14 Visual Content Marketing Statistics to Know for 2020 [Infographic]

By Nadya Khoja, Mar 11, 2020

visual content marketing statistics

Over the last five years, there has been a significant increase in remote work and virtual events. More and more companies are conducting business virtually and because of this, the need for more efficient and engaging communication is also increasing.

Visual content is an incredibly effective way to communicate via virtual channels and its use will only increase in importance in 2020.

Every year, Venngage releases this study on visual content marketing statistics in an effort to understand how the visual communication landscape is continuing to shift.

We reached out to thousands of marketers (with the help of our friends at Typeform) to ask them about how visual content played a part in their marketing and growth strategies in the past year, and how they foresee visual content impacting their work in 2020 and the years to come.

    Feel free to jump ahead and view the reports from:

  • 2018
  • 2017

Nearly 200 content marketers shared their insights with us this year, and we decided to feature some of their predictions for the upcoming year as well.

Here’s the infographic that summarizes the results from the survey, followed by some thoughts from the best and brightest in content marketing:

visual content marketing statistics

Not a designer? No problem. Create an engaging infographic with Venngage’s Infographic Maker and easy-to-edit templates.


Visual Content Marketing Statistics to Know for 2020

If you want your marketing message to stick, you need to present it to people in a memorable way. Show people that message. Don’t just say it.

The following are the main takeaways from experienced content marketers all over the world about how they have used, and plan to continue using, visuals as a tool in advertising and marketing.

1. How did the use of visual content in marketing change for you from 2018 to 2019?

Content marketers were asked to compare approximately how their use of visuals in marketing changed between 2018 and 2019.

In 2019, 74% of the marketers we surveyed stated that more than 70% of their content contained some form of visual. This was a 10.5% increase in visual content use from what these same marketers claimed was the case in 2018.

In other words, the use of different visual formats has seen a significant increase over the past year.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 1


2. What type of visuals were used most frequently in 2019?

We were also curious to understand how content marketers defined visual content. More specifically, we wanted to learn what types of visuals were used most frequently in 2019.

The results were quite similar to previous years, with 40% of marketers claiming to use stock photos most frequently. After stock photos, 34% of marketers claimed to use original graphics such as infographics and illustrations, followed by 14% claiming to use videos and presentations (including formats like webinars and slideshows).

The use of video and presentations saw the most significant increase compared to previous years where only 7% of respondents were making use of these two visual formats. Virtual training and communication will likely continue to increase as a means of engaging internal teams as well as external audiences.

Reliance on video and presentations is sure to skyrocket in 2020 as virtual events become a necessity in the workplace.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 2

Charts and data visualization were the most frequently used by 8% of marketers. Multi-page documentation such as white papers and ebooks were used the least frequently.

Less than 1% claimed to use GIFs as their primary form of visual content, a major drop from previous years where more than 3% of marketers claimed to make use of GIFs and memes most frequently.

3. Which type of content in 2019 performed best for you and your marketing goals?

Despite using stock photos most frequently, when asked which type of content actually performed best, the data shifts a little bit. The winner when it came to actual results was original graphics such as infographics and illustrations at 40%. This was followed by videos and presentations at 24%.

Only 13% of marketers claimed that stock photos resulted in the best outcome, followed by 9% claiming charts and data visualizations were the most impactful.

Multi-page docs proved to be the best performers for 7% of marketers, and GIFs and memes came in last at 3%.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 3

4. How much time was spent on average producing visual content in 2019?

When it came to how much time was spent on visuals, 50% stated that they spent less than 5 hours a week creating visuals. This is interesting since in past years more than 70% of respondents claimed to spend less than 5 hours on visual creation.

All this means is that more people are now dedicating much more time to the creation of visual content, likely in an effort to produce higher-quality content on a more consistent basis.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 4

5. What methods or tools were typically used to create visual content?

In previous years, in-house designers and freelance designers were most frequently used for creating visual content.

However the results from this year’s survey show that beginner software like Venngage and more professional software like Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator are the go-to methods for creating visual content for marketers at 55%.

Meaning that the majority of marketers now use self-service tools for creating visual content as opposed to hiring outside design support.

