Should asset managers and Registered Investment Advisors use infographics to ell your story?t

Would I write a 600-word blog post if the answer was “No”?

The Emotional Power of Infographics

“Infographics have an emotional power because they can show you an idea — or a relationship, or how something works — very quickly, said Andrea Ovans in the Harvard Business Review (HBR).

The best infographics are clear, easy to digest, and eye-catching, and can be placed on you website, in your pitch book, and/or in blog posts as part of your marketing campaigns. 

Infographics are not new. “Data visualization has been used as a shorthand in newspapers, magazines, and textbooks since the 19th century, if not earlier,” according to Fast Company. “In the Internet age, infographics are more useful than ever.”

An infographic is a data rich visualization of a story or idea; a tool to inform and educate; and a way to build brand awareness and inbound links at substantially less cost than traditional ads or pay per click advertising.

Why Else Use Infographics?

High Readership. High quality infographics are 30 times more likely to be read than plain text articles.

More Insight. Infographics reveal unexpected patterns in fresh, creative ways – Gareth Cook, Best Infographics 2014.

Instant Revelations. A great infographic is an instant revelation. It can compress time and space – Andrea Ovans, HBR

Pursuasive Surprises. A persuasive infographic surprises the viewer. It moves them in some way and makes them want to keep looking at it or show it to other people – HBR

Digestible BitesInfographics have quickly become one of the most popular ways to digest information easily and efficiently. 

Too Much Information?

Infographics simplify. “Their popularity now has to do with the fact that we’re being bombarded by media and data, and there are so many different ways of addressing, analyzing, and serving that data,” said Steven Heller and Rick Landers in their book “Infographic Designers Sketchbook.” 

“So often, this excessive information is conveyed sloppily, thoughtlessly, without enough attention to the reader’s experience, said Heller. “That’s what makes it so important to understand how deliberate infographic designers are about their process: many graphics look deceptively simple, but great visualizations aren’t whipped up in an instant; they’re planned impeccably.”

Another way to reduce potential design clutter is to include a URL at the bottom of your infographic that links to your sources.

The Best Infographics?

“The best infographics have a clear focus,” said Heller.

“The designer has gone in and removed all the extraneous details so you see just what you need to understand the message behind it. And yet the best ones also have a kind of openness – the person who’s done it is transparent about what data they’re using. That can be tricky because you need to give people a sense of all the data that’s out there, and enough context, without overwhelming them.

“In the best cases,” Heller said, “Viewers feel that they are the ones stepping in and making the connection because they can see the bigger pattern naturally emerging from what you’re showing them.”

Sure, you can create your own infographic with PowerPoint – if you have the time and interest in research, organization, and design. Or you could use a professional marketing agency and/or designer if your budget allows.