate.

Aside from banner ads and landing pages, you can also perform A/B testing on your email templates. You may use Gmail extensions to track mail open and click-through rates for different versions of your marketing emails.


4. Putting too much information in one visual

Make sure the visuals you use for your campaigns are visually appealing in the first place. That’s the only way you can get people to stop and look at your content. If they don’t look at your content, after all, then your visual marketing campaign will have failed.

So, make sure you don’t put too much information in one visual. The text and imagery should complement, not overwhelm each other. The example below shows us what not to do when creating visuals for your brand.

I’m sure you’d agree that there’s just a lot going on in the infographic that it’s challenging to decide where to look first. The information gets lost in the design. 

The key is to know the proper way of balancing those two. In general, make sure the font you use is legible. The pictures and the text should complement each other. Also, the rule of thumb is – the simpler, the better.

person painting

5. Not adding a strong CTA

There’s no point in having great visuals if the audience doesn’t know the action you want them to take. After all, while visual marketing aims to get people to look at your content, its primary aim is ultimately to get people to take your desired action. A call-to-action (CTA) will help you achieve that goal.

A solid CTA starts with a command. The command, however, should be clear, enticing, and unambiguous. A generic “Go!” isn’t as exciting or convincing as “Buy now and save”, and it leaves the user confused about what will happen next.  

Try starting your call to action with a command  and use fun, enthusiastic, and explicit language to sell the promotion. Make sure the copy explains why the promotion has value to the customer.

three women

Wrapping up 

You need to follow a strategy to ensure your visual marketing campaign is a success. You learned what mistakes to avoid from this article.

Make sure you have a clear goal for your project and ensure you’re consistent with your visual style. Create a solid call to action. Finally, test your visuals and track your performance. 

Avoid making common mistakes, and your visual marketing campaign will yield your desired results.

About the author

David Campbell is a digital marketing specialist at Ramp Ventures. He helps manage the content marketing team at Right Inbox. When he’s not working, he enjoys traveling and trying to learn Spanish.

David Campbell

David Campbell

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