Will visual content drive social media in 2013?

As the year draws to a close the inevitable lists of the best and worst moments begin to appear. But what about social media’s biggest successes this year? Econsultancy have published what they think are the 10 greatest social media campaigns from 2012. Looking back at what makes these campaigns so successful can help us as we move into 2013.

The campaigns are all unique in what made them successful; some used humour, others the element of mystery and some just tapped into the fact that watching a giant thumbs up sign being made entirely from chocolate is quite entertaining. Although each campaign alone was different, a common theme running through all of them was great visual content. They all used clever and powerful images to engage with their fans. In a year when images dominated (just look at the rise of Pinterest and Instagram) these brands took this to heart and created campaigns that resonated with consumers and, in cases like Nike, even inspired people. From a great video from Cadbury, that reportedly had fans leaving the content running for hours, to Heineken’s one new balloon for every new like, content got personal and competition to produce the best was fierce.


One campaign they failed to include was that of Barack Obama’s political social media barrage. And yet the now iconic photo with the caption ‘four more years’ is now the most shared photo on Twitter ever. This highlights that great visual content is what fans engage with best and will drive campaigns to success in 2013. We consumed images on a minute by minute basis in 2012- switching on your smartphone or tablet to check Facebook, uploading images to Instagram, reading interactive news stories and just about everything else you can imagine. Visual content is leading the way to success for brands in a sea of bland social media campaigns.


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