Your business is doing well and the company is now even developing and using its own data and information. You want to share your expertise with the world, but aren’t sure how.
Knowledge sharing can be an effective way to get new customers or clients, and to attract top employees, those who want to work at companies that are known to be thought leaders and innovators. Infographics are a powerful tool for companies looking to make a mark through knowledge sharing.
Infographics have become an incredibly popular way to display dense information and help people learn lessons. Instead of a stuffy report, an infographic is a visual display that often breaks complex ideas into manageable pieces and facts. Often referring to pop culture or creative visual references, infographics can be an exciting and engaging way to share your expertise with other business owners and to connect with consumers among the general public.
At Wasp Barcode we’ve placed a priority on helping our clients learn more about business management and making better business decisions. One of the ways we do that is by conducting surveys and creating our own reports and infographics that will be helpful to small and medium-sized (and even large) businesses. We produce two annual reports: the State of Small Business Report and the Small Business Report – Accounting. The reports help us learn more about our customers and their needs, and we publish the results to help our customers learn more about the business environment in general.
In addition to the reports, we always launch infographics and have found them to be a useful way to engage the public. We want to share some of the things we’ve learned about creating and effectively launching an infographic to get the maximum value for your company.
Creating the Infographic: What Information Can You Share?
The first step in launching an infographic is deciding what information you have to share and how to frame or present it. This means thinking about the data your company uses or collects, ideally information that isn’t broadly available to the public, and then thinking about how this information can be usefully shared with others. We aren’t talking about company secrets, rather research or information that could be useful or interesting to others.
At Wasp Barcode, we work with a lot of small and medium-sized businesses across almost every industry and offer a wide array of services, from asset and inventory management to time and attendance and checkout technology. As a result, we seek to understand the small businesses environment and its needs. We use this knowledge to help improve our products and services, and we share the general information that we gather to help others. Since our products can be particularly useful for accounting, we also survey accounting needs and have found that to be another resource we can share with the community at large.
What industry are you in? What unique information can you share with customers and other business leaders? Don’t just think useful, think fun and entertaining as well. Funny or fascinating infographics work great to raise brand awareness among the general public. Try to think about what information you have that the general public may find useful or interesting and entertaining.
Designing the Infographic: What’s the Best Way to Display Your Information?
One of the most important areas of an effective infographic is the design–this is a visual medium after all. You don’t want to waste your good information on a bad design and this is often a job that requires outside help depending on the size and makeup of your company.
If you have gifted in-house graphic designers, then by all means use their talents to design your infographics, but if you don’t, it is worth it to hire a freelance designer. Luckily, there are an increasing number of designers who specialize in infographic design and can help you realize your infographic vision at a reasonable cost.
While working with a good designer is important in getting your design right, there are still things to consider about the visualization. Do you want it to be funny? Would you like it to be traditional or more modern? How big? What kinds of graphs or images do you want to use? What order makes the most sense for presenting your information?
The more you know about what you want, the easier it will be to get someone to create it.
Launching the Infographic: How Do You Get Your Information Out to the World?
Arguably the most important part of creating your infographic is getting it out to the world. Often an infographic is launched as part of a broader report release. For example, we release infographics with our two annual reports and we use the infographics to generate interest in the reports. Often the infographic is the easiest way to introduce the material to people, and then once they’ve had a taste they want more.
Now, in practical terms, the launch of an infographic should be through all the usual channels: your website and blog, Facebook page, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. Use social media and the Web to share your message, but don’t forget the value of more traditional media outreach as well.
News companies are constantly looking for engaging content, and the popularity of infographics makes them something many companies want. If you get your infographic into the right hands, it can lead to articles about your research (and maybe your company), and this will be the best way for you to connect with new potential customers.
Infographics: Long-term Value
The launch of the infographic isn’t the end. The beauty of infographics is the long-term value they provide. From SEO to marketing and public relations, companies often continue to reap benefits from their infographics long after launch.
Create a place on your company website and/or blog for the infographic to live, slowly accruing greater and greater SEO value as companies and websites link to your interesting infographic. Send it to prospective clients or customers to show your expertise. News organizations that are looking for content may find the infographic long after its release and seek to use it.
When you aren’t meeting your consumers where they are, you might not be meeting them at all. Today’s Internet-savvy media consumers love infographics and they can’t seem to get enough of them, so mine your mind and find some information you can share.