Today, more than ever, your message has to be clear in order to resonate at all with anyone and you have to do it consistently on various levels.
Even if you like it or not, everyone is now perceived in a brand like manner due to social media. Just like Coca-Cola everyone curates their best moments and shares them with the world.
This portrayal of a “certain you” is exactly what ad agencies do for and with brands.
This can be seen as a negative but it has also empowered people to take advantage of being able to sell anything on the global market with little to no overhead. But in order to standout in this new global market, consistency has to be at the center of your practice.
The three main parts that I consider to be most important in consistency for a creator are:
Consistency in visual language
This has to do with the visual style, color, theme, mood choice. Just like in a movie each shot and scene of the entire movie has a “look” and “feel” that seamlessly ties the entire piece together.
This tells the brain that it all belongs in the same space and that the previous and present thing you are watching are to be treated as such. Until there is a break. Like when you are watching a TV show and then a commercial appears. They will generally have a different “look and feel”. Your mind automatically knows that it has nothing to do with the show.
Other times ads will try and look like the show you are currently watching to trick you.
When creating content it is in your best interest to be consistent so that people understand what you are trying to say. For instance if you love insects then @insecthaus_adi is the way you would do that.
Ever notice how when scrolling through Instagram you can easily guess some posts are from certain people just by their visual style? This is ultimately what you want to achieve.
Consistency in message
Visual content can carry the main theme in fashion, portraiture, yoga, ballet, and pottery at first glance. From there, text and subject matter can say much more.
Example: Kevin uses yoga & photography to merge his two loves. Yet his text is filled with massively truthful insight into his journey as a human being that challenge and question self and socially imposed social expectations.
Combine the three and you have very unique content that inspires 108k people to follow him & brands to sponsor him. The people that follow and the brands that sponsor him can trust his consistency to inspire the practice of yoga for fun, health, and better overall living. One note on Kevin’s content is that although the visual and the text are delivered through the same medium I am sure some people are more consistently drawn to his words than his imagery and visa versa.
Consistency in frequency
Probably the most important and the one most naturally tied to the word “consistency” is frequency. This is something that is used on so many levels today that although it may be obvious to many our daily lives are so bombarded by it that we sometimes don’t realize it. Take this computer I am typing this post on. It has the logo of an apple with a piece bitten off of it. I take it out anywhere and instantly anyone who sees it registers the brand in their mind. In short a mini advertisement. Putting a logo on every object a big brand makes is a very smart way of infiltrating and reminding anyone who sees it that they exist. This works for all social media content as well. It is a very known fact that if I post a picture a day on Instagram I am sure to get followers. With just that simple act my account will be seen more than if I posted one image a month. Coca-Cola has been making sugar water since 1886 and yet they know that if they don’t remind us that their sugar water is the one that makes you happier than the rest they will sell much less.
Also the higher the frequency at which you practice photography, yoga, cooking, vloging the better you will get at all facets of those crafts. Ultimately helping you to refine in visual language and message.
Now to poke at a couple of my friends content…
I took a screenshot of their most recent work on Instagram and from just that I will identify what they are about only using their latest 12 images/videos and not reading the text.
Subject matter: Portraits & Travel.
Quick Analysis: The portraits stand out a lot more and seem like much more thought is put into them. Makes me think that this is strictly a portrait photographer who likes to travel but it is clear she treats portraits on a whole different level than travel. In the portraits one can see exertions of power, love, and vulnerability which is a must for a portrait artist. Subjects are generally isolated and surrounded by a single color.
Subject Matter: Ballet & Dance in street setting
Quick Analysis: It is clear that there is a ballet theme but the fact that it is strictly out on the street makes me think he wants to release the body or dance from its original rigid structure and scenery. Unlike Tango which is danced on the street, ballet is pretty much solely seen in performance hall of some sort. Massive detail is taken to hand and body placement though as to not insult its classic beauty. Intentional interactions with the surroundings are frequent and do not feel forced at all.
Subject matter: Portraits & Fashion
Quick Analysis: Very large dynamic range. Most subjects are dead center yet proportion, vantage point, mood, age, texture, lighting vary greatly yet they all fit on the grid well. To me it seems like Brian is more cerebral with his images. There is an open narrative that is left for the viewer to ponder upon.
Subject Matter: Yoga
Quick Analysis: Kevin is obviously very into yoga but there is more than average attention to detail in form. The middle image is very specific and clear on what exactly is needed to accomplish a High Lunge as well as things to note when in the pose. Also top two images have very heavy use of symmetry. There is some silliness sprinkled around like the jumper suit and most of the videos were he is with someone there is a playfulness that balances the seriousness of his solo work. There is a clear message to me that his personal practice is very focused but that he enjoys embracing the inner child inside us all.
Subject matter: Pottery and Pen Art
Quick Analysis: Wood, clay, paper, drawings of nature, plants, and bread. It is all very primal, very much calling to my base human interactions with the world. The colors and scenes repeat throughout and strengthen the earth theme making it clear of the connection to the earth and how all of it is one and the same. Her consistency is so strong that in an instant you get a very immediate feeling from her art.
I wanted to analyze each person like this because when someone lands for the first time at a website or Instagram page the viewer wants to be able to identify it as quickly as possible. If you are not doing that consistently in the first 12 images or first three seconds of someone landing at your site then there is a WAY higher probability that you will not be followed or that they will not explore your site further.