This holiday season, we are challenging you and your brand to get creative with visuals.

By Megan Bauer
The Hoffman Agency, Portland-Vancouver

Just take a second to read through the visual above.

While my family may not be quite this crazy, there is something to be said about  a fun visual (courtesy of Scott Bateman) that adds a new spin to the same old holiday conversation.

Every year we see hundreds of brands posting holiday content… but it’s pretty much all the same. By now, most companies have realized the importance of visuals, but have not yet found their own creative touch to add to the content.

Thinking about the image at the beginning of this post, why is it important to tell a story and not just post visuals?

First of all, let’s be clear, this is a very simple visual that anyone could put together. But it tells an intriguing story that is easy to follow and entertaining to read—most people can probably relate to at least one part of it. Now, I am not saying that every brand should turn to crude family humor this holiday season. What I am saying that companies should be thinking about telling visual stories in new and different ways.

Why Does Visual Content Work?

It’s all about brain chemistry. According to an article in LifeHacker, “When we are being told a story, things change dramatically. Not only are the language processing parts in our brain activated, but any other area in our brain that we would use when experiencing the events of the story are too.”

If I describe a warm turkey being pulled out of the oven, you can probably imagine the smell — that’s your olfactory cortex being activated. It’s easy to understand how powerful descriptive language can be alone – but adding a visual can drive that descriptive language home.  These visuals can come in many forms, from a social media graphic to a blog feature image.

The best part? Creating visuals doesn’t have to be a time consuming thing. Here is one that I threw together using a free tool called Canva. There is a blog post on how to use it here.

This holiday season, we are challenging you and your brand to get creative with visuals.

This may not be the best example, but my point is that as we go through the holiday season, try to be a little more creative about your visual storytelling—it adds a new element to your brand and intrigues consumers on a deeper level. Happy holidays!

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