Freelance and contract designers were only used by 15% of marketers, and in-house designers were the go-to solution for 29% of marketers.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 5

6. What were the biggest struggles when it came to producing engaging visuals?

When asked what the biggest struggles were with producing engaging visuals, 43% claimed it was producing that content consistently.

22% stated that both great design and sourcing relevant data were the biggest struggles, followed by 12% stating that structuring content and data for a good visual was the biggest challenge.

Pro tip: For those struggling to source data, running surveys is a great way to gather interesting insights and creating original research. In fact, we used Typeform to create the survey form for this study.

Compared to previous years, there is a 23% increase in the number of marketers finding it more difficult to produce visuals consistently.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 6

7. What percentage of marketers’ budgets was spent producing visuals in 2019?

Of the marketers surveyed this year, 31% claimed that less than 10% of their budget was spent on visual content creation. Close to 15% claimed to spend more than 40% of their budgets on visual content creation.

Based on previous years, it seems that more people are investing more money in visual content production and seeing the value of visuals.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 7

8. How will that change in 2020?

When we asked how much of their budgets they predicted would be investing in visual content in 2020, 25% anticipated spending between 10 and 20% of their total budgets on visual content creation.

In comparison, 31% foresee spending more than 40% of their budgets on visual content production.

Needless to say, more and more marketers are seeing the value of visual marketing.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 8

9. On a scale of 1 to 10, how difficult is it to produce visual content consistently for your brand?

The average rating for all respondents was 5.9 when expressing how difficult it was to produce visual content consistently. The majority of those surveyed rated between 6 and 8, making up 51% of the results.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 9

10. What part of the visual content creation process would you want simplified or automated?

Not surprisingly, the majority of those surveyed stated that the ability to auto-generate multiple design types based on the content input was most desired. The particular preference was selected by 37% of marketers surveyed.

Following this, sitting at 22%, was the ability to resize and reformat visuals for various social media platforms automatically.

Next, 15% wanted to apply branding to their visuals automatically.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 10

Want to automate your visual content creation? Try Venngage for Business and access features like automatic resizing, auto-branding, and smart design generations.

11. How essential is visual content to your marketing strategy?

When asked how essential the use of visuals was for their marketing strategies, 68% stated that visual content was either essential or very important to their marketing strategies.

No one claimed that visual content wasn’t at all important, and the remainder said that it was either quite important or somewhat important.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 11

12. Which platforms do you create visual content for primarily?

When asked where marketers used visual content most frequently, we asked marketers to select all options that applied. 62% of them mentioned using visuals as part of blog content or for landing pages on a website.

Social media was a major use case for visual content with 49% using visuals for Facebook, 47% using them for Instagram, 42% using them for LinkedIn and 33% using them for Twitter.

Lastly, 43% stated using visuals for print and branding materials. The remainder selected other as an option.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 12

13. How frequently do you publish content that contains visuals in a given week?

We also asked marketers how frequently they published the above mentioned content that contained visuals in a given week. 39% said it was anywhere between two and five times a week, 36% said less than twice a week and the remainder published content containing visuals more than five times in a given week.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 13

14. In 2020 and 2021, what percentage of businesses do you think will rely heavily on visual content as part of their marketing strategies?

Finally, we asked respondents to share their thoughts about what percentage of companies will rely heavily on the use of visual content in 2020 and 2021. 41% think that more than 70% of businesses will rely heavily on visuals as part of a marketing strategy.

Only 1% thought that less than 10% of business would be relying on visuals.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 14

15. In the last decade, what were some of the biggest wins for content marketing in general?

This year we also decided to ask some of the marketers we surveyed to share their insights about the biggest wins for content marketing and design over the last decade. Here’s what some of them had to say:

Taylor Patterson
Social Media Content Specialist

Showcasing subject matter experts on video which generated a conversation around topics pertaining to target industries and product knowledge.

Margot Mazur
Sr. Marketing Manager


Matt Janaway

Finally, businesses have begun to see the power of content marketing as a way to generate new customers!

Shane Barker

The biggest win would be the move from text-heavy long-form content to shorter, more visual content. People now have shorter attention spans and you want content that can immediately grab audiences’ attention and keep them engaged. Visual content does that very well.
Adding to the above point, I think the rise of ephemeral content is also exciting. Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp, and a lot of social media platforms now have the “Stories” format. The fact that this content disappears after a set amount of time is what makes it more engaging.

