Marketers looking for an interesting new addition to content marketing can use engaging visuals to keep audiences' attention.

Marketers monitoring the biggest trends in media consumption to update their strategies should consider that branded graphics might be the next big thing in content marketing. According to a 2012 study by ROI Research, 44 percent of consumers are likely to engage with brands that post pictures to their social accounts, compared to 40 percent for regular status updates and 37 percent for video.

Consumers are conscious of image quality, and this plays a big role in content sharing. According to an informal study conducted by MarketingSherpa, high-quality, professional-grade images generated an average of 90.64 shares per post over a 30-day period, while semi-professional, lower-grade graphics received only 40.91 shares per post over the same time period. Brands that spend more time creating informational and promotional graphics have the potential to see their efforts pay off.

The high response rates generated by quality pictures posted to social platforms complements a new report conducted by Simply Measured, which found Instagram and Pinterest saw the highest levels of marketing adoption over the past two months. In August 2012, the source discovered that 40 percent of leading brands used Instagram for marketing, but as of November 1, 2012, Instagram has a 54 percent adoption rate. Pinterest’s marketing growth is even more widespread, as the digital pinboard has a 63 percent adoption rate – up 24 percent from August 2012.

Consumers have embraced image-based content, which creates new opportunities for content marketing strategies. Branded content like infographics have measurably increased engagement when posted to social sites. While Pinterest and Instagram have had the highest adoption rates over the past few months, Facebook and Twitter sit at near 100 percent saturation, and together, these platforms enhance infographic marketing and lead to greater brand visibility.

Joe Meloni is Brafton's former Executive News and Content Writer. He studied journalism at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and has written for a number of print and web-based publications.