Why visual communication is more important than ever | Inquirer Business

Why visual communication is more important than ever

/ 05:03 AM April 22, 2019

The old adage states that a picture is worth a thousand words, but today, we know that it’s more likely that videos are the main media accessed by most everyone 40 and below—on Facebook, Twitter and other social media. So how could businesses ensure that their choice of visual communication will reach their target markets? And how could this content stand out, as they scroll through their media feeds?

We asked Rock Cleo, an expert on visual communication and design thinking, why he thinks visual communication is even more important today:

Better retention


Retention of information is ultimately the goal of any content. Here is where the choice of visual is key—impactful images are deposited and stay in the mind for longer. A study conducted showed that only 10-20 percent of participants were able to remember spoken and written information while over 50 percent recall visuals and images. It is important to aim at the retention of information when choosing visuals to market products and services.


Who doesn’t know the apple with a bite? A lighted Apple logo even from afar can be identified by almost everyone. No need for words. Just the logo. For the younger ones, a round green logo with three waves equates to Spotify! The brand uses monochromatic rendering in their artwork. This is a good example of retention. Young people’s minds become associated with the brand whenever they spot that kind of artwork.

Effective content marketing tool

Visual communication helps the audience understand the information. It increases the comprehension of the subject matter. Types of two-dimensional images which aid communication include drawings, pie charts, animation, signs, typography, graphic designs, among many others.

When traveling to other countries, Japan, for instance, you will notice that their signs have cartoon-type illustrations. So as tourists, even if we cannot understand the Japanese characters, we are able to obey their road signs, bus directions and where to put our trash.

Fast processing of images

The majority of people respond quickly to visual images versus texts. Humans can grasp the sense of a visual scene within 1/10 of a second. Videos and images tend to have a more impactful experience compared to text-heavy content. Think of your Facebook feed—as you scroll down, you tend to go slower to check out images, GIFs and graphic videos. The mind processes images faster than words or texts.


A photo of a turtle with a plastic straw stuck to its nose went viral. The image just spoke for itself. People went mad over the use of plastic straws and pushed businessmen to eliminate them and look for substitutes. That strong image had an impact and pushed people to act.

Good visuals are able to convey messages efficiently and have a positive impact on boosting your business. Without visuals, even the best product features may be lost or misunderstood. Coming up with an appropriate image for an advertisement may take time but the end result will make it understandable to all your target markets.

Cleo will facilitate a workshop titled “Effective Visual Communication: Creating Compelling Visual Content” on May 30-31 at the Inquirer Academy.

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In this course, one will enhance skills in layout and composition, applying principles of design thinking. The course will also help art/creative directors or those who manage a team of designers develop a system in creating designs (from conceptualization to presentation) to become more productive and efficient in the workplace.

The Inquirer Academy is at 4168 Don Chino Roces Ave. corner Ponte St., Makati City. For more information about the workshop or if you would like to add your input on the article, you may e-mail [email protected], call (632) 834-1557 or 771-2715 and look for Jerald Miguel or Karl Paz.

TAGS: Business, media

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