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6 Awesome Reasons to Create Visual Content for Your Website or Blog

6 Awesome Reasons to Create Visual Content for Your Website or Blog
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Big Data has been a theme for 2013, and it poses the threatening question of how one can possibly interpret all the data that is available to take in.

As consumers of data, we’re constantly deciding whether to “bookmark” a particularly interesting file, or make an entry in Evernote to come back to read it later. There is so much data being generated every single minute on the Internet that it becomes increasingly time-consuming to make decisions such as: Should I read it now? Should I make a note of it in my Moleskin notepad? Should I email the link to myself?

In short, we spend more time sorting through, curating and organizing data that already exists. In doing so, we create more data about data!

Similarly, as a “provider” of information, whether you’re a recruiter looking for perfect candidates for a job, a designer showcasing your skills all in one place, or an educator speaking about a challenging topic, you too face a challenge: How do I gather the massive amount of data at my disposal in a clear, compelling format for my reader swithout losing the point?

Enter Visual Content Marketing! Realizing this dilemma, some smarty-pants on the Net came up with a unique blend of pictures and raw data—infographics.

What Are Infographics?

Infographics are visual presentations of information that compress complex ideas and present it to the viewers in a digestible format. They let you communicate hard to grasp data quickly and clearly.

An infographic could be a supplementary image for your blog post or web page, or it could be a stand-alone piece of information with little supporting text. That means you can base a whole blog post on an infographic.

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A study analyzed by Jakob Nielson concludes some interesting findings. For starters, people will spend more time on your page if you cram in more words; however they only spend 4.4 seconds for each additional 100 words. More importantly, people will spend time understanding the layout and looking at the images on your page, so they realistically end up reading only 20% of text.

Since we are discussing infographics, it seemed fitting that we included this one: An infographic to explain an infographic.

What is an infographic

    Click to expand. (Source)

    Why Use Infographics?

    A study conducted by Wharton School of Business found that 50% of the audience was persuaded by a purely verbal presentation, whereas 67% were persuaded by a verbal presentation that had accompanying visuals.

    Another study found that the color visuals of infographics increase the willingness to read by a whopping 80%.

    Here are 6 reasons infographics are so effective for content marketing:

    1. Humans are wired to process visual content. Think about it—would road signs be as effective if they were presented in purely text form? Most people wouldn’t even get a chance to read them while driving!

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    2. Humans are tired of the information overload. According to Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, we are bombarded with approximately 2 million bits of information every second, whereas we can only process 134 bits per second. We simply can’t process the excess input.

    3. Humans can recall visual content quicker than any other form. We’ll remember 80% of what we saw and did, 20% of what we read and 10% of what we heard.

    4. Adding carefully crafted visuals make what we’re reading more believable.

    5. Since infographics are easy to digest, attractive and fun, more people are keen to share them with others. That means more people being engaged with your content! (Speaking of fun, this infographic wins hand-down, don’t you think?)

    6. The first step in converting prospects into long-term visitors and paid clients is to hold their attention. Infographics are pretty engaging by themselves and make this easier to achieve.

    If you have a website or a blog, you can no longer settle with plain, boring text. For starters, no one “reads” text online. Most people will skim your page without actually using the information on the page. But with infographics, you have a neat little method to make them stay longer and want more.

    How to Use Infographics

    Researchers Barbara M. Miller and Brooke Barnett said:

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    On their own, text and graphics are both useful yet imperfect methods for communication. Written language allows an almost infinite number of word combinations that allow deep analysis of concepts but relies heavily on the reader’s ability to process that information. Graphics may be easier for the reader to understand but are less effective in communication of abstract and complicated concepts…This study showed that for the presentation of scientific information, combining text and graphics allows communicators to take advantage of each medium’s strengths and diminish each medium’s weaknesses. (p. 63, “Understanding of Health Risks Aided by Graphics with Text”)

    This means it’s best to use an infographic along with a supporting piece of text. This allows an infographic to become instructional in a compelling and attractive manner. For example, on your website or blog you can embed colorful, attractive infographics that can act as a recruiting tool, present survey data, explain how things work, and compare concepts.

    From superheroes to complicated ideas, infographics have found their place everywhere. Check out some of the most effective ones below:

    How to be a Superhero: An Illustrated Guide

      Click to expand. Source: Zia Somjee

      How Would You Like Your Graphic Design

        Click to expand. Source: Cool Infographics

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        Or, this interactive one about 13 reasons your brain craves infographics!

        How to Create Awesome Infographics in Less than an Hour

        Okay, you’re convinced about the effectiveness of visual content online. Being an organization or a small business, you want to give this a proper go. The next natural question that arises is: How do I create an awesome-looking infographic for my website?

        The most obvious way for some people is to hire a freelance designer. But depending on whom you hire, you can end up paying hundreds or thousands of dollars and not get what you want in the end.

        If you’re more of a DIY type and like to learn and implement new skills for life without spending any money, EWC Presenter is your go-to infographic maker. All you have to do is create a free account at www.ewcpresenter.com and choose Infographics—you can create presentations, banner ads, product demos and infographics.

        How to Create Awesome Infographics in Less than an Hour

          There is no additional software needed to be installed as the app is cloud-based and works on HTML5. Plus the themes are beautiful!

          The best part of using this app is it saves you hundreds to thousands of dollars and brings several features—such as multi-lingual options, being search-engine friendly and over 600 Google fonts—all to one place.

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          Easy Web Content Presenter

            Check out the app for free and share your thoughts below!

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            Last Updated on July 21, 2021

            The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

            The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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            No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

            Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

            Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

            A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

            Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

            In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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            From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

            A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

            For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

            This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

            The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

            That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

            Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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            The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

            Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

            But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

            The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

            The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

            A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

            For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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            But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

            If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

            For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

            These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

            For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

            How to Make a Reminder Works for You

            Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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            Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

            Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

            My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

            Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

            I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

            More on Building Habits

            Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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            Reference

            [1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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