When it comes to helping define what your brand stands for and, by association, helping potential customers or clients see whether you’re a good fit for each other or not, visual content curation is a hugely effective solution.
While I’m not sold on the current trend that “to be a successful brand, you need to be a storyteller” – both Sam Fiorella and Hessie Jones offer valid opinions as to why this isn’t the case – I won’t dispute how a brand’s story can add to the overall appeal.
Knowing the history of a brand, what made it the success it is today, and how this has defined their culture of success, can tell us a lot about the culture of the organization in question. For some customers, that can be the final persuasive factor in giving that brand their business.
Since humans by nature are very visual creatures, the ability for brands to share their story in a more appealing way than simple news clippings and print publications seems a no-brainer.
Two companies who agree are Vizify and Clipsi.
Vizify – A Life Told in Rich Media
In the company’s own words, Portland, Oregon-based Vizify is a “graphical bio” or “visual representation of you”. From their website on why you should use Vizify:
Like it or not, people look you up online before they interview, hire, or date you. Make sure they see your best.
Now while I’m not sure if having a visual representation of yourself for would-be suitors to view you is a great idea, especially in this looks-driven world we live in today, the rest of Vizify’s premise makes perfect business sense.
For job-seekers, it’s a great way to present yourself and your social footprint to potential future employees. By the same token, it’s a great way for headhunters and recruiters to see if a potential candidate is right for the client they represent.
Going a little deeper, and brands can use Vizify to showcase not only their mantra, but how they uphold that online.
While the format is a little more suited to a more visual presentation of a resume, the same features that make up Vizify from a personal angle can also be utilized for a business or brand.
- Multiple Twitter accounts can show the diversity of your company’s approach to social, from customer service to support to FAQs and more.
- Images can share corporate events, team building, awards, employee news and milestones, as well as customer satisfaction stories.
- Videos can highlight the topics you discuss online as well as the people who influence your brand, to show if there’s a correlation for a potential customer.
In addition to these, there’s a nifty Words feature that shows the words you use the most, which gives a great indication of whether your brand’s expertise or areas of interest tie in with those of your customers. As you can see by the image below, if anyone’s interested in talking influence with their mates, I might be your guy!
Additionally, for any customer looking to do some more digging on your brand, Vizify offers a handy Links feature that connects the dots to your online footprints.
Throw in the ability to customize to your brand’s design and some basic analytics behind how your content is being viewed, and Vizify offers a clean and simply way to showcase what your brand’s about when it comes to social.
Clipsi – The New Corporate Media Room
There have been numerous ways to create an online news room that highlights your company’s most important news, milestones and achievements, but recently released Clipsi offers a slick take on it.
By grabbing text or images – or clippings, for the old school amongst us, including me – from either public web pages, or documents from your Dropbox account, Clipsi then lets you arrange them to present an informative and interactive newsroom.
As you can see by the embedded example below, which Neicole Crepeau – the driving force behind Clipsi – kindly put together for me around the topic of the Influence Marketing book.
By collating quotes from blogs, interviews as well as directly from the book, and the research that took place around the case studies and technology vendors in the influence marketing space, this particular Clipsi offers a pretty good feel for the direction the book takes.
However, as cool as the newsroom offering is, it’s where Clipsi is taking steps beyond just offering a public-facing news curation area, and looking to make the platform a true team tool for cross-collaboration, that things get really interesting.
Say you want to create a report or marketing strategy based on what you know about today’s marketplace and where your brand fits in. With Clipsi, you could create a team research board, invite colleagues from relevant departments, and collectively collate any data you feel offers insights into the topic at hand.
With instant visual reference points, as well as clickable links to take you directly to the source, Clipsi moves from being an effective newsroom into a research-driven strategic solution. The example board below, “Social Media is Crack”, is a great example of this approach.
Statistics, research links, authority reports and sources ensure the most up-to-date analysis for your team, which in turn means the most up-to-date reports for your company’s leadership team.
Described by Neicole as “Pinterest for business”, the analogy is apt – yet, for me, Clipsi offers much more of a business solution than the popular image curation board it’s compared to.
Clipsi is currently in beta – you can find more details here.
The Media is the Message
There’s no doubt that businesses are using visuals more in their content creation. Twitter’s introduction of Cards, and the redesigned Google+ and Facebook interface that favours rich media, shows this trend is only going to continue.
As brands look to compete in an ever-noisy space, the ability to show and tell versus just tell is a key ally. Vizify and Clipsi understand this and are helping redefine how we both represent and consume information.
While blogs and social accounts will continue to help these brands position themselves to their would-be customers or future employees, the ability to go a little deeper from a central point makes that positioning a little more attractive on both sides.
Where the media truly is the message, don’t let your brand miss out on sharing its version.