Nathan Chan

The power of video content.

Derric Haynie

Objectively, it has to be the Google algorithm updates that penalized black hat strategies and forced all marketers to focus on user experience and unique value.

Amanda Levine
Content Marketing Manager

Content marketing wasn’t even a thing a decade ago. The fact that brands now realize how important education is to nurture customers along their entire journey is a huge win.

Aditya Sheth
Content Marketer

Focus on quality over quantity and more dense content over shallow filler content.

Ben Sailer
Inbound Marketing Director

In the last decade, content marketing has developed broader awareness as a necessary business function for companies that want to compete on the leading edge. Now that it has become nearly synonymous with marketing itself though, the next decade must be focused on continued innovation in order to better meet customer needs and market demands.

Andy Crestodina
Orbit Media Studios

Original research, social media video, influencer marketing and collaborative content.

William Harris
Advertising Strategist

I love that brands seem to be finally sensing the shift away from just “a blog” – that they realize the value in images and videos produced for the specific channel, not just “repurposed”.

Vince Nero
Director of Content Marketing
Siege Media

Google algorithm changes that penalize garbage sites that have no trust signals.

Aaron Orendorff
VP of Marketing

Given the proliferation of content, the biggest wins belonged to the smallest segment: those who took serving, educating, and challenging their audiences. For them, the wins were enormous — across both B2B and B2C: owned organic traffic, consistent and qualified leads, as well as fiercely loyal customers turned evangelists.

Jennifer Cardenas
Director of Operations

Unique, relatable visuals (getting away from stock images).

Stacey Papp
Internal Communications Manager

We acclimated our entire employee base to actually wanting to see infographics and visuals versus long-form articles. That was a huge departure from previous thinking…most people thought that the only form of content that existed was long-form because that’s all they were used to. We incorporated visuals on a regular basis and the feedback we have been given on those posts is truly remarkable. People are more engaged, they are in awe of the design and we have actually brought a lot of design work we would typically outsource in-house for production.

Cara Hogan
Content Strategist

Video! More marketers are investing in high quality video content.

Nina Mikryukova
PPC / SEM Campaign manager

Inventing some crucial rules for visual performance (including UX) of blog content to make it more attractive and pleasant to read through for a wider audience than a professional one.

– – – –

Over the last decade, content marketing started to consider how audiences experienced and wished to consume content. That’s why we saw a clear shift towards visual content that was attractive, engaging, scannable, easier to retain and still highly informative. Visual blog content and educational video content became a growing trend.

There was also a trend towards educating audiences in order to drive sales and conversions. Content marketing aimed to provide audiences with all the information they needed to make informed, responsible decisions when it came to making a purchase. This developed brand authority and trust through reliable, in-depth content.

Finally, some marketers felt Google’s improved ability to reward relevant, quality content was a significant win for content marketing in general.

16. What do you think some of the biggest wins for design and visual content were specifically in the last decade? 

Josh Steimle
Influencer Inc

Better, more affordable stock photography. Stock photography gets a bad rap, but I was buying stock photography 20 years ago and it cost 20x as much, and was 1/20 as good. If you think the current stuff is cheesy, you should have seen what it used to look like.

Julia McCoy
Express Writers

Creativity, hands-down. I’ve seen some incredibly creative campaigns, and visually, you can get across quite a message with amazing digital artwork. As they say, “A picture is worth a thousand words.

Brad Smith

Online platforms for design (simple, DIY for non-designers).

Shane Barker

Podcasts and webinars have become more popular and are getting much higher engagement rates than most other types of content. Videos were a clear winner when it comes to the most popular content type. The rise in popularity of video content, any type of videos, was the biggest win for visual content.

Josh Gallant
Senior SEO Strategist

Designing and creating visuals become *a lot* more accessible (more tools than just Adobe) and people seemed to gravitate toward anything that wasn’t just words.

Joel Klettke
Business Casual Copywriting

Accessibility of affordable tools and talent, growth of productized services.

Patrick Whatman
Head of Content

GIFs and other simple video snippets that are definitely eye-catching.

Benyamin Elias
Content Marketing Lead

Democratization of design. It’s easier than ever for non-designers to create design assets.

Stephen Jeske
Senior Content Strategist

Visual design software has improved tremendously enabling non-designers to create decent looking visual elements.

