Infographics are used a lot these days, by both marketers and the media. In case you’ve been living under a rock and don’t know what an infographic is, it’s essentially a visual aide that helps tell a story by presenting relevant data. Infographics often contain drawings, charts, and diagrams to showcase stats and information on a certain topic. They have been proven to help boost web traffic.
According to Forbes, humans tend to absorb information faster via visual mediums, and the average amount of time people can focus on something is usually pretty short. In an era when information can be accessed easily via mobile, anytime and anywhere, the thing that matters most to brands and publishers today is holding the audience’s attention. Infographics are a good way to do it.
Denny Santoso, Indonesia-based founder of fitness media portal DuniaFitnes and online marketing platform DigitalMarketer.id, tells Content Collision that when building infographics for your blog, the first thing you need to consider is how to draw up your customer persona. Designers need to understand the problems their target audience is facing each day, and therefore, what kind of information they really need to know.
Using marketing lingo, Santoso says infographics are seen by most marketers as “top-of-funnel” tools. This means their main purpose is to raise the audience’s awareness of the problem they face, and offer a solution that can be easily understood through simple images.
In Indonesia, Santoso says the local market tends to prefer consuming information visually. For this reason, he recommends incorporating infographics into your brand’s marketing strategy. He says, “Marketers should aim to design infographics that give deep insights, instead of just presenting basic information,” adding that infographics are also great for educating those who are less familiar with a topic.
There are several online tools out there that can help you create infographics, even if you have zero design experience. Some of them provide free templates and themes, while others require the user to splurge for a premium subscription. In no particular order, here are four online tools that can be helpful in making your first infographic. They’re particularly useful if you’re not a designer.
Easel.ly is a great web app for people who are just entering the realm of infographics for the first time. Most of its features are free, and the easy-to-use stock templates make the app’s name end up ringing true. Easel.ly is also good for people who want feedback from a community of other users, as they can share what they’ve created with others on the platform.
The only problem with Easel.ly is that users may find it to be short on some objects for dragging and dropping into the template. In this case, users may need to upload their own images.
Visually is a more expensive infographics service. Unlike most online tools that can be used on a freemium basis, Visually accepts requests from users, analyzes what they need, and then places the user’s ticket with a graphic designer who is most compatible with the project. The service is top-notch, and brands can take comfort in knowing that their image will be made by a true professional.
The overwhelming downside of Visually is the price, however, which begins at a whopping US$3,000 for infographics. However, for brands that want top-of-the-line images that have potential to go viral, and money is not an object, Visually could be just what the doctor ordered. Visually also offers other services such as product marketing, social media services, public relations, and media distribution. The user spares no expense.
In general, it’s normal for people to make mistakes when inputting data, especially when trying to generate charts and stats. For some tools, wrong data could spell disaster, and force users have to start a project all over again from the beginning. If you intend to work with a lot of data and numbers that need to be converted into charts, Visme is a good choice.
With dynamic chart features that automatically change when you change the data fields, you can easily avoid a mess in the later stages of your project. Visme also has a lot of beautiful templates, but most of them are only available to premium subscribers. Paying users will know where the extra money went, however, when they can enjoy the entire range of options Visme has to offer.
For users who want to create infographics without spending a single dime, Canva is likely the best option. This app provides an expansive libraries of images and widgets for you to play around with, and the neatly designed tools make the program simple and intuitive.
Canva is quite satisfying to use, but when compared to Visme, it’s perhaps not as user-friendly for newbies because it doesn’t offer the same automatic chart generation features. With Canva, users often must create their own charts first, then import them into the template.