According to Wikipedia, an infographic or information graphic is a, graphic visual representation of information, data or knowledge intended to present complex information quickly and clearly. And, while it may be a clich that a picture is worth a thousand words, it is a marketing reality that an infographic is worth at least 10 times that.
A recent smartinsights.com post notes that Google Trends indicates an 800% increase in infographic popularity between 2010 and 2012. That’s not surprising given today’s fast-paced, short attention-span world that demands information in entertaining, easy-to-digest nuggets. That’s why it seems everyone is jumping on the infographic bandwagon with varying degrees of effectiveness and success. (At PaySimple, we’re no exception. Check out our recent 2013 Summer Small Biz Recap infographic post.)
So, are infographics a good idea for your small business marketing program? This infographic on infographics provides some compelling reasons to consider using them to build your brand and promote your expertise. For example, infographics are 30 times more likely to be read than text articles, and 40% of people respond better to visual representations of information than text representations of the same information. Plus, your customers are actively talking about infographics the hash tag #infographic? was tweeted over 56,000 times in March, 2012. Further, you can expect on average a 12% increase in website traffic after publishing an infographic.
Creating infographics seems deceptively simple, which is probably why there are so many inconsequential, or just plain bad ones out there. If you are going to embark on the infographic path, make sure that what you create will have value and resonate with your customers. A good place to start is a recent Small Business Trends post, How to Leverage Infographics for B2B Marketing which not only provides helpful advice for all business types, but also suggests cases where infographics are not the best choice for a small business. Another post, A checklist of 10 best practices for creating infographics for marketing, helps you put your thoughts together and create something not only worth remembering, but also worth sharing.
While sharing new, interesting and insightful data is the beginning of a good infographic, you can’t forget about the graphic component. It is important that your infographic both look professional and be visually interesting. If you don’t have a graphic artist on staff, and don’t have the talent yourself, there are many online sources that can help.
A great place to start is easelly. Register to use this online tool by providing your name and email address, and get access to one of the easiest ways to create professional looking infographics available. You simply choose one of many templates, add your data, customize the design, save it, and then export it as a .jpg file to use anywhere you wish. Watch the video on the homepage to see how it’s done.
For other infographic creation tools, read 20+ Tools To Create Your Own Infographics . If you’d prefer to work offline in your own software, a number of sites offer free infographic template libraries. The following are worth checking out:
- A combination template/instruction toolkit from HubSpot for PowerPoint
- 30 Templates and Vector Toolkits (EPS files)
- 22 Free PSD Infographic Templates (PhotoShop)
So, the next time you come across an interesting piece of data about your industry, or have a unique insight about your customer base, consider publishing it as an infographic. If you’re still unsure about what makes a great infographic, take some time to study the field. Each week, the Infographic Journal publishes 35-50 of what it deems to be the best infographics on the web.
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