Infographics (or information graphics) are not new. But they are increasingly popular. A visual representation of complex information, infographics range from geographical maps and simple images to statistical graphs.
The written case study has a long standing – well-deserved – reputation of providing reliable and detailed information. However, in a fast-paced age, where we’re accessing a continuous stream of information across countless platforms, we don’t always have time to process everything. Readers want to scan visuals, and visuals play better with international audiences. Among our five senses, the brain absorbs visual information the quickest.
Of course, bad infographics are no better than a bad 1,000 word case study (click here for a list of no-nos). For me, David McCandless provided a brilliant description of data visualisation during a TED talk in 2010: “visualising information so that we can see the patterns and connections that matter, and in designing that information so it makes more sense, or it tells a story, or allows to focus only on the information that is really important.”
The tone of infographics can be as diverse as entertaining to educational, portraying key information in a visually appealing manner. Another bonus is that once the reader is attracted to the infographic, they will likely be inclined to read the full story also.
In an information overloaded society, we believe the infographic case study, or more likely the case study plus infographic, will play an increasing role.
A picture may be worth 1,000 words, however, the challenge of conveying a 1,000 word case study in a single infographic is not a small one.
Making content easy for the consumer requires a larger investment in time from the case study creator and a will to experiment. We’re enjoying the challenge!