Infographics are more than just pretty pictures. They’re also a great way of visually conveying data and making sure it sticks in people’s minds. So for those of you wanting to brush up your knowledge, or if you share the love for these awesome data visualizations that have become an overnight sensation, here is a quick overview of a few of the reasons why visualization is important.
1. People have really short attention spans
A lot of companies with huge amounts of research or statistical data struggle to get people to engage with, or in some cases, even read it. The bottom line is that pie charts and graphs are not going to cut it anymore and online users are looking for engaging ways to share information.
Life is so busy and we are overwhelmed with content: if something doesn’t immediately catch our attention and grab us, we tend to move on. The stats show that online users decide to leave a website or continue browsing it in the first 2-4 seconds of seeing the page.
With very little time to convince people to stick around, infographics and visualisations are a more effective way to literally catch people’s eye, and draw them in.
2. It’s all about engagement
As I said earlier — we are bombarded with hundreds of thousands of messages every day, often making it difficult to filter out what information is relevant and what is really just rubbish.
As a brand, one of your core focus areas is to engage with your market. But how do you do that if they are filtering out, or simply ignoring, all your communication?
Using infographics to create something that is visually compelling, the chance of not only capturing your market’s attention, but actively engaging them, is a lot higher.
3. TMI! Information overload
There is just so much information out there, and even more being produced every second, which is why a lot of people tend to feel quite overwhelmed and experience an information overload. We are constantly receiving, analyzing, sharing and creating new information, whether it be on a desktop computer, or on our smartphones or tablets.
Because there is just so much information out there you need to find a way to stick out. Infographics are great for this. Although they are communicating what can often be perceived as quite boring data, the visualisation makes them engaging and a lot more exciting that if the same data was to be represented in a traditional format.
4. Understanding made easy
It’s true what they say. A picture speaks a thousand words, so it’s a wonder why we didn’t start using pictures to represent our research and data before.
It’s proven that as humans, our ability to interpret visual information is far greater and quicker than that of written words. By using visualisations, infographics allow you get across and often explain quite complex information is a very simple and easy to understand way.
Even if the information you are communicating isn’t that complex, using visualizations makes that information a lot more interesting and therefore engaging for the audience.
Short term memory. It’s a problem. I’m not sure about you but I often read something and then 5 minutes later someone can ask me what I was reading and for the life of me I have no idea. I’m sure I’m not alone. The fact is that the retention rate of information we read is pretty low.
By using imagery to communicate your message the likelihood of people remembering the data, and your message, is a lot higher.
5. People love to share
As we’ve seen with the instant success of Pinterest, people love sharing visual content. The more visual, exciting, interesting and different you make your information, the more people want to share it with others.
Again it’s been proven that if people have a choice between something that is visually stimulating and easy to read they are going to choose that over a craftily written article or traditional pie chart.
And so true to form, here is a little infographic just to sum up everything I just said, so that in five minutes time the chances of you remembering it, sharing it and recalling it are a lot higher.