We recently came out with a new Freesource post on Canva, the non-designers tool for design. If you didn’t get a chance to read that post, you can do that HERE, but suffice to say that we love Canva and think it’s a great free tool to significantly enhance your pet store’s marketing and branding capabilities.
But what really makes your visual content, your imagery, and your graphic branding important? Today we’ll get into some nitty gritty data-based (always) trends that will get our point across: the internet and it’s users have shifted from “tell” to “show.” We’ll also give you 5 ways to leverage powerful visuals to upgrade your pet store’s content creation. Want us to do it for you? We totally will.
Why Tell When You Can Show?
Did you know that when people hear information, they're likely to remember only 10% of that information three days later? However, if a relevant image is paired with that same information, people retained 65% of the information three days later. (Source: BrainRules)
Some more numbers to back it up:
Facebook posts with images see 2.3X more engagement than those without images. (Source: BuzzSumo)
58% of consumers prefer visual-first content, with their main preferences being graphics and images and produced video. (Source: SproutSocial)
32% of marketers say visual images are the most important form of content for their business, with blogging in second (27%). (Source: SocialMediaExaminer)
To be completely frank, if you have not noticed the uptick in visual content across nearly every single social media platform (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google, Reddit) and the inexorable rise of visual-dominant platforms (Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, Tumblr), then you really haven’t been paying much attention! Not the end of the world, really, but if you want to stay in touch with what’s going on in the digital space around your pet store, you should give us a follow and join our free community of pet store owners.
Leveraging Visuals Content For Your Pet Store
So, you’re bought in now right? Completely, unequivocally convinced that one of the best ways to improve your pet store’s online marketing strategy is to utilize more visuals with every post. Perfect, we’re here to help and give you some easy ways to make your shift from “tell” to “show” a bit easier to manage.
Never, Ever Do: Make a Text-Only Post
Never say never right? At Pet Engine Marketing we tend to stay away from these extreme generalized rules because typically there’s an exception to everything, but we’re pretty serious about this one. There’s just no point in posting text only - it will get swallowed up and discarded by the social media machines.
It’s simple: use visuals. Here are some ideas:
Phones down in your store? Quick Google search for “dogs on phone” will get you a few hundred hilarious results that can be used. Closed for July 4th? Grab a photo of your cat off your phone, apply some patriotic graphics with Canva, and you’re good to go. Which brings us to…
Create Your Own Content
Original items made by a professional like those at Pet Engine are generally going to look a bit better than haphazardly throwing something together in Microsoft Paint, or letting one of your pet store’s employees handle the visual content marketing. Want the cheaper option? We gave it to you with Canva. Here’s some ideas for original visual content:
Tell Your Story
Are you a Harry Potter fan? If not, you should still check this out because it’s a masterful piece of storytelling, and if you are, then I think you’ll remember the scene in The Deathly Hallows when Hermione reads the story of the three Peverell brothers.
The point here is that the filmmakers could have let Hermione just read it and forced the audience to come up with our own imagination. Instead, they used the story to truly create a work of art.
You can do the same for your pet store and your story as a pet store owner. Show us your dreary beginnings, your first customers, your best events, and so on. There is no doubting that we respond quickly, and emotionally to images. Use this to your advantage. Showcase your story, the “why” behind your business, with images, wherever possible.
Crowdsource Content from your Community
Sometimes it seems to us that social media were unintentionally built for pets and pet parents. People love to share photos of their pets. These pets unknowingly take on online identities of their own, transforming the social personas of their owners. It’s remarkable.
As a pet store, every single one of your customers is a pet parent. Simply asking them to share photos of their pets that morning, that weekend, right now…they’ll do it! Posting and sharing customer content is a great way to connect your pet store with their online audience.
Keep it Fresh
Mix it up. We’re not advocating that you break something that’s working, but don’t be afraid to try some new things. Here’s some ideas you may not have thought of:
Text overlays (quotes, testimonials, giveaways, job postings, etc.)
It’s hard to consistently come up with compelling, winning visual content! It’s okay to simply repost and share stuff that’s already winning on these platforms, we just wouldn’t make too much of a habit of it.
More and more visual content is taking over social media. The dreary text-based posts are just that: boring and lost in the swarm. Our team here at Pet Engine Marketing can help you come up with visual content that drives engagement, or we recommend you get going on your own with the in-platform features that we’re seeing on Instagram or Snapchat or by using a tool like Canva. To put it bluntly, your content doesn’t have to and shouldn’t look bad! If it does, we can take it off your hands and turn it into one of your pet store’s strengths. We’ll get that marketing strategy back on path.