In short, an infographic is any visual representation of information. These large, creative images (see below for an example) can be found in a variety of places around the web, like on blogs, through some social networks like Pinterest, and on bookmarking sites like StumbleUpon. For the purposes of Internet Marketing, an infographic is normally used to present a large amount or complicated data in an appealing and engaging way. And that’s the key to your business getting the most out of this kind of content—engagement with your target audience. The assumption always seems to be that web users are impatient—they won’t bother with a site if it doesn’t load after a few seconds, and they won’t take the time to read every word on a text-rich web page. To market in this environment, where users want information in (faster than) an instant, visual content like infographics just might be a way to slow people down and get your message across effectively.
Just like any other visual-based piece of content, the marketing value of infographics lies in their portability, opportunities for sharing via social networks, and linking back to your business’s web site.
Portability: Once designed and completed, an infographic can be easily uploaded to an aggregator, repurposed in a presentation, highlighted in an email promotion, or discussed in an article, blog post, press release, or social media post.
Sharing: Your business’s online presence, reach, and credibility can all receive a substantial boost when users share your visual content. Because of their relatively small size and wide range of applications, infographics make for an inexpensive chance for your business’s content to “go viral.”
Backlinking: Just because any text content within an infographic can’t be crawled or indexed by a search engine doesn’t mean that these images don’t have distinct SEO advantages. Anyone that shares and/or publishes an infographic somewhere else typically links back to your business’s website; this link bait results in greater traffic and a higher search ranking.
It’s easy to see the benefits that can come not only from infographics, but from the integration of any visual content into your business’s digital marketing plan. The key is that the content has to be well designed. The best images are appealing and easy to understand, as well as informative and engaging. They can show your business’s expertise on a particular subject as well as increase your reach and web traffic. Finally, infographics are easily repurposed, shared by users, and serve as effective link bait for SEO purposes. For a business owner, it seems a picture can be worth much more than a thousand words.