February 06, 2013
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Remember the old adage ‘A picture is worth a thousand words’? Well, here at Mediaworks, we thought we would ask the business world whether or not they agreed by conducting an online qualitative survey on the power of infographics.
Using online professional networking directory, LinkedIn, Mediaworks posed the following question to various industry experts:
The results indicated that the majority of business practitioners thought that infographics were a powerful online marketing tool, which can help to effectively develop a brand, providing they are done properly.
Steve Jobs, late visionary Apple CEO, once said that time is the most precious resource that we have; in todays ‘always-on’ culture, a well-constructed infographic has the power to ‘get the point across quickly’ (Yuricon); ‘make complex lists of information understandable’ (Zennie62.com); ‘effectively communicate with a population that is becoming increasingly visual’; and ‘convey information in a memorable format’ (Prosper by Design).
However, it was also readily apparent that certain businesses were unsure of how to harness the true marketing potential of the infographic.
Some business practitioners believed that infographics run the risk of becoming ‘another quick and dirty way to promote a product’ (THINK DIFFERENT[LY]), which suggests that some firms are devaluing infographics in pursuit of meaningless ‘likes’ and ‘fans’ (Communications Plus).
The majority of industry experts believed that the secret to developing and promoting your brand lies in the quality, rather than quantity of your infographic. It is all too easy for an infographic to ‘become bogged down and hard to read’, ‘appear too messy’ and ‘hide the information rather than illustrate it’.
However, if you focus on keeping your infographic ‘small, clean and punchy’, ‘humorous’, ‘well laid out’ and ‘well executed’, you are likely to create an infographic with instant viral appeal, which will ultimately help your business to gain numerous good-quality links to your site.
Links are an inevitable by-product of creating powerful infographics, as many people are happier to share visual content as opposed to written content; this can be seen in the meteoric rise of social media sites such as Pinterest, Instagram and Tumblr.
As one of the UK’s leading online marketing companies, Mediaworks are able to harness the power of link building & infographics to increase online visibility for our clients. If you would like to discuss your aims for the online presence of your business, feel free to contact one of our digital marketing specialists.
Written by Craig Bradshaw – mediaworks
Thank you to all of those who took part:
Here are all the quotes:
‘Melissa Galt – Keynote Speaker ~ Success Coach ~ Relationship Marketing Specialist, Lead Generation, Customer Service, Touch Campaigns
They are a brilliant visual tool to convey information in a format that is memorable. They are likely the first step in up and coming formats, definitely brand builders. www.todaybydesign.com’
‘Cody Sharp – Inbound Marketing Manager at Delivra. Delivra = Email Marketing Software
I think infographics are typically misused. In the beginning, it was a quick way to convey statistics but now they are being used for things that would be better served by whitepapers. IMHO, few are done well.
I do think their usage will decrease over the coming year/s as the benefit of doing one will decrease. There are so many of them at this point and so few that are done really well, it can be a challenge to find ones that really bring in traffic and convert visitors to leads or sales and yet, good ones are time consuming and expensive to create.’
‘Brad Hauck – President – National Speakers Association of Australia Qld Chapter
I’m sure their like any new tool, they’ll be popular for a while then people will stop reading them and they’ll be replaced by something new. http://www.aiimtraining.com.au/’
‘Kyle Clouthier – CEO/Founder of Boostsocialmedia.net (Established Supplier for Real Targeted Social Media Fans)
Infographics is a way to catch people’s attention, at a glance. It is fast becoming a staple medium in most Social Media such as facebook and moreover, in Pinterest where it is a Photo driven social site. it is very attractive and can be a very effective tool if it’s laid out and executed well, like embedding a link to a website, so it would be easier for guests to Digest the information it portrays. Yes, it is important promotions and marketing. http://www.infographicboard.com’
‘Tim Dickinson -Principal Customer Success Executive at CA Technologies
Infographics are both a fad AND can be important for link building and brand promotion.
Infographics are in many ways an extension of graphs and charts. Humans have long found it useful to capture numerical information in visual form. It can help us perceive trends and relative differences. You’ve undoubtedly heard before that humans are very visual creatures.
Infographics are an evolution of this. And while their novelty is past, and some people are already over them, I think they’re here to stay. Just like a chart they can be done poorly or they can be done well.
I’ve provided three links below. None are brand new. The first describes how infographics might already be overdone (i.e., they’ve “jumped the shark”). The second is how they might be evolving. The third shows people who’ve used infographics as their resume. https://www.linkedin.com/in/timinator
‘Karen Maskall Founder Pledging for Change Premium Member Site and Ethical Business Directory. Giving Back
I love some of the infographics that out there and I know many have been added onto multiple sites , which is a bit like using duplicate articles in some ways unless there is a unique description included in the post before the infographic itself.
