Create Infographics People Will Want to Share
Over the last 5 years, the popularity of infographics in marketing has continued to climb. We just can’t resist because….
Infographics are ENGAGING!
According to an article on Venngage, a little over 40 percent of marketers said in a report that infographics and other original graphics were the most engaging:
Infographics provide a ridiculously easy and fast way to share information. They can be entertaining, informative and visually stimulating. Most of all, people like sharing them because they are a simple way to digest meaty information.
What is an Infographic?
Put together the words “information” and “graphic”, and you have information conveyed in visual form. It is also commonly understood that infographics most often contain multiple, related facts about a single topic.
When Pinterest first burst on the scene, the big viral share incentive used to be pictorially witty or wise quotes, but these have become over-used. If you really want people to share your information, present it as a well-thought-out infographic.
The format alone virtually guarantees viral sharing provided you follow these steps to make sure your infographic doesn’t disappoint.
Be Timely and Relevant
What’s on people’s minds, right at this moment? That’s the question to ask yourself when sitting down to create an infographic.
For example, this infographic from the Military Health System and the Defense Health Agency promoting safety tips during the 2016 Rio Olympics against the Zika virus:
Create Evergreen Infographics
If you can’t be timely, be relevant – and what better way to ensure this than to make sure your infographic is always highly relevant to your core niche members.
For example, if your target customers are all young mothers, an infographic entitled “10 Signs of Poisoning Every Parent Should Know” is far more likely to be viewed than one entitled “15 Essential Engine Parts for your John Doe Tractor”!
An evergreen topic is information that:
- Your intended audience will always need
- Doesn’t change over time
- Deliver what you promise
The quickest way to ensure your infographic is not shared consists of presenting something other than what your title promises.
A case in point: In response to a search on “children signs of poisoning”, this ad…
…led to a jargon-and-science-heavy site dealing with a condition known as Primary Immunodeficiency. It had nothing to do with poisoning symptoms in children at all!
The young mother scrambling urgently to find out if her child could be suffering from poisoning is likely to feel enraged and tricked upon clicking the ad and being taken to a scholarly general article on the human immune system.
Use Infographics to Share Complex Information Instantly
A picture is not just worth a thousand words – it can eliminate the need for them altogether.
Infographics are especially useful for sharing figures, percentages, graphs, pie charts and other data of the sort that often seem to make heavy reading when presented in text paragraphs.
Seeing something compared side-by-side gives a much better grasp of the topic than data conveyed by mere figures.
People love comparisons. In fact, a comparison between A and B is often what they are actually searching for.
Titles containing the “A vs. B” formula – such as “Google+ vs. Facebook” in the following example – are irresistible to those searching for information on either the A or B in your title.
Keep It “Above the Fold”
One of the biggest failings seen in infographic information sharing – data that disappears off screen, so that one has to scroll down to find it.
The real problem with this: The reader instantly loses the easy overview that infographics should deliver. It’s no longer a case of “information at a glance”, and that can be disappointing.
Plus having to scroll backwards and forwards, trying to compare data, can be irritating.
Make your pictures and text smaller, so that all your data fits onscreen whenever possible.
Make Your Infographic Unique
Try to share information that no one else has yet thought of or explored, rather than creating your own version of a Google+/Facebook comparison.
Just make sure it’s highly relevant to your target viewers. Topics that are on everyone’s mind make wonderful infographic fodder – just as long as you give them your own new “twist”.
If you make a “True or False” infographic, make sure you include both true and false examples.
If your examples are all true or all false, this seems to narrow the entertainment factor and people tend to lose interest before finishing your infographic. And if you were planning on springing the exception to your rule at the end of your infographic, don’t try to be clever – people may bale on you before your big finale.
Besides, it’s the contrast element that people like the most.
Vary the Type of Infographic You Create
Suit your delivery method to your audience. Are they big on entertainment? Try a “True or false” format.
Do they need to sort out confusing facts? Run a comparison between their two biggest interests.
Have they got a question? Answer it.
Do you need to quickly educate your target customer? Try a “Timeline” format.
Want to get the most shares and increase your audience? Pick a topic that is trending or seasonally relevant: (E. g. “Ten Worst Valentine’s Day Presents Ever”).
Other Types of Infographics
- “Little known facts about…”
- “How to…” (e.g. set a formal dining room table; iron a man’s dress shirt)
- Process mind-map
- Single graphic chart with multiple elements (e.g. map)
- Mixed chart (with variable elements such as text, head shots, statistics, etc.)
The popularity of a topic will affect your infographic’s viral potential. For example, celebrities and humor always grab huge shares of general audiences.
For more specific audiences, you need to know their most pressing need, issue, interest or passion.
Share Your Infographic!
This doesn’t mean just one posting on social media as you sit back and wait for your infographic to go viral. Instead…
Share it specifically with influential people in your niche. Make sure it is highly relevant to their friend/audience base.
The best social network to promote on is Pinterest on specific “Infographics” boards. (Just search Boards with the keyword “infographics”.) Create your own dedicated boards like this example from visual marketing expert, Louise Myers:
Share it on infographic-friendly sharing sites. Those currently most popular include:
Share it regularly. This doesn’t mean bombarding your viewers. Just keep an eye and ear out for cues and opportunities to share it again. And after a few weeks is a decent interval for another general share.
Don’t forget to share it on your blog. Talk about why you created it, and what you learned: What was the most eye-opening fact, and what it means to you.
Most of all, what value it offers your readers!
10 More Quick Tips
1 – Make sure you include sharing buttons with your infographic – especially on your blog or website.
2 – Involve other contributors by asking them to add their data – and then allow them to co-release the infographic to their subscribers at the same time you do.
3 – Use your infographic to brand your business. Concentrate on speaking as the authority on your niche – not on driving people to sign up pages or links.
4 – Ask your audience to share your infographic! Remember that all-important call to action.
6 – Create infographics for mobile – and then promote them with a QR code. (Sites like Easel.ly even provide mobile theme templates.)
7 – Put your website URL as straight text – not as an anchor link. You want people to remember your site name this time, rather than click through.
8 – Tell your audience where they can get more infographics (your site or Pinterest boards).
9 – Include your share buttons at the end of your infographic instead of anchor links (you’re less likely to be penalized by Google).
10 – Track your infographics. You can:
- Set up Google Alerts
- Track through Facebook Insights and other social network tracking systems
- Track through social media managers like HootSuite
- Use paid ads or paid infographic sites that provide tracking software or apps
Creating great infographics is a learning process, so just start creating and improving your infographics as you go along. See which infographics get the best response, get feedback from your readers and keep on creating.
Featured image: Copyright: ‘https://www.123rf.com/profile_avian‘ / 123RF Stock Photo
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