Building Trust Through Visual Content
BY Ryan Gray
March 7, 2024

Trust rules. Trust is the reason we buy from certain brands and avoid others. But establishing trust in a crowded marketplace requires more than a strong value proposition or impressive credentials—it demands an emotional connection. 

That’s where visual storytelling comes in. 

A well-designed piece of content can effectively communicate a company’s values and create credibility for a discerning audience. In fact, in our recent survey, we found that four out of the top five content types buyers rely on when making a purchasing decision have a clear visual component.

Whether it’s a blog post, social chip, a video or even your website, every piece of content you produce serves as an opportunity to establish trust and evoke emotions with your audience.

So, while good design can draw people closer, unfortunately, bad design can push them away. Let’s dive into how you can use design to build trust with your audience.

Focus on consistency 

B2B sales cycles can stretch over months or even years, involving multiple stakeholders and significant time and financial investments. 

The good news is you have many touchpoints with your customers. The bad news is you may not know when and where your customer may first encounter your brand. That means, rather than focusing on each touchpoint at a granular level, it’s paramount to focus on being consistent with your design and messaging across your core brand assets (CBAs).

This means delivering a unified brand experience across all channels, ensuring that every piece of content reflects the brand’s values and voice.

When designing an asset for a new touchpoint or user experience, think siblings, not twins. Your CBAs should feel like a family that allows the brand’s messaging and imagery to shine. 

Embrace transparency and authenticity

Design, at its best, is genuine and emotional. Infusing human elements into design work enhances authenticity and emotional connection. For example, you can humanize your brand by creating social videos of your staff speaking candidly about your products while showing off their personalities. 

This also means speaking directly to your customers’ needs. In fact, 59 percent of buyers say they want content that provides solutions to their specific pain points. Brands should create assets that not only address buyer challenges specifically, but are empathetic toward their situation and purchasing journey.

And don’t forget—social proof sells. Leverage user-generated content (UGC) to showcase real experiences and testimonials from satisfied customers. Getting clients on camera and creating simple, unflashy videos is one of the easiest ways to be transparent and authentic with your audience.

Focus on the user experience

Before users delve into your website’s content, they’re already making judgments based on its appearance. This is the crux of the aesthetic-usability effecta philosophy that refers to users’ tendency to perceive attractive products as better, or more usable.

In plain English, if your website stinks, your customers are going to think your product stinks. That means it doesn’t matter how good your service or product actually is because you’re losing customers on first impressions, before you can change their minds. So not only does your design need to be consistent and authentic, it needs to be aesthetically pleasing and create a friction-less experience.

This requires designers to think from their customers’ perspectives and ask themselves how their customers would perceive, use or share their design. This also means that designers should regularly implement customer feedback to avoid any gaps in usability. 

Nurture connections beyond transactions

In an era defined by digital noise, building trust through visual storytelling is essential for B2B brands. By prioritizing design that is consistent, authentic and transparent, you can capture attention and linger in the minds of your customers, nurturing lasting connections beyond transactions. 

While B2B buyers zig and zag their way through the journey to purchase, it’s incumbent upon the brand to be the rock of the relationship; consistency emerges as the foundation we build trust on. Each and every contact is an opportunity to nurture and cultivate trust that offers a pathway to credibility and loyalty for your company. 

Let’s talk about growing your company.

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