How to Create Good Cross-Platform Visual Content

Staying relevant on the social web is no easy task, but attention to how images and videos play in multiple spaces will help ensure your marketing reaches the right audience. Cross-platform planning not only ensures you have content that displays at the proper resolution. It also solidifies your position as a forward-thinking brand that understands the intricacies of social media messaging and uses it to inform and entertain prospective customers. In this post, we’ll explore a handful of ways you can add to your content marketing arsenal to create awesome social content the first time out, publish it across multiple channels and successfully meet the goals you’ve set for your brand.

Understand each platform

Among the most fundamental aspects of cross-platform success is content design that plays well in a variety of spaces. That includes sizing images properly on social media, remembering the differences between desktop and mobile applications, and relying on expert feedback, both that of your audience and that of trusted partners (you guessed it!). When it comes to social media programming, also consider ways to maximize your investment by capitalizing on visuals first. For example, a blend of Instagram and Twitter such as that used by HotelQuickly, a mobile booking app serving the Asia Pacific market, places emphasis on high-quality photos that can quickly be shared. The brand capitalizes on the Twitter platform by adding in periodic A/B questions that encourage follower interaction. Incidentally, the same publication rules apply to ads you might deploy in multiple online spaces: Be consistent with messaging, but experiment to identify the best delivery channels, says Michelle Manafy at TheDrum.com, a marketing news website.

Articulate first, hone in second

Another good idea is to spell out key themes for readers before fragmenting your message across the web. One of the best places to do this is the tried and true brand blog, slideshow or infographic, notes Rallyverse, a content creation and distribution platform. “Don’t overthink it: clearly stated ideas with great examples and images are your goal,” Rallyverse writes in a SlideShare presentation. ” A great recent read about dueling cross-platform strategies can be found in this ReelSEO.com analysis of Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts video channels on YouTube and Vine. Both have strong followings, but neither is capitalizing equally on those channels nor posting with the frequency needed to win over viewers, author Andy Smith concludes.

Schedule content precisely and frequently

That gets us to our next point: the Dale Carnegie principle. To win friends and influence people, regular cross-channel publication of content is crucial. Craft a brand style guide specifically aimed at equalizing your voice across channels. With that in place, organize workflow to support consistency across channels. Publish the same content multiple times per day to ensure it gets seen and to replicate quality, well-written work that speaks to your core values, recommends JoinUniverse.com, based on its analysis of content marketing platform Buffer. Revisit the stable of incredible and oftentimes free curation tools that can help you hunt for content best suited to your brand.

Guide decisions with good data

With all of these feel-good write-ups and visualizations soaring over the virtual transom, it’s easy to lose track of the hard numbers behind your efforts. Don’t let that happen. Instead, use data to further develop cross-platform distribution practices, advises TweetReach.com. For example: “If the best practice for a particular social channel tells you that photos without faces in them perform the best, but your audience engages more with photos that do have faces, then continue to include faces in your content.” Also take time to understand behavioral patterns, such as how your audience researches a product or service and then takes action, adds Lee Odden at TopRankBlog.com.

Keep on learning (and executing)

Above all, add to your brand’s store of wisdom each day by spending time on research, advocates Adriana Palma, digital marketing specialist at Sony Music Central America & Caribbean, in an interview with ScibbleLive.com. “There are always new technologies, new apps, new tools, new trends, new strategies to look for and to explore,” Palma explains. “The need of having all the information updated will keep you on top every day.” It’s true you might feel like an exhausted multi-tasker at times, but with the proper care, cross-platform visual content will captivate your audience for a long time to come. Nate Birt is a multimedia journalist, social media enthusiast and copy editor with experience at a variety of print and digital publications, and a Certified Journalist at the Visually Marketplace. Follow him on Twitter at @natebirt.

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