If you’re old enough to remember, you know how USA Today got its start—taking the news of the day and synthesizing it down to easy-to-read and understand shorter news stories. It was the beginning of the bulleted lists and color coded newspaper sections. That format has successfully continued for more than 25 years allowing readers to get a sense of what’s going on in the world by glancing at the news.
Today, we rely on multiple digital sources far more than print to get our news and information. We check the online newspaper version on our computers, read Facebook and check Twitter from our smartphones, and use tablets to keep up with LinkedIn. Whew. That’s a lot of information coming at you. No wonder we often say, “I remember seeing that somewhere….”
With the digital age came the invention of the infographic. Remember Wordle, the visual display of a variety of words in a graphic layout? The infographic has come a long way since Wordle, with the addition of pictures, graphics, avatars, multiple fonts and colors. The infographic is a visual representation of formatting data–that could be a page of boring numbers and statistics—in a visually pleasing way that creates instant understanding. Since most people tend to remember what they’ve seen, rather than what they’ve read, the infographic is the perfect tool to help your message stand out in an already noisy digital environment. The visual format helps makes your point easy to understand and remember.
An infographic can be used to show
- Poll results
- Customer survey results
- Sales statistics
- Comparative and contrasting data
- How a process flows or a device works
- The key components of a news story or trend
- The structure of a business approach, model or industry
At Bottom Line, we’ve developed infographics for our clients to help them tell their unique stories. Avatars and colorful key statistics tell the story of the Affordable Care Act to readers of a large community magazine. A poster-sized, table-top display used by an emergency medical services provider quickly and easily shows the size, reach and expertise of the company to visitors at events. A detailed, but highly visual, description of a complex management system helps targeted audiences better understand the narrative description captured in a companion book. A simple, large infographic captures both the structure of a healthcare quality improvement organization, as well as its members’ key results.
All these infographics can be shared in multiple formats—digital, print, presentations, video and more. And, because we work with skilled graphic designers, we often repurpose key elements of an infographic use in social media and additional print and web placements.
While you can create your own infographics with many online programs, the more sophisticated your content and the greater the opportunities to repurpose elements of the final graphic, the more likely you are to find success and satisfaction with a professional designer.
Words are great, and we love them in our shop, and linking only the most powerful words with equally powerful graphics and images in a striking design is often the most compelling way to tell and see a story. Try it, and discover for yourself the power of an infographic.