Guide to Infographics: How to design an infographic
Table of Contents
What is an Infographic?
There’s so much of visual-content out there that data is quickly becoming a differentiator! Let’s face it. When you have the numbers, you would rather flaunt those than rely on long-sentences and complex technical diagrams.
But what is the best way of showcasing both critical data and great-looking visuals?
That’s where the world of Infographics comes in!
Simply put, an infographic or information graph is a “visual representation of information or data”. They are a collection of charts, images, and minimal content to compellingly explain a topic that may be difficult to understand.
Eye-popping color palettes, creative words, illustrated characters, etc., when combined, can create the perfect infographic. More importantly, it can help you achieve your goal of being informative and engaging in a crisp and creative format.
Whether it be a step-by-step gadget manual or a study on one of the trending topics, an infographic can be the best-suited marketing collateral to represent your data in a way that pulls the customer closer to your brand.
Evolution of Infographics
With the explosion of digital marketing, there’s a good chance you already know what an infographic looks like. But did you know that it started as early as the stone age? Let’s look back at when it all began.
The evolution of Infographics dates to prehistoric cave paintings. If we look at the artwork of cave paintings all over the world – one thing that they have in common is a visual representation of the first storytellers. Like Yuval Norah, a noted historian said, “Humans think in stories, and we try to make sense of the world by telling stories.”
The artworks represent the tales of early human civilization, primitive maps of the alignment of stars, as well as the depiction of volcanic eruptions. These artworks serve as informative data for not only the primitive men and women of that era but also for the archaeologists and scientists to come.
Egyptian Hieroglyphics epitomize the phrase, “Images are universally understood.” They were used by Egyptians to document their religious practices, their lives, and their work.
Interestingly, the written language that was crafted by the ancient Egyptians had evolved to correlate sounds with symbols. And it is due to these hieroglyphics that even though it’s been a long time since the ancient Egyptian civilization has flourished, information about their culture and their practices has been deciphered and restored.
Cartography has remained an integral part of science for more than thousands of years.
Maps are considered the first infographics that were designed, created, and distributed by our earliest ancestors. Whether a primitive map that showed the openings in a cave, an ancient map of Babylon, or a 21st-century map of the planet, people have always found themselves visually expressing themselves to navigate the world.
Early Graphs & Charts
Looking back at the evolution of infographics, one thing that stands out is the fact that visualization of the data was limited when compared to today. It was because the data, itself, was limited. But all that changed with technological advancements leading to the emergence of big data and analytics, which in turn, made data regularly available in a streamlined manner.
However, pie charts and line graphs to bar graphs and histograms were already in use by the end of the 18th century. In fact, it was William Playfair’s, ‘Commercial and Political Atlas’ publication in 1786 that marked the use of the various forms of infographics.
America’s map of slavery distribution, based on the 1860 census, gave birth to the rise of political maps and diagrams. These maps have significantly impacted the making of public policies across the world.
Infographics of the 20th-century
The evolution of storytelling, through visual representations, has made one thing clear infographics have become a universal language of its own.
From the advancement of computer languages to the mass media boom, infographics have become even more essential than ever before to analyze large amounts of data and enhance decision-making abilities.
Today, as a B2C/B2B marketer, or a brand founder, you can’t ignore Infographics as a communication strategy. It can accelerate your path to creativity while providing your customers with aesthetically-pleasing reading material. Want to showcase why your product can solve pain points? Want to scream at the top of your lungs about your brand’s new launch? Look no further than the world of Infographics. If anything, history has taught us that it actually works!
Who are the torchbearers of Infographics?
Looking at the history of Infographics, it has evolved from being a purely marketing tool to a more sociable form of content that conveys critical or interesting information to the average person. Nowadays, the marketing world treats it as a top priority simply because the average customer is more accustomed to receiving information that way.
Wondering who are these people that use infographics? Well, look no further, we have curated a list just for you!
