Infographics: The Eye Candy of Content Strategy

I’m a word nerd from way back, but I will be the first to admit that there are plenty of times that a great image kicks the stuffing out of a great hunk of well-crafted prose.

Why? In my estimation, there are three reasons.

Simplicity.

Case in point: Much as people like to hate on Ikea’s directions, you have to admit, they’re easy to follow. Why? They’re just pictures. (And pictures that even my 7-year-old can ably follow.) Compare that to the lengthy, multi-language user manuals that often accompany other DIY projects, and it’s a clear win. Who the heck really knows what a “flat-top flange” is, anyway?

Engagement.

We all know the Web rule that people don’t read, they skim. And skip. And glance. That makes it hard for prose — even elegant, spit-shined prose — to grab people and hold their interest if it’s longer than a few lines. Compare that to a compelling infographic. A clever, well-presented image can hold your attention in a way that no block of text can.

Data wrangling.

Sure, there are charts. And bullet points. And lots of other textual ways to present information. But when you’re trying to convey a boatload of ideas in a simple way, nothing beats an infographic. Here’s one that has always sucked me in:

Image

It’s by Richard Ingram, an innovative, UK-based content strategist who here has very adeptly summarized the various skills, talents, and experience sets that combine to make up the field of “content strategy.” I love this infographic so much that I have it in poster form on my wall.

Want to know more about great infographics? Check out these resources:

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