In today's fast-paced and ever-changing world, it's more important than ever to create marketing campaigns that are accessible to everyone. Unfortunately, many people with disabilities, such as those with hearing or vision impairments, are often left behind when it comes to marketing materials. But why should we care about accessibility in our marketing campaigns?
The truth is that disability affects an estimated 1.3 billion individuals globally, which is one in every six people. That's a staggering number, and it means that a significant portion of your potential audience may be missing out on your message. By making your marketing campaigns accessible, you not only create a more inclusive and welcoming environment for everyone, but you also open up new opportunities for engagement and growth.
Think about it: if you're not reaching all of your potential customers, you're leaving money on the table. By ensuring that your marketing campaigns are accessible to everyone, you can tap into new markets, build brand loyalty, and drive revenue growth.
ALSO READ : Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) : What Is It?
The Importance of Accessibility
Accessibility is not only essential for creating a more inclusive environment, but it is also a legal requirement. According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), businesses are required to ensure that their goods and services are accessible to people with disabilities. This includes marketing campaigns, as well as websites, social media, and other online content.
In addition to the legal requirements, creating accessible marketing campaigns is simply good business. By making your content accessible, you can reach a wider audience, increase brand awareness, and ultimately drive more revenue. In fact, studies have shown that businesses that prioritize accessibility outperform their competitors in terms of customer loyalty and revenue growth.
How to Make Your Marketing Accessible to Everyone?
So, how can you make your marketing campaigns accessible to everyone? Here are some tips:
Use clear and easy-to-read fonts
Have you ever tried reading something in cursive font, only to find yourself squinting your eyes, frustrated, and eventually giving up altogether? If so, you're not alone! The truth is, cursive fonts may look elegant and fancy, but they can be a real pain to read, especially for people with visual impairments.
Decorative or cursive fonts should generally be avoided in marketing materials because they can be challenging to decipher, especially for people with certain types of vision difficulties, such as dyslexia.
Choosing the right font is essential for creating marketing materials that are accessible to everyone, including those with visual impairments. For people with vision difficulties, choosing the right font can make a significant difference in their ability to read and understand the content.
When selecting a font, it's important to choose one that is easy to read and has a clear distinction between letters and words. Sans-serif fonts, such as Arial or Times New Roman, are often a good choice because they have clean lines and are easy to read.
It's also important to choose a font size that is large enough to be easily readable. A font size of at least 12 points is generally recommended, although some fonts may require a larger size. Additionally, it's important to ensure that there is enough contrast between the font color and the background color to make the text easy to read.
Include alt text for images
Alt text is a text description of an image that can be read by screen readers, which are assistive technologies used by people with visual impairments. When an image does not have alt text, a screen reader may skip over the image altogether, leaving out important information that is conveyed through the visual content.
Including alt text for images in your marketing materials can help ensure that everyone can access and understand the content of your message, regardless of their ability. The alt text should be a concise and accurate description of the image, providing the same information that a sighted person would receive from looking at the image.
In addition to making your marketing materials accessible, including alt text for images can also have SEO benefits. Alt text can help search engines understand the content of your website or social media profile and improve the ranking of your content in search results.
When writing alt text, it's important to be concise and descriptive. Avoid using generic phrases like "image of" or "picture of," and instead, provide a specific description of the content of the image. For example, if the image is a product shot, include the product name and important features in the alt text.
An example of alt text for this image would be ‘A young woman in a floral print white dress and brown heels sitting on a metal stool’
Overall, including alt text for images is an essential aspect of making your marketing materials accessible to everyone. By providing clear and accurate descriptions of the images in your content, you can ensure that everyone can understand and engage with your message, regardless of their visual ability.
ALSO READ: Your Guide To Writing Effective Alt Texts
Provide closed captions for videos
Closed captions are text descriptions of the audio content in a video that are synchronized with the video's timing, like subtitles for movies! This allows people with hearing impairments to read the dialogue and understand the message of the video.
Including closed captions in your marketing videos can help ensure that everyone can access and understand the content of your message, regardless of their hearing ability. It also provides an additional benefit for individuals who may have difficulty understanding accents or speaking styles that are different from their own.
In addition to making your marketing materials accessible, providing closed captions for videos can also have SEO benefits. Search engines can read the captions and use them to understand the content of your video, which can improve the ranking of your content in search results.
When creating closed captions, it's important to ensure that the captions accurately reflect the dialogue in the video. Captions should be synchronized with the video's timing, and any relevant sound effects should be described in the captions. Additionally, it's important to use clear and easy-to-read fonts that are large enough to be easily readable.
Use descriptive links
When creating links, it's important to use descriptive text that accurately describes the content of the link. This helps individuals with visual impairments using screen readers to understand where the link is leading them and what information they can expect to find once they click on the link. Using descriptive links also helps improve the user experience for everyone by providing clear and concise information about the linked content.
Avoid using phrases like "click here" or "read more," which don't provide any context and can be confusing for users who are relying on assistive technologies. Instead, use clear and concise language that accurately describes the content of the linked page or document.
For example, if you are linking to a blog post about accessibility in marketing, you can use descriptive text such as "Learn more about accessibility in marketing" or "Read our blog post on how to make your marketing materials accessible to everyone."
It's also important to ensure that the linked text stands out visually from the surrounding text to make it clear that it is a clickable link. Typically, linked text is underlined or displayed in a different color than the surrounding text.
Ensure website accessibility
A clear and consistent navigation menu is one of the most important factors in making a website accessible to all users. This is because the navigation menu provides a roadmap for users to find the information they are looking for on your website. A well-designed navigation menu should be easy to understand and use, regardless of a user's level of experience or familiarity with your website.
There are several best practices to keep in mind when designing a navigation menu that is accessible to all users. First, ensure that the menu is placed in a consistent location on every page of your website, such as at the top or side of the page. This helps users orient themselves and find the information they need quickly and easily.
Next, ensure that the menu is organized in a logical and easy-to-understand manner. This means grouping similar types of content together, using clear and concise labels for each section, and avoiding overly complex submenus on dropdowns that can be difficult to navigate.
It's also important to ensure that the menu is easy to interact with for users with a variety of input devices. For example, users with mobility impairments may rely on keyboard navigation to navigate your website, while users with visual impairments may rely on screen readers to navigate the menu. The menu should be easily accessed and navigated using a variety of input devices, and that all elements are clearly labeled and easily selectable.
Marketing is all about reaching and engaging with your target audience, and by making your campaigns accessible, you're expanding that audience to include everyone. By prioritizing accessibility in your marketing strategy, you're not only doing the right thing, but you're also tapping into a market that's often overlooked by your competitors.
Remember, accessibility isn't just about compliance with legal requirements; it's about creating a more inclusive and welcoming environment for everyone. By implementing the strategies we've discussed, you're sending a message that you value all of your customers and their diverse needs.
So, let's work together to create a more accessible and inclusive world, one marketing campaign at a time. By doing so, we can ensure that everyone has equal access to information and resources, and we can make a positive impact on the world around us.
SO, WHERE DO YOU FIND THIS PARTNER?
Well, aren’t we glad you asked! We at DigiCom are obsessive data-driven marketers pulling from multi-disciplinary strategies to unlock scale. We buy media across all platforms and placements and provide creative solutions alongside content creation, and conversion rate optimizations. We pride ourselves on your successes and will stop at nothing to help you grow.