Infographics part 1: should I commission an infographic?

Oct 7, 2014 by
Infographics part 1: should I commission an infographic?

While infographics were all the rage last year, the hype surrounding them is not what it once was. Thanks to the emergence of a horde of terrible infographics, people have grown disenchanted with this form of content marketing. However, despite the abundance of bad infographics, it’s important not to throw out the baby with the bath water.

why infographics 1“With all the competition for consumer attention on the web, it takes more than just creative wording to rivet eyeballs. An infographic is a compelling way to use visual content to tell a rich story at a glance.” – Jason Miller

High quality infographics are still highly effective at conveying complex messages and demonstrating the meaning behind a sea of statistics, all wrapped up in an image which immediately captures an audience’s attention. By mixing text, data and vivid imagery all in one easy-to-share graphic, you can explain anything you want in a way that will resonate with people on a deeper level than would be possible using prose. Before you have an infographic commissioned, here are some things you may want to consider.

What kind of infographic should I go for?

Infographics are used for a wide range of applications. You may wish to create an infographic to make a PowerPoint presentation more exciting, or perhaps you’d like something visually compelling alongside your sales copy to increase conversions. Sometimes an infographic doesn’t have to pertain to your business at all, but could answer common questions surrounding your industry or simply entertain people. The advantage here is that if it goes viral it will seriously boost your brand awareness, bringing you more traffic and customers as a consequence.

The choices are almost endless, but the key is to make sure that any infographics you commission fulfil a purpose within your content marketing strategy. As with any business activity, don’t fall into the trap of doing something just because everyone else is doing it. Making sure you have concrete reasoning behind and goals for your project should make the choice of what style of infographic you need to pursue.

What are the stages involved in making an infographic?

Whether you decide to produce your infographic internally or outsource it to an why infographics 2agency, there are four stages that contribute to a successful project.

1. Idea generation

Coming up with a good idea is the toughest part. First, you should think of your goals. If your goal is to go viral, infographics that tackle a contentious issue, present a list of interesting facts or provide context behind current events tend to do very well. For businesses wishing to further the understanding of their products and services, using an infographic to demonstrate the technologies used in a way that isimmediately comprehensible is a winning strategy.

2. Data collation

Once a topic has been decided on, the next phase involves researching and collating all relevant data so it can subsequently be formulated into a captivating design and/or compelling narrative. Statistics that substantiate your message are a crucial part of this process as they can later be reworked into graphs and charts to back up your point. Always provide the evidence for anything you assert!

3. Design

Here comes the fun part – working all of your poignant arguments, important facts and statistics into a stunning work of art. Stylistically, it’s up to you whether you want to create something cartoony or realistic, emotive or factual, and this should entirely depend on your particular niche and branding.

Including your colour scheme and other brand elements is also recommended, particularly for infographics which will go on your site or for tradeshow presentations, although be careful not to “over-brand” the piece. The purpose of any infographic should be to inform first and promote second.

4. Distribution

why infographics 3While a reputable agencywill guarantee you a high quality infographic based on your requirements, it’s up to you to hustle if you want it to go viral. If you want your infographic to get shared, it needs to be promoted on social media, and ideally you should have a word with your most socially influential associates who can share it themselves. Infographic submission sites are another way to increase the chances of your infographic going viral.

In conclusion

Now more than ever, people are experiencing severe attention deficit disorder! You only have a matter of seconds to capture your audience’s attention before they click away. While killer headlines and excellently structured blog content are incredibly important aspects of digital content marketing, why not maximise the chances of peaking your audience’s interest with some stunning imagery as well?

(Images from Why infographics? by Mammoth Infographics)