typingFor such a long time it has been drilled into us that images are the way forward in social media marketing. They are eye-catching, attention grabbing and their information is easily absorbed, ideal for the fast paced and fleeting nature of social media.

But according to the latest Market Industry Report released this week by Social Media Examiner (SME), the image is not becoming to hero we would expect. A staggering  81 per cent of the almost 3,000 marketers for companies are intent on increasing their use of written content such as blogs and well written social media posts.

Images Remain Important

The majority of the survey takers didn’t discount visual content altogether; in fact they also stated that it was something they wanted to improve on, but for the time being almost 60 per cent stated that they felt written content was the most important of all the content forms. They felt that original content such as blog posts were the key to engaging with and attracting other business users to their company, with just 19 per cent considering visual content to be the key.

Multi-Channel Approach Gains Momentum

In relation to what should be focused on to promote growth, blogging came above Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook, but only by a fraction. It would seem businesses are now beginning to understand the importance of multi-channel social media growth. 68 per cent planned to increase spend on and use of blogs and written content, with 67 per cent agreeing Twitter and Youtube were both important social media channels to focus on over the next year.

B2B v B2C

Social media’s hold on businesses is showing no signs of letting up, with 92 per cent saying they felt social media marketing was vital to their success, compared with just 86 per cent who said the same when asked last year.

Although business to business (B2B) users are the ones who value written content over visual images and video, there is still a large number of business to consumer (B2C) marketers who value the power of the visual image in their campaigns.

When it comes to channels used by businesses, Facebook won by a mile, unsurprisingly. But when faced with the question of which one channel each business would choose, LinkedIn was the most popular choice for B2B marketers, and Twitter and blogging was seen as the most important to B2C marketers.