Originally this piece was going to be an oh-so-clever infographic about infographics – sort of like the Inception of blog posts, but hopefully a lot shorter and with a less ambiguous ending.
Unfortunately the talented folk at NeoMam Studios already had this idea, and they happen to be lot better at MS Paint than I am. So, to kick things off, here’s them telling you almost everything you need to know about why people respond to infographics.
For those of you unwilling to blindly follow my links, here’s a really brief summary of why infographics are a great way to spread a message:
Shareability and readability
- Infographics attract 448 more actions on social media than normal posts
- Potentially, 90% of information that comes to the brain is visual
- 40% of people will respond better to visual information than plain text
Marketing agencies are now well aware of the impact of a good infographic. They are often used as “top of funnel pieces” where they can draw attention to issues and present top level messaging in an way that’s both entertaining and informative. They will quite often have a call to action to do something further like read a white paper, check out an ebook, or hold your murderous cat accountable for its sins.
“So…” I pretend to hear you ask, “how do I write one?”
A short guide to writing infographics
Keep your THREE target audiences in mind:
- The Viewer
Your content must be engaging, informative and entertaining. Most importantly it must speak to the reader on their level, tell them something new, and make them want to take action.
- The Client
Your client will initially see your infographic as a plain text document. So as not to confuse them, make sure they can easily visualise it in its final format. Include bullet points, and use the layout options at your disposal to illustrate the visual elements of the finished piece.
- The designer
Give your designer a clear idea of how key points should look – what goes where, and what should be made to stand out. Remember, the design elements of your infographic should simplify understanding and bring the facts or data to life.
Remember that brevity is key…
The irony of writing a blog about infographics isn’t lost on us here. The key to creating a successful piece of content is keeping words to a minimum and letting the facts do the talking.
- The average user will spend just 3 minutes reading an infographic
…And that headers will get you ahead
Split your content into manageable modules that put your message across succinctly. Give these modules headers that are short, snappy and to the point.
- 90% of people are drawn to infographics because of catchy titles and headers.
Choose an overarching theme – and stick to it
A good infographic should have a story that holds everything together – and helps you keep to a single metaphor throughout.
And – most importantly – show, don’t tell
Images that represent the data you’re displaying can help visual learners more immediately digest content.
There are other things you need to keep in mind when writing good visual content, but for infographics these three are super important.
The dos and don’ts in three infographic exemplars
Is Elon Musk the real Iron Man? It sounds like a feature in Wired, but why sit down and read 2,000 words when you can absorb this beauty?
Over at The Guardian they found an infographic so bad they wrote an entire piece on it. If you’ve ever been tempted to arbitrarily represent business with chickens then let this be a warning to you.
Go on, understand this. I dare you.
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