An infographic is a digital image that presents data or information to the viewer. Often, infographics take the form of easy-to-read charts or diagrams.
Picture this: you’re packing up your childhood belongings and come across an old textbook. You flip open the book at random and look down at the page. What do you see?
Although the page is filled with words and/or numbers, odds are high that your eyes have landed on an image.
Why do you think that is?
Science says it’s because our brains are about 60,000 times faster at processing images than at deciphering written text. So when we’re trying to understand a piece of content, our eyes reflexively go to where we can get the most information in the least amount of time. As you can imagine, this principle is hugely important in the world of marketing.
You may not be familiar with the term, but odds are high that you’ve seen an infographic recently. More than 60% of businesses report having created one or more in the past. And since infographics are 30 times more likely to be read than blogs or articles, that figure is not surprising. All evidence points to infographics being an effective marketing tool.
An infographic serves as a condensed version of an article, blog post, or web page. Effective infographics are both eye-grabbing and easy to skim. While the graphic may include text, it’s largely composed of images and charts so that it serves as an easy-to-understand piece of content.
An infographic needs to be visually striking. However, it’s just as important for it to serve a purpose. Generally speaking, an infographic should achieve one or more of the following goals:
Of course, the best way to achieve your marketing goals is through a multi-front attack. You can explore a topic in a blog post, draw up a related infographic, share that information via social media, and so on. Consider your infographic as just one tool in your marketing arsenal.
Speaking of multi-piece strategies, how do infographics fit in? And are they really worth the hassle?
The facts are in…and we can safely say yes, infographics are worth the effort. Here are a few figures from Search Logistics that point to their usefulness:
These are just a few of the compelling benefits of using charts and other visual graphics to portray information. What’s better, infographics are easy to incorporate into existing marketing strategies.
Give this type of content a try if you are interested in:
Infographics are especially helpful for businesses in information-driven industries. The technology, health, social justice, and travel industries are among the top producers of infographics for this very reason.
That said, one could argue that all industries are information-driven. Being an informed consumer is more than just a passing trend. And putting in the work to inform your consumers shows your dedication to becoming an ethical leader in your industry.
Of course, at the end of the day, the primary goal is for those informed consumers to purchase a good or service from your business. Infographics are the perfect way to portray needed information that can be processed quickly. As a result, you’re more likely to reach the end goal quickly.
Marketing is all about engaging with your audience. The best way to do that is through meaningful storytelling—which is part of why we recommend establishing brand guidelines to determine what your story is in the first place. The best infographics are ones that are easily distinguishable as belonging to your business.
In other words, infographics are another way to feed into the storytelling aspect of your marketing strategy. Some would argue that infographics are even more effective at captivating an audience than blog posts or articles are. Either way, they can serve as another means of reaching your target demographic and drawing them in with compelling content.
We’ve talked before about how marketing is a tapestry of different threads that serve a driving purpose. One of the best aspects of an infographic is that it’s a natural and easy thread to interweave with whatever else you have going on. Include it in a blog post, share it on social media, and send it to your email list. The possibilities are countless!
Remember when we said that people are more likely to click on links that they know lead to infographics? Well, this figure alone is a pretty big deal. The more traffic you bring to your website, the more favorable Google is to your website. This in turn drives even more traffic to your website (via a little process called SEO), which of course increases your opportunities to make a sale.
Pro Tip: to make your infographic even more effective in the SEO department, add alt text, a title, and a description for the image.
Okay, so let’s assume you’re sold on the idea of throwing an infographic into a blog post or two. The next question is…how?
To keep things simple, we highly recommend you go ahead and get yourself a graphic designer. Find someone whose work you appreciate and who is willing to familiarize themselves with your brand, its guidelines, and its storytelling objectives. This person will then be able to quickly and expertly create an infographic for your business as often as you’d like.
If that’s not currently possible, or not conducive to your budget, you can try an online design tool like Canva to create a graphic on your own. Either way, the best way to make an effective infographic is by following these steps:
Keep in mind that people naturally read from left to right and from top to bottom. So the best infographics will follow a logical and easy-to-scan order. As you continue to produce compelling graphics, you may identify trends as to what works and what doesn’t. Your business’s audience is unique, so some best practices can only be found through trial and error.
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