Ashley Mason
Senior Consultant, Project Manager and Team Lead
Clemson University

Interactive visual content, content based on your search history or preferences, the ability to filter the type of content you want to see, the ability to track the reach of your content, the ability to go “viral.”

Matteo Gasparello

The advent of interactive content has combined the two major powerhouses that fuel content marketing today: visual content and content that is tailored to the audience. These different types of interactive content provide a personalized experience to each user that makes lead generation and customer acquisition a cakewalk!

Etee Dubey
Content and Outreach Specialist

Visual content is not just “beautiful” anymore. It’s not a commodity but it’s essential to deliver a great content experience.

Elena Perri
Communications Manager
BrynMawr Presbyterian Church

The various tools to design content have expanded, and they are more user friendly.

– – – – –

The majority of responses we received from company founders and marketers centered on this: The access to simple, online design tools has been a visual-content game changer for content marketing.

Over the past decade, creating high-quality designs for a blog post, eye-catching social media designs, a stunning infographic, and other types of content have become easier than ever! A hefty design budget, an experienced design team and costly design software were no longer needed for content marketing.

Instead, entrepreneurs without a budget, nonprofits, early-stage startups, and small businesses were all able to create engaging visual content that spoke to their audiences. They were also able to compete with the established brands and corporations that typically had unlimited budgets and huge teams.

Beyond visual content, our respondents also felt that content-creation platforms in general have become more accessible. Recording podcasts, launching a web series, finding quality content creators or hosting webinars have all become easier and easier to do.


We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: visual communication is not going anywhere anytime soon. If you aren’t already creating visuals as part of your marketing strategy, it’s not too late to start adding it to your content calendar.

Have some other insights to share about your visual content success? Leave us a comment and tell us about it!

Sign up for Venngage and start visualizing your ideas, without a designer:


Visual Content Marketing Statistics to Know for 2019

Two years ago I asked 300 different online marketers to help me figure out how they were using visual content as part of their marketing strategies in 2016 and their predictions for 2017.

You can jump ahead in this article to look at the results from that survey by clicking here.

This year I wanted to see if there were any changes in how marketers were creating visuals, and what kind of content engagement they were seeing.

I also asked a couple of additional questions to see how the use of various visual formats impacted their blogging strategies.

Here’s the infographic with the results of the survey:

Visual Content Marketing Statistics 2019 Infographic



Visual Content Marketing Statistics to Know for 2019

Here are the stats you need to know if you want your content marketing strategy to be ahead of the curve in 2019.

1. How did the use of visual content in marketing change from 2017 to 2018?

When asked, 44.6% of marketers stated that between 91-100% of content their published in 2017 contained some type of visual. This is about a 10% increase from what was stated in the year 2016, when we first put together this survey.

However, in 2018 the percentage of people who visuals in their content 91-100% of the time rose to 56.3%. That’s almost a 40% increase since the year 2016.

On top of that, 87.5% of marketers state that they were using visuals in more than 50% of the articles they published.

Needless to say, the frequency at which marketers are taking advantage of visual content is trending up.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Question 1



2. What type of visual content was used more frequently in 2018?

We also asked marketers again what types of visuals they created most frequently in 2018. They were surveyed on the following types of visuals:

  • Memes and Gifs: Defined as humorous visuals with some means of pop-culture reference.
  • Charts and Data Visualizations: Specifically the visualization of raw data only, or complex data sets.
  • Videos and Presentations: Either webinars, animated videos or recorded videos embedded within their content.
  • Infographics: A combination of data and graphic design elements, including visual formats like posters, flyers or banners.
  • Stock Photos: High-resolution photographs from directories not limited to Unsplash and Shutterstock

In 2018, 40.2% of marketers stated that they used stock photos the most in their content. This was followed by 36.6% of marketers who said they preferred using original graphics, such as infographics more frequently in their content marketing.


Other visual formats like charts and data visualizations were used frequently by 12.5% marketers, videos and presentations used most frequently by 7.1% of marketers, and gifs and memes were used most frequently by only 3.6% of marketers.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Question 2

Enhance your visuals and choose from thousands of high-quality stock photos in Venngage’s Image library.