But some infographics are too messy, and often have text that is so small it cannot be read.
Conveying information with charts and graphs on an infographic is sometimes a good idea but at the end of the day unless this is really clear then I’ve seen many that are essentially quite useless.
Presentation of factual infographics can be quite boring unless they are eye catching, unique and can capture my attention with perhaps a bit of humour included too.
I was invited to host an infographic on creating a vertical garden ( in my sites niche) and at same time was offered the unique introduction to it also. I know this Infographic is now on many sites but all of them have unique intro text accompanying them. (see link below)
So if you are going to ask a site to host your infographic makes sure you give them some unique text too.
‘Hanna Takala takes organizations and experts into social media, clients e.g. Raisio, Helsingin energia, City of Salo
I think infographics are definitely both fad and important branding tools. Especially if these graphics evolve into something rich, more interactive they go beyond fad.
I could imagine, that in future serivices like Thing Link could improve infographics and their SEO.
‘Susan VonAchen Social Media Strategist
I’d love to see some of your infographics! I love them as well and agree they are especially helpful in demonstrating an idea. People are getting more and more visual as photo sharing is on the rise and want a picture to tell the story. I did hear infographics would be fading away this year, but that may have been from someone very techy, who knows.
‘Lucas Walker Creativity meets hustle
1) Infographcis as a marketing tool from a branding point of view are very faddy. As more and more people use them they level of design needs to increase to stand out from the crowd.
2) The principles behind them are here to stay. Infographics are a great way to communicate a lot of complicated data in a clean and beautiful way.
We pivoted from the traditional infographics space to the reporting and analytics space. Now we are focused on helping communicate lots of intricate data to an internal audience.
‘Erica Friedman Social Media Optimizer, Publisher at ALC Publishing, President of Yuricon
Infographics fail to capture *me*, but I am not everyone, by which I mean, some people find the graphic part more eye-catching and comprehensible and others look for the text first.
The power of infographics *should* be that they get the point across in multiple ways, quickly. The reality is that they are often clogged, hard to read, full of erroneous editorializing and unrelated “facts.”
Keep ’em small, clean and punchy and they can be powerful. http://socialoptimized.blogspot.com‘
‘Lyndon Johnson Disrupting the PR industry. Helping entrepreneurs to tell their story.
They’re not a fad and can be great for brand building. The caveat on both these opinions is that they are done properly.
The world is becoming more graphical and a well conceived, well designed infographic with credible, supportable data that illustrates a market trend or answers an important question they will always be in demand. If, however, they’re seen as another quick and dirty way to promote a product then they’ll lose their value and become a commodity [much like the majority of press releases].
‘Tabitha Jean Naylor Results Oriented Marketing Extraordinaire; Sales Guru; Certified Inbound Marketer
I don’t think that the use of infographics is a fad. It has been around for a long time; it’s just now that it is being used a lot. Infographics allows you to share a ton of information in a more fun and easy to digest way – unlike your traditional graphs or whatnot. You can adjust your infographics layout and icons based on the brand image that you want to exude. Do you want your brand to be perceived as serious, fun, or creative? You can support your brand image with all your marketing efforts, even with a simple infographic.
‘Zennie Abraham [LION] – toplinked.com – Zennie62.com
An infographic is a story-telling tool that is used to make complex lists of information understandable. We have so much data thrown at us every day that a cartoon-like presentation is more memorable and fun than the norm. I don’t think infographs are a fad; my interest is in what they may morph into given tech improvements. Try making one yourself to see its advantages.’
‘Kay Paumier Marketing communications consultant, public relations (PR) consultant and writer
I think the answer comes down to the quality of the infographic.
I think some are fads–the kind that try to cram in every bit of information, as if bigger is better. Too many images. Too many different fonts. Every color in the rainbow and then some. Such infographics hide the information; they don’t illustrate it.
On the other hand, clear infographics can be a way of communicating with a population that is becoming increasingly visual. Probably the classic example of such an infographic is one of the oldest: Minard’s space-and-time illustration of Napoleon’s ill-fated march on Russia. Edward Tufte’s classic work, “The Visual Display of Quantifiable Information,” gives a solid explanation of the importance of illustration rather than simple text.
‘Tina Brinkley Potts Keynote Speaker | Social Media | Online Marketing Trainer | Business Consultant | Business Development | Local SEO |
Remember the old saying, “A picture speaks 1000 words”. Just look at the rise of social sites like Tumblr, Pinterest and Instagram.
Infographics will be around for a while.
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