Making the Case for Infographics in PR

Infographics are taking the Web by storm. Not the infographics pioneered by USA Today to make the news more exciting for people that don’t like to read, but rather the so-long-you-need-to-scroll and so-darn-good-you-have-to-read-and-want-to-share kind. Infographics are out of control – everyone is using them. That usually means they work great. Are infographics linkbait? Do they get shared a lot? Absolutely. So how can you use infographics as a weapon in your PR arsenal? Here are a few infographics I like with some suggestions for how you can use infographics to get your message out.

Brian Solis’ Conversation Prism

No list of PR-related infographics is complete without a reference to Brian Solis’ Conversation Prism (the graphic next to the first paragraph), so lets start there. You’ve probably seen this one a hundred times by now, but it’s worth mentioning because it illustrates the true power and viral nature of infographics (it was also a pioneering move when it came out – infographics weren’t as common as far as viral content goes). Oh, and this infographic makes money. Get yours here.

Public Relations Content Survey Results

What a great way to illustrate the results of a survey. Sure, you could package all your stats in a text-heavy white paper or a fancy-dancy PowerPoint preso, but why not just take the best stuff and make it pretty? Here’s a great example from WalkerSands Communications – they repackaged PR Newswire stats from a study:

A Process Is Better Illustrated With a Picture

You could tell people about your processes, or make them read a ton of content, or you could show them with a picture. People visualize things differently. Communicating visually ensures you deliver your message precisely how you intended. This is a great example of one from Pace Communications. I also really like the fact that Pace offers an embed code for the graphic on this site (making it easy for people to share the graphic).

Foursquare’s 2010 Check-In

Write and send a press release bragging about how much you’ve grown in a year, and you’re probably not going to get a lot of pick-up. Of course, if you’re Foursquare, they would probably write about you either way. I’ll bet Foursquare got more than twice the press with the following infographic than they would have with a press release. It helps to have some great stats to work with, but this infographic is amazing.

And don’t forget that making people laugh is part of what makes stuff spread online. My favorite stat on this chart is the “Wendy’s who checked-in at Wendy’s”. Brilliant.

Make Boring Stuff Exciting With Infographics

Global Internet traffic growth might not be too exciting to most of you, but this infographic from Mashable Infographics (designed by @nick_sigler) really jazzes things up. Think of the information you could communicate more effectively with infographics.


Is the Infographic the Cure for the Press Release?

When you see infographics like this, you really have to wonder – is the infographic the new way to get your message out? I’ll bet the deliverability and open rates would be much better on a graphic like this than a press release.

You know what I’d like to see? An infographic about the use of infographics in communications (if you create it, send it to me). All you really need to launch an infographic assault is an interesting idea, a bunch of stats and a talented (okay, very talented) graphic designer. That latter part will be your challenge. My guess is design determines 85% of the success of an infographic.

Want to read more about infographics? Check out these resources:

What do you think? Are infographics a fad? Are they effective communications tools? Have you seen other great infographics? Please share your thoughts and resources with other Journalistics readers.

 

About Jeremy Porter 214 Articles
Jeremy Porter has been passionate about the intersection of public relations and journalism since studying both Public Relations and Journalism at Utica College of Syracuse University in the late 90s. Porter launched Journalistics in 2009 to share his ideas and insights around both professions and how trends and developments in modern day marketing, communications, and technology impact those working in these fields. Porter also values the traditions and history of both professions and regularly shares his perspective in these areas - and related topics geared toward the next generation of journalism and public relations professionals.

9 Comments

  1. I love these–thanks for sharing Jeremy! I agree with your point– information is being consumed so quickly now that the visualization of data helps it to better reach its audience. Plus, I had just mentioned to someone on Twitter the idea of an infographic about infographics. Who knows, the world may implode if that were to ever be created 😉

  2. Tremendous — as we’ve come to expect from you.

    “A Process Is Better Illustrated With a Picture” is resonating with me. I have just the project in mind to apply it.

    Thanks!

  3. I have always been a fan of infographics as they are, in my mind at least, much easier and more pleasant to read and understand that text alone. Plus I am a visual learner, so this was a very easy case to make for me! If a picture is worth 1,000 words, I’d say infographics are worth at least 10,000.

    • That’s amusing. I’d like to see a real infographic on infographics – there has to be a huge upward trending line on the graph this year.

  4. Infographics are essential if your target audience includes young people who were raised on all things video and visual.

    This post is a fabulous reminder to PR people everywhere to incorporate graphics into things like press releases, an online media room, sharing on social media sites, pre-event publicity, post-event publicity, etc.

    Also, create a cool graphic and use it to accompany your pitch to a journalist. Enticing. Irresistible. (I’m a former newspaper editor.)

    • Thanks for the feedback Joan. Now if I could just figure out how to create infographics? I haven’t found a designer yet that was reliable for that type of work. I know there are some DIY tools coming out (like Visual.ly), but I haven’t gotten access yet. Let me know if you have ideas.

  5. Firstly thanking for this wonderful explanation about Info graphics. Explaining the data in a simple way with a picturized representation is a great idea through which the global audiences would understand easily. Social Networking sites have gained a huge impression around the globe. It has become a major information share and gain center not only for people but also for many of the business development companies.

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