3. What types of visual content engaged audiences best in 2018?

Of course, what matters most is how visual content is performing. Despite using stock photos the majority of the time, 40.2% of marketers who were surveyed said that the visuals which performed best were actually original graphics such as infographics and illustrations.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Question 3


This was followed by 23.2% who said that videos and presentations performed best, 19.6% who admitted that charts and data visualizations lead to higher engagement and with only 12.5% of marketers stating that stock photos engaged audiences best. Memes and Gifs seemed to have the lowest engagement with 4.5% of marketers stating they saw an impact here.

Curious as to what extent the use of visual content actually impacted content engagement, we decided to take a look at some our top performing articles in terms of engagement (looking at metrics like the average time on page and bounce rates of certain articles) and compare them to articles that had lower engagement.

We found that on average, articles which contained a higher ratio of visuals performed substantially better. Of course we can’t say for sure until we test out this hypothesis a bit more, but we can assume that the more frequent use of visuals and not just the format, also has an impact on engagement. Understanding these content statistics can also help you build brand awareness, by creating unique visual content.


4. How much time did marketers spend on average creating visual content in 2018?

When asked how long they spent on average, producing visual content, 71.4% of marketers stated that they typically spent anywhere less than 5 hours making visuals. This is almost identical to the data we collected during our 2016 survey, where 71.1% of marketers stated they spent less than 5 hours creating visual content.

However, 9% of marketers claimed to spend over 15 hours a week producing visual content compared to 11.4% in the 2016 survey. Overall, it seems like marketers are making better use of their time when it comes to visual content creation as a whole.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Question 4


5. How did marketers create their visual content in 2018?

We also asked how marketers went about producing their visual content in 2018. In 2016, 32% claimed to use an online tool like Venngage. That number has increased substantially and this year, 49.1% have admitted to using an online graphic software.

This is almost a 60% increase in the past few years. That means that far fewer marketers are relying on freelancers and in-house graphic designers for their visual needs.

In fact, only 9.8% of marketers stated that they used a freelance or contract designer for their marketing visuals, which is roughly a 150% drop from 2016 when 24.1% of marketers mentioned using contracted designers.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Question 5


6. What was the biggest struggle when it came to producing engaging visual content?

When asked what their biggest struggles were when it came to producing engaging visuals, 34.8% of marketers said it was being able to produce it consistently. This is a small drop from 2016 when 36.7% of marketers were struggling with consistent production of engaging visual content.

Following this, 31.3% said they struggled with creating great designs, 19.6% struggled with sourcing good data or content for their designs, and 14.3% said they struggled with getting a wide enough reach with their visuals.

Comparatively, it seems that marketers are definitely getting a much more impactful reach from their visuals since in the 2016 survey, 24.1% said they struggled with reaching a wider audience. But it also seems that more marketers are now struggling to figure out which content or data to include in their visuals, as only 10.1% were facing difficulty with this in 2016.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Question 11


7. What percentage of their marketing budget was spent on producing visual content?

In 2018, 42% of marketers said they spent less than 10% of their marketing budgets on producing visual content compared to 31.6% from the year 2016. What’s interesting here is that marketers also stated a higher frequency in their visual content output.

What this suggests is that marketers are continuing to find cheaper alternatives to producing quality branded visual content.

You can now apply your branding directly to your Venngage designs in one click!

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Screenshot 1


More interesting is that 16.9% of marketers claimed to spend more than 30% of their marketing budgets on visual content creation, a drop of almost 50% from 2016, when 25% of marketers stated spending over 30% of their budgets on visual content.


8. How much do marketers project to spend on producing visual content in 2019?

We also asked how much marketers projected to spend on creating visuals in 2019. 32.1% projected to spend more than 30% of their budgets. This was a similar prediction to the previous survey we did in 2016, but it appears that it did not hold true, since the amount being spent seems to be on a decline.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Question 6

That being said, 29.5% of marketers predict to spend less than 10% of their budgets on visual content creation.

It makes sense that more marketers are spending less money on visual creation considering the adoption of online graphics tools has greatly increased, and the overall cost for a tool compared to a freelance or in-house designer is substantially lower.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Question 7


9. How difficult is it for marketers to consistently product visuals for their brands?

We also asked marketers to indicate on a scale of 1 to 10 how difficult it was to consistently produce branded visuals and 47.4% of marketers voted 7 or higher. 32.1% said somewhere between 4 and 6, and 20.6% gave a rating of 3 or less.

