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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

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.

          Easy Web Content Presenter

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

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            1 Better Alternatives to New Year’s Resolutions to Reduce Your Stress 2 How Personal Finance Software Helps You Get More Out of Your Money 3 7 Steps For Making a New Year’s Resolution and Keeping It 4 How to Concentrate and Train Your Brain to Focus Better 5 How to Be Creative When You’ve Hit a Creative Block

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            Last Updated on January 2, 2019

            Better Alternatives to New Year’s Resolutions to Reduce Your Stress

            Better Alternatives to New Year’s Resolutions to Reduce Your Stress

            The end of the year is the time when everyone tries to give you advice on how to live healthier, look better, and earn more money.

            It’s understandable if you find yourself lost among all the tips and opinions. Sometimes you no longer know what you truly want to achieve next year – and what’s just imposed by society.

            To help you out, we’ve made this article about the things you should remove from your new year’s resolution list – instead of adding to it – to make your daily life more harmonious and peaceful.

            So just make sure you cross these off your New Year’s to-do list – your body, mind and soul will be thankful.

            1. Stop Buying Meaningless Gifts

            We all know the sense of obligation – when we have to buy a gift for an event or celebration that’s already tomorrow, but we still have no idea of what to give.

            Take these tips close to heart for all upcoming holidays, including birthdays, weddings, graduations, etc.:

            Stop focusing on the material objects

            Instead of focusing on what material object to give, think about the emotion you want to evoke[1] in the gift recipient, and then pick a symbolic gift that can support or represent that emotion. For example, you can gift coziness by presenting a “comfort set” with warm socks, tea, candles, etc. Or give motivation by presenting a beautiful planner or notebook.

            Plan gifts in advance

            We know this is easier said than done. But if you try to plan which gifts you’ll need in the upcoming months (try making a list three or four times a year), ideas will more likely come to mind and you’ll avoid that last-minute shopping. Not to mention, you’ll be able to keep an eye on sales to get the best prices.

            Suggest a better way

            If you’re tired of exchanging gifts for birthdays and holidays, initiate a different approach. For example, draw names among family members and agree that each one only buys a present to that one person they got. Alternatively, you can agree not to share gifts among adults, and only give presents to kids of the family. Or, ask friends to donate to charity instead of buying a gift for you.

            Go for common experiences instead of exchanging gifts

            You can agree (with your partner or the extended family) to go on a common trip, dinner or another activity, instead of spending money on gifts.

            Sometimes you’ll have to be the one who initiates breaking the rules that have been accepted in the family for years. But if you suspect that you’re not the only one in the group who’s tired of gift-hunting, you’ll surely find support for your suggestions.

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            2. Don’t Exaggerate with Diets and Fitness Resolutions

            It’s no secret that TV shows, article headlines, and ads (not to mention our healthy diet-obsessed friends) make us feel like we need to look better, slimmer and younger than we actually are. But going on yet another diet or starting a fitness plan with the wrong motivation rarely leads to great results.

            If you are like many people, you have probably signed up for an annual gym membership at least once in your life – only to drop it one month later.

            How do you balance a good resolution for a healthier life without pushing yourself into commitments that won’t last?

            Here’s what you can do:

            Set a healthier pattern

            For example, do meat-free Mondays or reduce meat consumption to three days per week (less saturated fat for you and better for the environment). Or choose to eat only healthy food at least three days a week or only on weekdays (e.g. make sure your meals contain vegetables, fruits, whole grains, dairy products, and protein). This way you’ll already have a healthier diet while still being able to treat yourself with a snack on weekends or parties.

            Get a fitness watch

            Fitness watches like Fitbit or MiBand are tiny accessories that will count your steps, calories burnt and will serve as an excellent motivator to move – or to take the stairs instead of the elevator.

            Find a physical activity that you enjoy

            Even if you are not that fond of doing sports, you can definitely find an activity that you’d do with pleasure. Think about what you’d like – from taking up Nordic walking to pilates or even exercising at home.

            Try intermittent fasting

            This is an alternating cycles of fasting and eating. For example, stop eating at 8 pm and restart not sooner than 12 hours later. This approach has been proven to have numerous health benefits, in addition to weight loss.

            Skip cabs or driving to work and opt for cycling or walking instead

            You’ll burn calories, breathe some fresh air, and save money – win-win!

            3. Put a Cap on Your Daily To-Do List

            In today’s busy world, planning your day in a stress-free way is actually an art in itself. It’s natural to want to be a loving parent, a diligent employee, an active member of the local community and probably several other individual roles.

            But playing all these roles requires energy and meticulous planning. How not to lose yourself amidst all the appointments and responsibilities? And – most importantly – how to still find time for relaxing and recharging yourself?

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            These daily planning tips will help you have more stress-free days:

            Leave bigger intervals between meetings

            If you schedule too many appointments or chores in a day, you’ll probably end up late at some point, and as a result – more stressed. There are many different reasons why people are late, but poor planning is a major factor too.