As a student, you will agree that learning with graphics and or visuals is more fun than reading pages and pages of a textbook. Using Infographics is a creative and fun way to not only explain a topic through homework or essays but also to offer an opportunity to experience enhanced learning for students.
This one comes as a no brainer. With the world getting smaller and competitive, the need for marketing strategists to make content attractive and engaging is essential. And that’s when infographics came to the forefront as they help retain the linkable website. By making the infographic useful and visually aesthetic, it keeps the audience engaged.
First impression is the last impression when you’re going job hunting. An infographic resume could be your golden ticket to get that dream job that creates a lasting impression and helps you stand out from the crowd. What makes an infographic resume special is that it offers an opportunity to intermingle thematic visuals with your job experience and other information.
Healthcare institutions like hospitals, clinics, etc. across the globe use infographics to communicate with their audience. These infographics are used to spread awareness, give information about the advanced medical technologies, provide tips for a healthy lifestyle, etc. by means of pamphlets, posters, and even through TV screens in the lobby areas of these institutions.
Have you ever wondered how the reporters filter so much content and deliver the news that is relevant and useful to us? Well, they use dynamic infographics to help them sort through. They use graphs, charts, pie charts, tables, etc. to effectively convey the news to the audience and make sure that relevant information is consumed first by highlighting it using a vast color palette.
Infographics have proven to be such a dynamic tool adapted by various industries across sectors to convey and represent information effectively and efficiently. It can make dry, boring information extremely interesting.
9 Popular types of Infographics
However, this is only possible if you know how to present it. This means, that if you’re new to designing, there is a good chance that you might feel lost about how to visualize your information effectively.
But fear not. We are here to guide you through finding the right type of infographics to present your information. Here are 9 types of Infographics that you can use depending on the kind of information you want to present:
Statistical Infographics or Data Visualization
The ideal form of infographics illustrates complex information and data through pie charts, charts, histograms, graphs, and or design.
- To make data, facts, and statistics more interesting to absorb
- To simply data-driven arguments and make it easy to understand
This is a fun format of infographics that entails creative visuals and graphics rather than a boring writing piece.
- To cut down excessive text
- To make an article a visual treat
- To give your infographic an opportunity to go viral
It is an ideal format for information that requires you to list down a series of steps, or content.
- To support a specific argument
- To provide a structure to your content
Want to showcase information and or data based on location? Map Infographics are an ideal match for presenting and sharing information and or data.
- To compare data based on regions
- To present location-centric information
Comparison or Versus Infographics
A format that compares two or more ideas, concepts, and or objects.
- To highlight specifications
- To highlight differences and similarities
Flowchart Infographics is majorly used to present content that has a flow or offers specified answers to questions that are frequently asked.
- To provide personalized answers
- To portray how various circumstances can offer a similar conclusion.
A form of infographics that finds a creative way to cover the full scope of infographic content through audience participation.
- To encourage audience engagement
- To attract audiences with creative, out-of-the-box visuals
This format can be used when you want to narrate a story or present information/data chronologically.
- To showcase how one thing leads to another
- To portray the changes a particular thing has gone through over time
- To simplify a long, complicated storyline
It is similar to Flowchart Infographics and can be used interchangeably. As the name suggests, it is used to represent the steps of a process.
- To break down a lengthy process into simplified, easy-to-understand steps
Now, that you know the most popular formats of infographics, go ahead and get started. Choose the one that fits your requirements as well as keeps your audience engaged and then dive straight in.
But wait. Hang on! Before you go any further, let me address another topic that might come in handy while you’re on your way to create a super fun, trendy infographic.
5 illustrations that will transform your ideas on Infographic Design
Having just the right format of infographics is only half the battle. Great content requires great graphics. Similarly, great infographics demand a great design that will complement it.
Bringing your creativity to this tool will further accentuate your infographic, making it aesthetically pleasing while grabbing the attention of your audience. To find the right balance between content and visual, you not only need creativity but also need the right design that will go with your creative idea.
Mentioned below are 5 design ideas that will leave your audiences stunned and wanting for more: