Published on September 24th, 2013
Content marketing isn't just about blog articles and ebooks. There is another opportunity to showcase your design skills while educating your audience with relevant information.
The answer to your problem is an engaging infographic.
I'm not sure if you've noticed but people are searching for infographics like it's the most wanted kids toy at Christmas time.
With more than 17+ million searches since 2010, infographics have become a worldwide sensation. Also, 45% more web users will click on a link if it features an infographic.
Have you created one before? If you're not a designer it might not be as simple as you're hoping. There are more elements than just copying and pasting text onto a blank document. The process takes into consideration a variety of different elements that come together to educate your audience.
Before you create your next infographic, there are some elements you should include to ensure that your infographic is effectively engaging with your audience.
How to Create an Engaging Infographic Your Audience Will Want to Share
1. Striking a Balance Between Design & Data
Your infographic shouldn't just include data or statistics. Yes, knowing what percentage of people are clicking on banner ads and the percentage of CEO's that are engaging on social media can be important, but statistics can actually bog down your message.
Don't get me wrong, the numbers are important, but they can quickly lose the interest of your audience if there are too many.
Information and statistics should be presented in an organized, yet interesting way. There is nothing worse than stat after stat filling up every square inch of your infographic.
Remember to keep them accurate, colorful, and simple to follow. Think of the design of your infographic, like the design of your website. If you keep design in mind, your statistics won't be overbearing,
People love visuals. Instead of reading plain text in an ebook or blog, your audience is able to retain more information by reading your infographic. According to Unbounce, 99% of all sensory information is filtered out by the brain almost immediately. This means only 1% of information actually gets through to the brain. Infographics are in this 1%."
2. Content Should Educational, Not Promotional
What topic does your audience want to learn more about? First rule of thumb, choose a topic that your audience wants to know more about. For example the differences between inbound and outbound marketing or even on the importance of optimizing your website for mobile.
Those are both topics that you could use to educate your audience on the mobile optimization revolution and how a significant portion of your audience is know accessing your content or website on their mobile device.
The content shouldn't be all about you. It's about educating your target audience. Second rule of thumb don't make it promotional. That should not be your number one priority.
If you're creating an infographic that's focused on your company or business, you are creating an infographic for the wrong reason. You shouldn't be surprised to see a low number of share and views. Unfortunately, people don't want to hear all about you. It's like having that one friend who doesn't think about anything or anyone else other than themselves.
Your goal is to educate your target audience. If that's not your goal, you might want to re-evaluate why you want or should create an infographic.
3. Tell a Story
Use your information and data you've collected to tell a story. Don't put words on a paper in the hope that they will make sense to your audience, or that they will make the connection.
Just because it's an infographic, it doesn't mean that you cannot take the opportunity to tell a story. It's not just about visual content and data.
What do you want them to get from viewing your infographic? Tell a story to achieve that outcome. It's also about making them feel some sort of emotion. According to Cat Jones, Director of Product Innovation for Unruly Media, "Brands need to elicit a strong viewer response against at least one psychological trigger and multiple social motivations to achieve a high share rate."
Virality, SEO, location, and social all play a part in the reach and success of your infographic.
Virality is a big part of infographics. They just seem to spread like wildfire. However, you have to remember that the infographic is getting shared because the content is remarkable and relevant to their needs. Don't create an infographic just to create viral content, often times that will backfire. And it will be a total flop.
Just like every other piece of content your creating it has to be optimized for SEO. You want it to be indexed by the search engines. It all might come down to where it's placed on your site. Consider placing your infographic within a blog article and on its own landing page. Make it easy for people to access and find. Ensure that the title and keywords are in line with the search terms your audience uses.
Shareability is all about using social media to spread your reach. The day that your infographic is launched, don't be afraid to make a big deal about it. Send out an email with a link to the blog article or landing page. Publish your blog article. And blast the link and a teaser image of it across a variety of social media platforms. Get the word out there.