Infographics have become a popular tool for sharing information with customers, and for good reason. Carefully researched and artfully created, an infographic can present what might otherwise be a dry collection of data in an engaging visual format. Viewers can understand large amounts of information more quickly and easily when it’s presented via intuitive data visualizations. Used well, infographics can enhance your marketing strategy and give your followers a highly sharable piece with a compelling point behind it. But there are many infographic misconceptions going around.
Before you can succeed in the world of infographics, it’s important to have a thorough understanding of how these pieces work and what they can do. Taking the wrong approach to an infographic can have disastrous results, leaving viewers more confused than compelled and diluting the message you wanted to send. Find out what’s effective and what you must do to achieve it, and banish these infographic misconceptions from the mix.
Image via Flickr by geishaboy500
Some people mistakenly believe that infographics are all about the imagery. Though an infographic is a very visual way to communicate with your audience, it doesn’t need elaborate illustrations or graphics to get the point across. In fact, you should be very careful about using any images that don’t contribute directly to the story.
An infographic shouldn’t have meaningless embellishments that exist solely for aesthetic appeal. Every element of the piece should be part of a meaningful story. Infographic viewers seek informational value from everything included. Visuals that are purposeless simply create clutter and confuse your story. It’s far better to opt for a simple, streamlined infographic with minimal imagery than to overload the viewer with illustrations that don’t have value.
While an infographic does provide a valuable opportunity to enhance your piece with some well-chosen colors, you shouldn’t go over the top, creating a piece that’s bursting with color. The best way to properly brand your creation is with a simple palette of two or three colors. Incorporating any more will clutter your design and make it difficult for the viewer to properly discern the data.
It’s a myth that sticking to a simple color palate will leave your piece looking bland and boring. Simplicity is key in an infographic, as the images are intended for deep information purposes that go beyond aesthetics. Select your colors carefully and keep the design uncomplicated for the highest impact.
For the best infographic writing and design, it’s best to turn to a professional. Forget the misconceptions about infographics being expensive. You can get a high-quality piece with plenty of punch for an affordable price. For around $2,000 you can get a complete infographic that delivers a powerful story with clean, attractive imagery and an effective, well-branded design. At this price point, you should expect to get ideation for an appropriate topic, in-depth research, clear writing, and a visual infographic design.
Work with a company that includes edits in the price, so you can tweak as needed for the perfect level of collaboration. With this approach, you can step back from the time-consuming process of generating effective ideas backed by research. All you need to provide is a brief about your business and goals, and you’ll get a completed infographic that meets all your needs.
An infographic may seem like a blank canvas just begging to be filled with data, but it’s best to leave some of that space clean and clear. Your piece will ultimately have more impact if the eye isn’t overwhelmed with images, numbers, facts, and statistics. Give your data room to breathe by balancing information with white space in your design.
As you’re arranging data on the infographic, keep an eye on the overall flow of the piece. It should be easy and intuitive for the viewer to perceive a clear story that moves naturally from one point to another. Each piece of data should build naturally on those before it to present a compelling whole. Leaving white space in the right places will create a visual path that the viewer’s eye can follow to tie all your information together.
If you’re looking at an infographic as a way to turn a wordy blog into a sharable graphic, you’re approaching this type of media wrong. Data visualization should be the main focus of an infographic. You might include some how-to illustrations or brief bits of text, but this is not the place for paragraphs.
Keep full sentences to a minimum in your infographic, and don’t string together more than two or three at a time. If you have more text than visuals, you’re better off presenting the information in a traditional article. Use headings to break up text and bullet points to present it in bite-sized pieces. Aside from an introduction and conclusion, you shouldn’t need much else in the way of text.
An infographic is more than just a compilation of data. You must choose data that tells a story. This is why ideation is such a critical part of the infographic creation process. During the ideation stage, you’ll flesh out the concept for your infographic. Here, you identify the key point that you’re trying to make and determine the most compelling way to do so.
An infographic that presents an abundance of data about stray animals in the United States may be informational, but it lacks a clear purpose. What do you want your viewer to do with the data? Are you encouraging adoption, promoting spaying and neutering, or identifying a potential pitfall of breeding more pets? You should make your purpose clear so the data you’re presenting within the piece leads the reader to an important and compelling conclusion.
Let go of your infographic misconceptions so you can use these marketing tools properly and to their full potential. The possibilities for effective promotion are endless when you use your infographics right.