Visual Storytelling 101
Jul 14, 2021 Laura Garofalo
In PR we understand the power of words and storytelling—but often it’s visuals that bring stories to life.
📖 Instagram slides and Twitter cards make complex stories more digestible and accessible.
▶️ Videos hold our attention when words don’t.
😂 Memes break up our feeds with entertainment.
📷 And posts with photos of real people perform. Why? Because they’re authentic.
Your visual identity is just as important as your messaging and content. Here are eight visual storytelling tactics that work:
☑️ Real photography. Want to stay authentic (and help recruit top talent)? Use real images and videos of your team instead of stock ones. Show your culture, smarts and lived values. Lean on apps and filters for editing if you don’t have a designer. And if you’re in a pinch, Unsplash is a good option for free, high-res images.
☑️ Bold typography. Make a statement with oversized lettering— it draws attention without overwhelming users with daunting amounts of content. Save the full context for the caption.
☑️ Cards and slides. Want to make educational content more accessible? Consider carousels to break up the text. More brands are using them, particularly on Instagram, to explain complex topics such as the history of Juneteenth. They also work well for sharing resources or spotlighting employees. And we love a good quote card to amplify thought leadership while staying on brand.
☑️ Data visualization. Make complex data simple (and shareable)! What’s the story behind the numbers? Make sure your audience can connect the dots.
☑️ Less color is more. Need calming aesthetics after being cooped up inside? We do too. Mono and duo color palettes can give a website or graphic a unified effect. Try Earth-tone color schemes for a minimalist vibe (hint: they aren’t just for eco-friendly brands any more.)
☑️ Motion graphics. Animated videos can help explain hard-to-understand concepts. The best part? You set the tone (pro tip: aim to be smart and funny). Throw a few GIFs in the mix to spice up static images.
☑️ Text videos. Another way to convey an idea without having to shoot film. A voiceover gives an assist so viewers don’t feel like they have to keep up, while the movement can help emphasize the messages.
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