5775 Ways Brands Are Using Visual Content

Storytelling with Pictures

Visual content isn’t new. It’s been there since ages. Cavemen drew pictures on cave walls to tell their stories.

Pictographs were used in ancient Egypt and China to communicate. It was a form of recordkeeping in the Indus River Valley and Sumer during the Neolithic Era.

Lewis Carroll’s ‘The Mouse’s Tale where text takes the visual form of what’s being described.

Humans of New York – The wildly successful photo blog captures the everyday New Yorkers and their stories. It’s a #1 NYT bestselling book now.

Storytelling, Pictures & Brands

Let’s see how brands are using images to connect with their audience on different social media platforms.

5 brands that’re killing it with pictures on Facebook 

1) GE

Lots of technology & innovation-related images.

The visuals are not product promotions. They’re facts/product info depicted in a manner that piques the user’s attention.

2) Kitkat

Have a break, have a Kit Kat. This pretty much sums up the confectionery brand’s visual content strategy.

3) Microsoft

And you thought R&D stood for Research & Development? A different take on what most of us do from #5 to 9.  

Another one

Old business acronyms but new meanings.  

4) HBO

Brilliant images with a dash of promotion – that’s what the HBO’s Facebook page is all about.


NASA’s  global selfie campaign was a stupendous success. The US space agency’s Facebook page is filled with images that catch the user’s attention and engage them.

7 brands that’re killing it with pictures on Instagram

1) Starbucks

Starbucks with more than 3 million followers has a vivid account. The coffee giant is known for finding photos posted by its fans and then re-sharing them.

#Howwemet is another example of how Starbucks is making the most of user-generated visual content.  It asked photographers in 8 countries to capture stories of couples on how they met. Here’s one of the entries.

2) National Geographic

National Geographic is known for posting content that resonates with its users. One such example is Selfies with Animals. A visual treat for animal lovers – the perfectly-angled ads showed animals taking selfies in the bathroom mirror.

The text on the pictures read “There are lots of terrible animal pictures out there,” directing people to find the best photos on National Geographic. Silvio Medeiros the art director of the campaign told DesignBoom “The whole idea is to show people that even during “selfies” and “instagram” fever, decent images can still be produced. Now that anybody has access to mobile phones with good cameras, we can all be photographers.”

3) Espirit

The fashion brand took the engagement level on its Instagram page with #Myeverydayamazing campaign.

4) Warby Parker

The trendy glasses company held “Insta-Walks” in NYC for its fans. The company invited its fans at the company’s headquarters and from there they were asked to take a walk to rooftop of the Gansevoort in the Meatpacking District where Warby Parker hosted a cocktail party. The fans were asked to take photos along the way. Over 670 photos with the hashtag #warbywalk were taken by the fans.  These photos were all linked back to Warby Parker’s Instagram page.

5) #MyCalvins

Models, Hollywood A-listers & famous fashion writers took to Instagram with their half-naked snaps clad in CK, and the hashtag #MyCalvins. It took the visual content sharing platform by storm. Well when you’ve Rita Ora, Jessica Hart, Miranda Kerr, Emily Weiss posting some seriously hot and chic #MyCalvin pictures, what else do you expect?

Soon the public followed the suit and Calvin Klein engaged more than 6 million fans. The best photos posted by the general public were sourced by the marketing teams and were republished on the Calvin Klein website.

6) Benefit Cosmetics

Smile’s the best makeup a girl can ever wear.  That’s what drives the content strategy for the cosmetics maker. From how-tos, LOLworthy quotes to some amazing product snaps – their content is fun, quirky and engaging.

7) Heineken

Their Crack the US Open photo hunt was a massive hit. The beer brand stitched 200 photos and created a mosaic of fans sitting in the stadium. The user had to flip their phone to 90 degrees and scroll through the mosaic to search clues in the captions on the photos. A series of clues were posted; the users had to follow them to find the last photo and comment the codeword in the caption.

7 brands that’re killing it with pictures on Pinterest

1) Skinny Mom

A visual destination for the women who love all things healthy. With boards ranging from fitness tips, skinny recipes to travel and romance – the page is an inspiration and useful resource for women.

2) Honda #Pintermission

A super campaign targeting the most influential pinners. Honda reached out to 5 pinners with a massive following and challenged them to a #Pintermission. A 24 hour break from pinning to bring something from their boards to life. To help the pinners complete their chosen activities, Honda gave each of them $500.

The focus of the pins were Honda CRV – a car definitely targeted towards women. And majority of Pinterest’s users are women. A study by RJ Metrics revealed that 92% of all pins are made by women.

3) Peugeot Panama

In Panama the French car brand ran a Pinterest-based puzzle depicting different car models, with pieces missing. The participants had to find the missing pieces on Peugeot Panama Facebook page or website. They had to pin the on their own boards and share it with Peugeot.

4) Uniqlo Dry Mesh

Uniqlo’s unique way of promoting its dry mesh T-shirts. It created a 8000 pixels tall mosaic from smaller blocks of images. It aimed to cut through the “scrolling slumber” that’s common with pinners.

The campaign fetched over 55 million impressions and went viral with 64 media outlets covering it within 5 days of its launch. Check the making of the campaign.

5) Vogue Paris

In simple terms their page is a visual treat. There’re boards for weddings, food, music, beauty products, shoes + more. Their most popular board is Le look du jour / Look of the day that feature a myriad of daily celebrity looks to inspire their followers.

6) Sephora Color Wash

The beauty superstore ran a contest where the users had to create a board in the Hair & Beauty category, pin the competition page on their board, and select images from the Sephora website featuring their favourite color. And the most important part – the users had to add the hashtag #Sephoracolorwash to all the images they pinned.

7) Hearst

Elle Decor, Good Housekeeping and Harper’s Bazaar from the house of Hearst Corporation get 5 to 10 percent of their traffic from Pinterest. This number comes from Brian Madden, Hearst’s executive director of audience and partnerships. Their boards feature the most popular content from their magazines.

This particular post from Cosmopolitan’s “20 Life-Changing Ways to Use Bobby Pins” has been pinned more than 374400 times.

5 brands that’re killing it with pictures on Tumblr

1) Coca -Cola

Where happiness lives online – yes that’s the name of the blog. It’s filled with bright, funny, and note-worthy content.

2) American Express

It’s taken the awesomeness of visual content to another level. The page offers inspiration and advice on varied topics.

3) Pixar

Some really drool-worthy content. Just the right place for artists to draw inspiration from.

4) Hyundai’s #BecauseFutbol

Created for the FIFA World Cup last year the content resonates with every football fan across the globe.

5) Denny’s

“I think Denny’s has the best brand Tumblr I’ve ever seen,” said Digg’s social media editor, Veronica de Souza. And we couldn’t agree more.

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