Needless to say, on of the biggest struggles for marketers in 2018 was to consistently produce branded visuals that looked good. At Venngage, we took this feedback to heart. The feature My Brand Kit enables you to apply your brand colors and logos directly to any design you create with Venngage.

create branded infographics

Rather than having to manually produce unique branded content for every campaign, you can generate custom designs in one click.


10. What part of creating visual content do marketers wish could be automated?

We also wanted to ask marketers what part of the visual creation process they wish could be automated, and 42.2% hoped that they could generated multiple unique designs based on the content or data they input.

Following that, 28.7% wished they could automatically resize the visuals they created for various social media platforms, and 16.1% wished they could automatically apply their branding to their visuals.

In an effort to make this dream a reality for our audience, we began working on an advanced design automation platform that not only generates multiple unique designs based on your data, but also automatically resizes those visuals for various platforms AND applies your branding directly to the visuals you create.

If you’d like to get early access when this tool is launched, sign up here:


As we move into the next couple of years, it’s clear that there is more of a demand from marketers for the ability to automate their visual content design.


11. How essential was visual content to B2B and B2C marketing strategies in 2018?

When asked how important visual content was to their content marketing strategy, 68.7% of marketers said visual content was either very important or absolutely necessary. Others, that being 21.4% said it was quite important to their marketing strategies, 9.8% said visuals were somewhat important and not surprisingly, nobody said that visual content was not at all important or relevant for their marketing in 2018.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Question 8


12. What percentage of marketers rely on blogging as part of their strategy?

Since visual content has multi-channel benefits, we wanted to learn more about how people were creating visuals as a way to enhance their blogging efforts. Of the marketers we surveyed, 87.5% said they blogged frequently and that it was in fact an important part of their marketing strategies. The other 12.5% said that they didn’t blog as part of their marketing strategy.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Question 9


13. What percentage of those blog posts contained some type of visual content?

Of those who said they did blog as part of their marketing efforts, 85.7% said that more than 80% of their blog posts contained some type of visual. 9.2% said that between 50% and 80% of their blog posts contained at least one visual, and the remaining 8.1% said that less than 50% of their blog posts contained visuals.

As mentioned earlier, we’ve seen better performance from articles we’ve produced that contain a higher visual to text ratio. These articles tend to rank higher on SERPs and also lead to better direct conversion rates.

Visual Content Marketing Statistics Question 10


14. What percentage of businesses will rely heavily on visual content for marketing in 2019 and 2020, according to marketers?

Lastly, we asked marketers to tell us what percentage of business they thought would rely heavily on visual content in 2019 and 2020, and 45.5% predict that more than 80% of businesses would rely heavily on visuals as part of their content marketing efforts.

Following that was 42% of marketers who foresee between 50% and 80% of businesses relying strongly on visual content. And the remaining 12.5% believe that less than 50% of businesses would heavily rely on visual content.

It appears that for the most part many marketers consider visual content to be an integral part of the growth initiatives, and believe that more and more businesses will adopt visual communication in the coming years.



The data says it all–visual content isn’t going anywhere any time soon. Not only are more brands leveraging the use for of visuals for various social media platforms, but there is a lot of added benefit when it comes to SEO and organic rankings as well, particularly in Google’s image search results.

And of course, creating engaging visual content is a surefire way to resonate with your audience and communicate your ideas more effectively.

10 Visual Content Marketing Statistics to Know for 2017


Visual Content Marketing Statistics 2017


1. What percentage of content published contained visuals?

When asked, 77% of marketers stated that 71% to 100% of the content they published in 2015 contained visuals. Of that 77%, 40.5% of marketers stated that 91% to 100% of the content they published in 2015 contained visuals.

But when asked about their use of visuals in their content strategy during the year 2016, 83.5% of marketers stated that 71% to 100% of their content contained visuals, and 53% of marketers said that 91% to 100% of their content contained visuals.

In 2016, less than 10% of marketers surveyed used visuals under 50% of the time.

From 2015 to 2016, the use of visual content in articles published by marketers increased by an incredible 130%.


2. What kind of visuals were most frequently produced?

When asked what types of visuals were most frequently produced during the year 2016, 35% of marketers stated that they used stock photos the most, while 30.4% of marketers stated that they used original graphics, such as infographics and illustrations, most frequently.