            Plan time to relax

            As weird as it may sound, you should try and schedule your resting time. For example, if you only have one free evening this week, and a friend tries to squeeze in a meeting, feel free to say no. Don’t feel obliged to specify the reason for your refusal, just say that you are busy.

            Try to be a little pessimistic

            We’re often packed with plans or running late for errands because we tend to be overly optimistic – about the traffic, the time it takes to do things, etc. Instead, try an opposite tactic — assume you’ll hit traffic or the meeting will take longer.

            Try waking up earlier

            Sometimes even waking up 30 minutes earlier can give you the much-needed head start for several errands of the day. But remember to get enough sleep every night, even if it means going to bed earlier.

            Plan your day the day before

            Chances are your day will be much better organized if you pack a lunch and lay out an outfit before going to bed.

            Designate a time for checking emails and social messages

            If you start checking your messages between appointments, you risk getting lost in a sea of messages that need replies. Designate a time for this activity or do it in case you arrived early to a meeting.

            4. Let Go of Unhealthy and Time-Consuming Habits

            If there’s one thing we should get rid of in the new year, it’s the habits that steal our time, provide instant gratification but don’t offer any value in the long term. Or even worse, leave a negative impact on our health.

            Here are some common (and pointless) habits along with tips on how to get rid of them:

            Binge-watching TV series

            Even if most online television platforms offer you lists of “Best TV Shows to Binge Watch”, being addicted to series is a major time-waster.

            You can manage this addiction in several ways, for example, watch one episode per day (or a few per week) as a reward, only after you’ve finished an assignment or done a house chore. Or try replacing this habit with exercise or reading a book – this will be hard at first but should stick after a few weeks. You can also try to track how much time you spend on TV or movies – seeing how much of your life you are wasting might urge you to do something about it.

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            Running on coffee

            Being a coffee addict is kind of a stylish addiction nowadays, but it’s not that innocent as it may initially seem. Besides addiction being a problem in itself, drinking too much coffee (more than 500-600 mg of caffeine a day) may lead to nervousness, insomnia, an upset stomach, a fast heartbeat, and even muscle tremors.[2]

            As a solution, try switching to tea or edible coffee – a more sustainable, healthy, and productivity-enhancing alternative. For example, Coffee Pixels are solid coffee bars that generate a more even energy kick throughout the day without the coffee-induced abstinence and dehydration.

            Procrastination

            Fighting procrastination requires some serious willpower. If it is a problem in your daily life or work, try ”eating the frog” in the morning – get over your biggest or hardest tasks first, then tackle everything else.

            Alternatively, use time tracking software to monitor exactly how much time you waste on unproductive actions, websites or apps. Once you know exactly how much time you’re spending unproductively, try to limit your time on social media, for example to just 20 minutes per day.

            If nothing else works, try bribing yourself — promise yourself to do something fun or pleasant when you finish your assignment.

            Whichever habit you want to give up, consider using some habits building tools to make a contract with yourself and reward yourself for milestones achieved.

            5. Stop over-consuming

            We live in the age of consumerism – huge manufacturers with their promise of a comfortable life on the one hand, and growing environmental threats – that are the direct result of our modern lifestyle – on the other hand. There’s only one solution – try to consume less whenever and wherever you can.

            Before making additional purchases, ask yourself these questions:

            • Do I really need it? Did I need it yesterday?
            • Can’t I buy it used or borrow it from friends?
            • Can I rent it?
            • Can I make it myself?
            • Am I buying the most sustainable version of this product?

            For example, check if the brand you chose is conscious about the environment, for example, are the products they manufacture energy efficient? Do they try to use less packaging?

            Also, if you often find yourself buying too many groceries, promise to buy only the amount that fits in one shopping bag (that you bring along). If you often forget to take your shopping bag with you, get yourself a 2-in-1 wallet with a built-in shopping bag for more eco-friendly shopping.

            6. Learn to Unplug from Your Phone

            Today’s world is crammed with information, and many people struggle to keep focus on what’s truly important. There’s just too much going on in the world – too much to read, to watch, to know, too many conversations to participate in.

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            But how to refuse the temptation to check the phone and start using social media in a controlled, not a compulsive way?

            Some tips for managing your phone-dependency:

            Spend only a limited amount of battery per day

            For example, start your day with 50% battery life, and manage your phone usage so that you’ll make it till the evening.

            Block distracting apps and notifications on your phone and computer

            Choose one-hour, two-hour or longer blocking sessions and enjoy the positive impact this will have on your mood and productivity.[3]

            Set your phone on flight mode

            When you start doing an important task that requires full focus, set your phone on flight mode so that nobody can disturb you.

            Leave your phone at home or in the office when you go for lunch

            You’ll see that the feeling of being unreachable for a moment is actually very liberating.

            The Bottom Line

            As a new year begins, we’re all excitedly looking forward to what adventures await ahead of us.

            But this year, promise yourself this:

            Instead of having a never-ending list of tasks and commitments, focus on the truly meaningful ones. And cross-out all the rest without feeling guilty.

            Less is more. Make this year count. We’re all rooting for you.

            Featured photo credit: Brooke Lark via unsplash.com

            Reference

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