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Telling Your Story Through Infographics

Has your organization thought about using infographics to visualize your story?  Infographics,  or information graphics, definitely get attention and can be a great way of graphically presenting information.

When done right, infographics engage your audience and offer up fun, quick, visually appealing bites of information. Through effective images, graphs or charts, they can help viewers understand data or key messages you want to convey. And those that are well organized allow for rapid scanning so that viewers can focus on what  interests them the most.

When can you use infographics? 

Here are three ideas to get you thinking:

  1. Visualize data – about projects, programs, fundraising (e.g., number of volunteers involved; the number of trees they planted or boxes of food they packed; number of families served; amount of funds raising, etc.)
  2. Illustrate survey highlights – here’s an example of how you can display the results of a survey - our infographic from  our Membership Renewal Survey (click to enlarge).
  3. Graphically represent your organization’s history or a specific program or project.  

Infographics as an SEO Tool:

Not only can an infographic help tell your data story but they can also increase traffic to your organization’s website. As the search engine marketing folks suggest, infographics can be great “link bait.” Not only does the infographic draw attention to your website or your blog, but the image may also be re-posted by other bloggers further amortizing your initial SEO efforts. As a Soshable post by JD Rucker suggests, “Infographics have emerged in the last 3 years as the most valid form of link-bait. When website owners see an infographic they like that fits in with their niche, they will often look for and find the embed code on the page, copy, and post it on their site. It is within the embed code that the real “juice” of infographics happen.”

Cautions and considerations

As with all visuals, there are always going to be “the Good; the Bad; [and] the Ugly” when it comes to infographics – as Karen Zapp explained in a blog post a while back. in the post, she offers some tips on how infographics can miss their mark through poor execution (hard to read, confusing, etc.) or ill-conceived objectives or audience targeting.  Zapp reminds us that “Infographics have their place …don’t risk annoying your donors, members, advocates and other supporters by churning out a poorly designed graphic that can’t be easily read or understood. That means the fundamentals of clear, compelling, relevant and personalized communication still apply– even to infographics.”

More ideas and resources to get you started

If you’re just starting to think about creating or commissioning an infographic for your organization, here are some additional resources:

  • Make Your Own Infographic – Wild Apricot blog post by Rebecca Leaman: offers examples for inspiration as well as additional resources to help figure out what information you want to communicate, which data points to select, and how to present the numbers.
  • Data Visualization and Infographics: Using Data to Tell Your Story – Guest post by Amadie Hart on Idealware: offers a list of Data Visualization and Infographic Creation tools.
  • Infographic of Infographics - this infographic (shown above) by Ivan Cash, new media artist and designer - offers "a look at some of the visual devices, informational elements, and general trends found in the modern day infographic."

Has your organization created any infographics?  We'd love to hear about them in the comments below.


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Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot]Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot]
Posted by Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot]
Published Monday, 15 October 2012 at 8:34 AM
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Comments

  • Rufus L. ColeRufus L. Cole

    Rufus L. Cole said:

    our organization has not created an infographic on its blog. Besides, as a startup organization we don't have the capacity of doing so. A help is needed.
    Tuesday, 16 October 2012 at 9:32 AM
  • LoriLori

    Lori said:

    Rufus: I realize that creating infographics might seem like a daunting task for the beginner. But if you haven't already, check out the post I noted above - Make Your Own Infographic - for some tips. Perhaps you might want to consider using some of your visuals (on your website) and creating an infographic if/when you develop your annual report - as VolunteerMatch did - here's a link: http://blogs.volunteermatch.org/engagingvolunteers/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/volunteermatch_2011annualreport_infograph.jpg
    Tuesday, 16 October 2012 at 10:16 AM
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