The other forms of visual content that were most frequently produced were videos and Presentations (such as SlideShare presentations), which were used 15.2% of the time, charts and data visualizations, which were used 14% of the time, and GIFs and memes, which were used only 5.4% of the time.


3. Which visuals performed best?

Marketers were also asked to share which kinds of visuals performed best in 2016. Shockingly, just 7.6% of marketers stated that stock photos had the most impact, despite being the most frequently used type of visual. Meanwhile, 41.5% of marketers said that original graphics, such as infographics and illustrations, performed best.

Other high performing kinds of visuals were charts and data visualizations, which 25.7% of marketers claimed lead to the highest engagement. In addition, 20.2% also mentioned that videos and presentations performed best, and only 5% of marketers said that GIFs and memes performed best.


4. How much time was spent a week on making visuals?

When asked to share how much time was spent a week producing visual content, 71.1% of marketers claimed that they spent less than five hours a week making visuals.

Contrary to that, 11.4% of marketers claimed that they worked more than 15 hours a week on producing engaging visuals for their content strategy, and 17.5% stated that they worked between five and 15 hours a week on visuals.

A tool like Venngage takes the heavy lifting out of infographic creation by offering professionally designed templates that could save marketers hours.


5. What methods were used for creating visuals?

When asked how marketers created their visual content, 32%–the vast majority–claimed to use an online graphic design tool like Venngage. Following that number, 30.4% said they used an in-house designer.

Marketers who used a freelance designer made up 24.1%, and 14.5% stated that they used other means for creating and curating visuals such as Instagram, Flickr and Photoshop.


6. What was the biggest struggle when creating engaging visuals?

Next, marketers were asked to share their biggest struggle when it came to creating engaging visuals in 2016. The leading statistic was that 36.7% of marketers struggled with being able to produce visuals on a consistent basis. In second place, 29.1% of marketers struggled with producing well-designed visuals, and 24.1% said they struggled to reach a wider audience with their visuals.

Only 10.1% of marketers said their struggled to source reliable and interesting data.


7. How integral is visual content to marketing strategies in 2017?

Marketers were asked to express how integral the use of visual content would be to their marketing strategies in 2017.

Most marketers, 60.8%, stated that the use of visual content was absolutely necessary to their marketing strategy. Following that, 31.7% said that visual content was very important for their marketing strategies in 2017, while 5% said it was just important, and 1.3% claimed that visual content was only somewhat important. Only 1.3% claimed that visual content was not important at all to their marketing strategy.


8. What percentage of marketing budgets were spent on visual content in 2016?

When asked what percentage of their budget was used on visual content in 2016, 31.6% of marketers surveyed said that 0% to 10% of their budget was spent on visual content, and 25.3% of marketers said that 11% to 20% of their budget was spent on visual content.

Only 1.3% of marketers claimed that they spent 91% to 100% of their budget on producing visuals for their marketing strategy.


9. How much do marketers project to spend on visual content in 2017?

Finally, when asked what they projected to spend on visual content in 2017, 21.5% of marketers stated they planned to spend  0% to 10% of their budget. Another 21.5% planned to spend 11-20% of their budget on visual content, yet another 21.5% of marketers surveyed predicted spending 21-30% of their budget on visual content.

The remaining 35.5% of marketers predicted they would spend over 31% of their marketing budgets on visual content.  


Final thoughts:

Based on the results of this survey, it’s obvious that the majority of marketers understand the incredible value of using visuals in their 2017 marketing strategies In particular, they understand the value of using infographics, charts and data visualizations.

The truth is that when there is so much text-based content produced on a daily basis, and even on an hourly basis, you need to test out other forms of content (in conjunction with a solid SEO strategy and reliable SEO checker) to captivate your audience.

Make 2017 the year that people remember your brand and get a head start on creating awesome visuals that people will love.

The 7 Biggest Graphic Design Trends That Will Dominate 2021 [Infographic]



About Nadya Khoja

Nadya heads marketing at Venngage and has been featured in Entrepreneur, The Huffington Post, The Next Web, Forbes, Marketing Profs, Social Media Examiner and more. She also has a web-series called Drunk Entrepreneurs where she interviews different entrepreneurs who are finding success.