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Visual Creatures: The History and Use of Infographics

Visual Creatures: The History and Use of Infographics

Are you a right-brain person or a left-brain person? You’ve probably heard the descriptions of both — the right hemisphere of the brain is associated with creativity, imagination and insight while the left hemisphere of the brain focuses on logic, reasoning, numbers and language.

I believe a graphic designer must use both sides of their brain to be successful. Graphic designers are taking information — sometimes dry, boring information — and through the use of text, images and graphics, turning it into something visually appealing that communicates a specific message.

As a graphic designer, I believe infographics can be fun exercises in using both the creative and logical parts of your brain. For businesses, infographics are a great way to deliver information to your customers in a format they will remember and, dare I say, enjoy looking at.

Data visualization has been around for centuries. A map is an example of geographical information presented in a visual way, and maps have been around for over 7,000 years. From there, visualized data grew as civilizations were able to gather more and more data — from 18th century export and import charts to Florence Nightingale’s “rose diagrams” showing causes of mortality in the 19th century.The History of Infographics

Infographics

Fast forward hundreds of years and infographics as marketing tools have had the biggest increase in usage among B2B marketers in the last four years — now at 65%. And, they don’t seem to be slowing in popularity. Research shows traffic on websites increases by 12% after uploading an infographic and a business’s brand awareness is enhanced by 82% by using an infographic.

Infographic

Benefits of using infographics in your marketing content

We are visual creatures.

Infographics take advantage of our built-in preference for visual content: 90% of the information transmitted to the brain is visual. Most of us would rather look at an infographic instead of reading a long passage of text. In addition, a summary of facts and figures in an infographic is easier to scan and remember. Research shows that visual cues help increase the memorability of the information over text alone.

Infographics are perfect for sharing over social platforms.

Attractive infographics with useful information can spread across the internet and world easily —a like here, and a like there can quickly push the infographic to a wider audience.

Increase brand awareness.

By adding your logo to a great infographic that is being shared, liked, and reposted, you are putting your company’s name in front of potential customers.

Things to keep in mind when considering using an infographic

Keep it simple and focused.

One of the benefits of infographics is their ability to present complex information in a digestible format.

Do the research and have good data.

Having a creditable infographic is as important as the visual appeal. Remember, it’s data + design.

Turn the data into a story.

Taking data and presenting it as a visual story that catches the viewers’ minds and eyes is the goal of an effective infographic.

Hire a graphic designer to create the infographic.

If you are planning to take the time to research and develop content for an infographic, having a professional graphic designer translate your information into a spectacular infographic makes sense.

Infographics are a great way to summarize information into a visual format that increases viewer engagement — a positive for any business. As a graphic designer, I enjoy being able to transform data, complex ideas, or dry information into an easy to digest and memorable infographic for clients.

By Annalisha Johnson, Graphic Designer, Capture Higher Ed