Visual Storytelling as a marketing strategy - Ziyad Alarfaj

Inspiration And Insights
3 min readSep 25, 2021
Ziyad Alarfaj - Visual Storyteller

“Visual Storytelling is a marketing strategy that leverages compelling narratives, placing your customer at the heart of the story, staged with an emotional visual media experience and effectively distributed across your buyer’s journey — in order to empower customers’ lives and drive business results.”

Ziyad Alarfaj — Visual Storyteller

We recognize 2 core drivers that support effective visual storytelling:

1. Our human brain processes visuals much faster than text
> “Visuals are processed 60,000 times faster than text by the human brain and 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual” -3M

2. The human brain prefers information packaged as stories
> “92% of consumers want brands to make their ads feel like stories. -OneSpot

Ziyad Alarfaj — Visual Storyteller

Today’s communication noise is marked by 2 opposing forces:

1) Content explosion: a dramatic and continual increase in content production,
> “4.6 billion pieces of content are produced every day” — LinkedIn

and content consumption is further enabled by greater broadband and mobile access.
> 70% of the world mobile data traffic will be video by 2020” — Cisco


2) Fragmented user attention span: Selective attention span that on one hand allows to be banner blind but at the same time binge for four hours on Love is Blind TV series on Netflix.
BTW let’s all forget about that misleading viral stat that claimed human attention span is one second shorter than a goldfish.

And don’t just take my word for it, a 2019 eMarketer report indicated that second-highest challenge CMOs are struggling with after “Driving growth” is “Delivering a powerful brand that breaks through the clutter.”

Ziyad Alarfaj — Visual Storyteller

To add fuel to fire, not only marketers find it hard to connect with audiences because of the growing communication noise, these days we also realize that often the audience is not at all there. Either due to digital fatigue and cutting down on digital consumption: 1 in 5 have been completely disconnected, but 7 in 10 are on a digital diet (GlobalWebIndex). Or due to the growing disinformation, audiences are replaced by bots that produce social content as if they’re real people.

The rules have changed and audiences today demand meaningful stories by real people — stories about their problems not about the products’ speed and feeds in order to meet marketers’ growth targets.

Ziyad Alarfaj — Visual Storyteller
Ziyad Alarfaj — Visual Storyteller