Given the choice, would you rather get a heap of information in the form of written text, or in the form of smartly designed images and graphics? If you’re like most people, odds are, you’re going to choose the latter. As Thomson Reuters points out, the use of graphics and images helps to increase people’s ability to comprehend, recollect, and retain information. If infographics aren’t a part of your content marketing plan just yet, now is the time to add them. Here’s why and how to use infographics.

Why Use Infographics?

The biggest reason to use infographics in your content marketing is because the vast majority — 90 percent — of information that gets transmitted to the brain is visual information, according to Thomson Reuters.

There are a few other reasons to use infographics. For one thing, people are three times as likely to share an infographic as they are to share other forms of content. For another, people are 30 times more likely to read an infographic than they are a piece of textual content.

What Does an Infographic Need to Succeed?

That said, it’s not enough to simply take some information, add a couple of pretty pictures or graphics, and call it a day. Like any other type of content, infographics need a few key elements to succeed:

A specific audience.

Keep in mind who you’re talking to when creating your infographics. Doing so will help you determine not only the type of info to share, but also how to structure and design the infographic.

A singular focus.

The more cluttered and packed with information an infographic is, the more difficult it will be for people to parse. Make sure your infographics are focused, and that they only contain the most relevant and useful info.

An organized structure and flow.

When designing the infographic, remember how people read and process information. It should flow top to bottom and left to right. Don’t make people’s eyes jump around the graphic.

More graphics than text.

Getting the balance right between graphics and textual information in an infographic can be tricky — especially if you are used to writing text-heavy content pieces like blog posts and articles.

A good size.

The right size for an infographic should be like the bowl of porridge Goldilocks finally decides to eat — neither too big, nor too small. You want the graphic to be big enough to fit all of your information, but you don’t want it to be so large that people get lost in it or miss the plot. You also want to pay attention to the size of any text in the infographic. It should be large enough at all times that people can read it without having to click “enlarge.”

A call to action.

The call to action, or CTA, is the “so what” of the infographic. It lets people know what to do next, and why — and is a must have. Otherwise, why bother creating an infographic to begin with?

What Info Works Best With Infographics?

Not every type of content works well in infographic form. Usually, the best type of info for an infographic is data and statistics. Unfortunately, reading a block of text that’s full of numbers and percentages usually makes people want to nod off. But if you present that information in graphical form, with large, bold numerals and vibrant colors, they are more likely to pay attention.

Infographics are also good for explaining how complicated machines work, for breaking down the anatomy or structure of an object or living creature, and for drawing comparisons between two items. You can also use infographics to explain history in a timeline format.

Creative Examples of Infographics

infographic_of_infographics

The Infographic of Infographics.

Not to get super meta, but this infographic explaining infographics is a great example of the form.

Fonts & Colors Infographic

Fonts and Colors.

This infographic breaks down the most popular colors and font types used by brands around the world. It’s pretty dry and dull information, but the visual presentation makes it engaging.

How THings Work Infographic

How Things Work.

This collection of infographics uses visuals to break down how objects such as cameras and smartphones work. It’s also a bit cheeky, and includes infographics that detail the components that make a good cup of coffee or a slice of cake.

Dos & Don'ts of Table Manners Infographic

Do’s and Don’ts of Table Manners.

You know that different cultures have different etiquette rules and expectations. This infographic highlights a few of the more under-the-radar etiquette differences.

Infographics can be a great way to connect with your audience and get your point across. But it’s more important that you know why you’re using one — and how to use it. Don’t simply throw an infographic together and hope for the best. The best infographics are entertaining, but they are also useful and informative, which is what you want all of your content marketing to be.

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