There are lots of free infographic maker tool out there where you simply plug in your data and they turn out some sort of visualization. If you need to create an infographic quickly and your KPI is simply “deliver infographic” and no one cares about the quality, then these tools are great. However, if your infographic is part of a marketing strategy that is measured by the prospect engagement and lead gen, then a plug and play infographic tool isn’t going to cut it.
In my opinion, nothing worth doing is that easy. So, if your task is with creating a quality infographic that people are drawn to and that actually support your marketing objectives, then here are 8 steps to follow:
8 Best Way to Make Attractive Infographics
1. Set an Objective
Don’t do anything in marketing without an objective. At TopLine, I believe in “content with a purpose” which means every piece of content is produced with a clear purpose in mind.
Is that purpose to:
- Drive visits to your website?
- Generate followed links that support your SEO strategy?
- To make a story more appealing to journalists?
- Maybe you’re doing the infographic to simplify a complex concept that your sales team finds they have to explain repeatedly?
Whatever it is, your purpose should guide you throughout the creation phase. Once you have your purpose, think about how you’re going to distribute the infographics. As the distribution strategy will definitely inform the content and the design.
2. Map Your Data
Start by looking at all the data sources available to you:
- Does your company have its own data?
- What publicly available data can you use?
- How has the data been used before?
- Will you need commission research?
- How might the data be of interest to the target audience?
- Why would they care about it?
- What benefit does it bring them?
- Do you need to use all the data?
Interrogate your data until you genuinely understand it. Have a brainstorm with your team, discuss the data in detail and make sure you’ve got your head around it.
3. Figure Out What Your Audience Wants
This isn’t the infographic issue. It’s a wider marketing issue. Your marketing strategy should be built around an understanding of what your target customer wants. And of course, this needs to be tied back to your business objective which is a tricky task.
Once you’ve chosen your wider subject and you know your potential sources of data, refine your hook to make sure you’re creating an infographic that’s going to appeal to the market.
- Speak to people in your target audience and get their opinions/feedback.
- Look at tools like BuzzSumo and Google Trends to see what is trending – what are the most shared topics on a subject?
- Use a keyword research tool to identify what people are searching for around the subject.
Then tie this back to your purpose – how do you match the data you have with what the audience wants and still achieve your purpose? It’s not an easy task, but it’s worth doing thoroughly if you want your infographic to be successful.
4. Tell a Story
An infographic isn’t simply a place to vomit out all the data you have. You need to establish what the story is that your data tells and what the point is that you are trying to make with that story. A list of facts and states isn’t interesting. You need to have a story or a purpose behind it.
5. Find a Visual Metaphor
Take something from the real world that can be used to visualize the data you have and create a visual metaphor. That way people will instantly recognize, understand and remember it. For example, if your data is about school results, make it a report card or a blackboard.
If your data is about gambling, use a pack of cards or a roulette table or a slot machine. The opportunities are endless and you can carry the metaphor throughout the infographic. For example The periodic table of SEO success factors by search engine land. The race to economic growth by Grant Thornton:
6. Create Your Design Brief
It’s not your designer’s job to come up with the concept and understand how to visualize your data. You need to work with the designer to develop a brief that will result in the most creative output.
I recommend sitting down with your designer and explaining to him or her what you are trying to achieve with the infographic; working on metaphors together and honing and organizing the content you need to display.
7. Design Your Infographic
Infographics templates are boring. I recommend working with a creative designer who understands how to use design to communicate. The designer won’t just summarise your data on a JPEG and call it an infographic – she’ll use visuals instead of words; graphs or icons instead of numbers.
She knows that someone should be able to skim through the image and get the gist without actually having to read it in detail.
8. Promote Your Hard Work
Once your infographic is ready, it’s time to start promoting it. This should be relatively easy as you would have considered distribution right at the start.
Don’t Make these Mistakes While Making Your Infographics:
1. Making it too complicated
Infographics are about simplifying complex data into an easily digestible format. So if the reader has to really think to be able to understand it, then they’re going to most likely abandon it.
2. Making it too Generic
Infographics about broad subjects aren’t going to be of interest to your target audience. And even if they are, then you will already have loads of competition.
3. Giving the raw data to a designer and asking them to turn it into an infographic
That’s not fair. The designer needs you to interpret the data and brief them on what’s important.
4. Over-Stretching the Metaphor
Metaphors are great but they only work so far – your data cannot perfectly be explained as a recipe or a map – to keep the metaphors high level.
So these are the tips to create attractive infographics. Infographics help your audience to grab knowledge on any particular topic in less time. Now you know how to make a proper infographic. Without using any Infographic maker tool, you can also use these tips to make the awesome infographic.