How to harness the power of the infographic
As the name suggests, an infographic typically presents data-heavy information in graphical form so it can be understood easily and quickly. The simplicity of an effective infographic is generally inversely proportional to the amount of work that goes into creating it. Regardless, it is worth the investment of time and money as an infographic can help you achieve your marketing and communications objectives, effectively.
Generally (the clue is in the name), infographics present information graphically using charts, diagrams, colours, text commentary and labels. Translating a block of heavy text and statistics into an interesting infographic can make it easy for people to absorb a lot of information, fast.
An infographic is versatile; it can simplify copy, statistics and complicated information in business documents, show the distance between planets in the solar system, or present ten benefits of green tea. Whatever you like, really.
Using clear, attractive design, an infographic has a far better chance of getting its point across than a dense paragraph of text, tables, charts and graphs.
What isn’t an infographic?
Since the term infographic has spread beyond the professional marketing and communications sector, many organisations have started labelling basic figures, charts, tables and illustrations as infographics.
Figures, charts, tables and illustrations, with a few icons and colours do not make an infographic. This is because the source content has not been interpreted in a way that is easy for your audience to follow; it’s just statistics in colour and pretty pictures.
Create infographics with purpose
Before creating your infographic, make sure you understand why you are doing it. Is it to inform, educate, entertain, inspire or something else? The point of using infographics is to make information more digestible. Simplicity is key and keeping your goal uppermost in mind will help keep you focused.
Start by identifying the core message you want to communicate alongside the data that will support it. Consider the types of symbols, numbers and icons to use. Remember that this is all about visual content, so 90% of the info needs to be pictorial.
Pick a colour palette and stick to it – perhaps your organisation’s colours, if that is applicable. Think about the space you have available and don’t make it too busy or you won’t achieve your aim of getting information across easily.
If you are not feeling creative enough to give it a go yourself or graphic design is not one of your skillsets, there are online infographic creation packages that will do the design for you. Canva is an easy-to-use option, and there are plenty more available online.
Integrating infographics with your online presence
When designing data visualisations, keep in mind the platform you are targeting. Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are good for sharing informational charts, whereas Pinterest and Google+ are better for how-to articles or guides.
Social media is notoriously busy, and we are all guilty of scrolling quickly through countless images in the hope of finding something interesting. Giving a unique ‘twist’ to your infographic will stop your reader in their tracks, captivate their attention and encourage them to share it with their other social media contacts. Before you know it, you could go viral!
Just like creating good copy that communicates your message quickly and easily, creating an infographic can be challenging. Contact us to find out how we can help you communicate your organisation’s complex data to your target audience in a way that achieves your marketing and communication goals.