More than 90 percent of information transmitted to the brain is visual. Furthermore, visuals are processed up to 60,000 times faster in the brain than text. When working with a lot of heavy data like we do at qSample, we understand the importance and benefit of presenting data in a visual manner.
Relaying and communicating data through a visual context involves the use of a variety of visual elements, such as drawings, illustrations and electronic images. When done correctly, using visual aids to present data will be more effective and easier to retain than simply presenting the data itself.
Enter Infographics. Infographics are essentially a means of displaying data and information in the form of a graph or picture.
Here’s one that qSample used to present data about Ivy Leaguers!
A well designed infographic that speaks to your audience and conveys useful, fun, and interesting information, can get picked up from your website or your social media pages and re-posted multiple times by your social media followers.
It goes beyond simply presenting information in an interesting way. Infographics can generate leads, build traffic and advance your brand. It arms your audience with something they can repost and share with friends and increases your presence across the Internet.
Want to give it a go, but lack designer skills and or experience? Don’t fret, there are plenty of free infographic tools available online. Here the top four as chosen by the qSample Staff:
- Ease.ly: This is about as user friendly and simple as it gets. It even comes 2 minute tutorial video highlighting these steps: You pick a theme, then using drag and drop, pick objects, add text, choose colors and arrange everything until it’s the way you want it. One drawback is it doesn’t create charts; for that you can use one of the many free online chart generators.
- Venngage: Another very user friendly site, Vennage offers the best quality and quantity of templates among the other infographic building sites we’re highlighting in this article. Makes a beginner’s final product look like it was designed by a pro.
- Infogr.am: This site offers less templates than the others, but it has the advantage of a chart generator so there is no need to import a chart if your layout calls for it. What makes Infogr.am stand out is it can also make charts interactive, a feature not found on most other free services.
- Piktochart: More versatile than some others, Piktochart offers a lot of templates, shapes, and icons. Especially handy when trying to fit everything where you want it, are the multiple sizes it allows. It’s another drag and drop. Additional features are available in the premium version (gives you access to over 110 themes and over 1,500 graphics), but you can build great graphics for free.
Here are a couple of tips on what your infographic should include/be:
- A theme. Keep it simple. It should be easy for anyone to identify what your graphic is about given the icons, color scheme, graphics and pictures being used. If you create a graphic which is so complex in nature that it’s like trying to find the hidden picture in a magic eye calendar, your audience will switch off and it’s message will be lost.
- Make sure you know your audience and tailor the graphic to their taste to increase the chance of viral sharing.
- Your company signage, logo and or colors to maintain brand consistency as well as to make sure that once viral, you always serve as the originator
- Attention grabbing, resonating and memorable
- Make sure that the colors are easy on the eye. Avoid loud color schemes
- Make sure that your image is searchable in Google images to increase your exposure