The overall goal of creating marketing content is for the right people to see it, engage with it, and form a connection with your business as a result. A business needs to maintain its brand’s voice, message, tone, color scheme, and much more to build rapport with the right audience. This is especially important when designing visual content such as infographics.
You can’t just slap a logo on your infographic and call it a day. It takes more subtle but detailed means to keep an infographic on brand, so check out the keys to clever, effective infographic branding. With these in mind, your business should put out content that fulfills the right look and feel to engage your audience.
Figure Out Your Brand
New businesses might have to spend time on this step before doing anything else. Naturally, you won’t be able to focus on what sort of style your infographic should be aiming for if you haven’t figured it out for your own business. Think about what your business offers, the expectations of that industry, and what makes you different. An all-natural, kid-safe cleaning product company, for example, could be lighthearted and silly, but also a bit sentimental in tone, tugging at the heartstrings of parents who love their kids.
Once you’ve established your tone, everything else should fall gradually into place. When choosing color schemes, fonts, image types, speech tones, and more, ask yourself if it suits the brand tone you settled on. It also helps to determine a brand message and give it equal weight in choosing other brand elements. To continue with the cleaning product example, the message there could be, “Love your home and your kids.” In some cases, your slogan can also be your message, only in fewer words.
Color and Tone
Every major graphic design aspect is worth studying to see the possibilities for your brand. If you only want to study a single element and leave the rest to designers, however, make it color. Colors have a massive influence on first impressions and how we perceive images. Green is inherently more peaceful while red is assertive, and yellow is more nervous and cautionary while blue is calming. Your color choices and schemes for infographics will likely depend on the colors associated with your brand, but it’s a bit more complicated than that.
If you look up infographics and similar media by McDonald’s, for instance, you’ll see plenty of orange and red. But look for other McDonald’s branding that uses different color mixes, and think of why that is. Ones associated with their coffee beverages have earthy, mocha tones, and ones based on the Olympics use that primary color scheme. But one thing you might notice is that, regardless, the core brand colors show up somewhere. Even when you have good reason to use off-brand colors for your infographic, find ways to integrate them creatively with your on-brand colors.
Communication and Guides
Image via Flickr by DaGoaty
Chances are you’ll be hiring writers and designers to create infographics for you, or you’ll use team members with the appropriate skills. This means you need to communicate how your infographic should appear and what it will take for it to stay on brand. Even if that’s not the case, it helps to outline your goals to yourself. The best way to do this is by coming up with a style guide, if not for each individual infographic then at least for all the ones made in a particular campaign.
Style guides outline what the content is supposed to achieve, do, and not do. If you decide to go with multiple style guides, it also helps to organize the core rules into a chart of specific brand voices. Make it as easy as possible to understand, and if all else fails, meet directly or communicate in other ways throughout the process, aside from checking the mockups. The more involved you are in explaining your message to whoever is making the infographic, the less time you’ll waste.
Update or Stay Consistent
Like any long-term business, your brand will likely shift and change over time. Look at any major company, and you’ll see the changes in its branding, based on market research. If you decide to enter a new year with a more serious brand tone, for example, you’ll need to take that into account with future infographics. It might also be a good idea to redesign old infographic ideas with your new brand style, if they still match, as that also gives you more mileage out of a single idea.
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Sometimes it’s best to establish a more permanent, infographic-only tone that never changes, regardless of how your business’s general branding evolves each quarter. This will give you a little less immediate appeal based on trends, but it also establishes a clean visual language and sense of consistency, inviting those who enjoyed one of your infographics to look at all the others. It’s a tough call and one that must be made on an individual basis.
Keeping your infographic on brand can be a tricky balancing act of responsibilities, but the successful results are much more attractive and engaging to potential customers and clients than one with vague or mismatched branding. What’s more, customers can feel betrayed and outraged by a truly mismatched brand mishap. You must exercise good business sense combined with common design etiquette. Remembering the tips above should keep you well-prepared.
Because infographics can be significant investments of time and resources, it only makes sense to ensure you get the basics handled and that there are no blind spots for success. Be willing to entrust the work to experts, inside your business or not, to handle such complicated content. Relying on outside assistance, such as the expert teams at CopyPress, might be the most secure route, thanks to our experience in building and branding infographics for businesses of all kinds. Whatever you decide, give it your all on making fantastic content, and good luck.