Why you should be using infographics

Infographics – images that relay information – are popping up across all industries. Indeed, we’ve seen a rise in the number of our clients who want to incorporate a well-designed, graphic solution into their marketing strategy. But why are they such a popular marketing tool? And how can you use them to help your business?

Why do they work?

Put simply, infographics are a really useful way of delivering content because they get your message across in an incredibly simple way. The average human attention span is now about 8 seconds, and since your brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text, infographics are an effective way to attract and keep your audience’s attention.

Certainly, when we learn that consumers are 30 times more likely to read an infographic than text article, or that infographics used in marketing campaigns can increase engagement by over 35 per cent, it makes for a compelling argument.

How do they increase engagement?

Infographics are easily digested and incredibly shareable, so they’re perfect for capturing attention online and getting your organisation seen by a wider audience. If people like your infographic, they’ll share it and link back to your website.

The best infographics have strong emotional pull for your audience because they can get their message across very quickly. Using less space than it would take to write about an idea, infographics can persuade, surprise or delight the viewer and encourage them to respond. According to Gareth Cook, editor of the ‘Best American Infographics’ series, the most compelling infographics are persuasive because “they make an abstract subject concrete – let viewers put their hands around it”. By making your concept tangible, you’ll help your audience to believe in it.

Conversely, the least effective can leave your audience confused, overwhelmed, or even just bored. So what should you do to get it right? Here’s our answers to your questions:

What should the subject be?

Every business has a story; infographics can help you tell it visually and encourage your audience to feel connected to your message. You’ll no doubt have a whole range of statistics that demonstrate what you’ve accomplished this month, this quarter, this year. A well-executed infographic can easily turn this data into eye-catching visuals that will make your audience look for more.

But don’t limit yourself to big data sets – you could also consider using an infographic to explain relationships visually, or to establish your expert knowledge of a particular subject area or industry. Think creatively, and you’ll find many areas you can exploit.

Where should I use them?

In addition to your public-facing communication, don’t be afraid to think about how you can use infographics to boost engagement in your internal reports, mission statements, financial reports, presentations…the list is endless.

How can I make them look great?

  1. Tailor your content so that it speaks directly to your audience – avoid being too generic.
  2. Don’t forget your call to action, as you would in a text article.
  3. Stick to a reasonable size, around 600 to 735 pixels wide and 5000 pixels high.
  4. Add your logo in a prime but unobtrusive position to boost your online branding.
  5. If you have a lot of content then consider creating a series rather than one overly long infographic. Sharing your content in bitesize chunks – perhaps 1500 pixels in height – will keep viewers interested.
  6. Be consistent in style – don’t mix photos and graphic art.
  7. Show restraint – although colours may draw the eye, limit your palette and stick to simple icons.
  8. Use white space to give viewers a rest from all those visuals.
  9. Stick with a maximum of two fonts in no more than three sizes.

If you have a project that would benefit from a visual treatment, contact Stacey Jackson to find out more about Solcroft’s creative services.