Anyone who has been following me for awhile will know something about me: I love infographics. In past content, I frequently recommended using them as a way of engaging with social media followers, drawing links, sharing content and improving your traffic hits. Guess what? I still love infographics.
Yes, many marketers have left them behind for newer, shinier things. And I am not saying you shouldn't be going for those other new methods; we all know the value of diversity in content marketing. I am just saying that classics still have their place, especially on the right platform.
Want proof that this is still hot stuff?
Google Infographics 2019 and see how many images pop up for the past twelve months. Go to Pinterest and see its hottest trending content in its biggest topics (such as health and fitness). Infographics or collage form visuals are everywhere and now is a great time to bring them back if you've fallen off the wagon.
Making Infographics Build Links
Now comes the big question: how do we still generate links using infographics? There are multiple ways and they all keep up with both what worked before and what has to be adapted as we move into 2020.
Keep It Valuable
I am starting with the most obvious first because I really feel that we all need a reminder sometimes about the need for valuable content versus quantity of content. It is true that if you release something hundreds of times a day it is going to build links, but they are going to be short lives and you will always have to produce at that level.
Don't be that guy. Instead, make sure that every infographic you make, no matter the format, is something that will be genuinely valuable to the viewer. If you can make it evergreen, all the better. I prefer to leave hot news and trending content for blogging or vlogging and infographics for the stuff that's gonna stick around.
Make It Easy
One of the biggest complaints I have heard over the years is that infographics are too time- and energy-consuming to make. I can sympathize... if you are doing them from scratch.
You don't have to be a wiz designer to make appealing infographics. In fact there are several handy resources available to make your work much easier. We recommend the following tools:
Canva: Here you can use drag-and-drop features and professional looking templates to design consistently stunning infographics.
Venngage: A very intuitive tool similar to Canva, Venngage allows you to choose from a 100+ infographic template library and the rest is child’s play.
Piktochart: This tool allows you to start from a template or create an infographic from scratch. Piktograph has a powerful chart and mapping elements to help illustrate even the most complex concepts.
Fiverr: If you are just not super confident or simply do not have the time, Fiverr will have a freelancer available to take on your work.
There was this little faction of marketers for awhile who seemed to believe that using a service with templates was somehow cheating.
That just isn't true and you can make much higher quality work, faster, with tools like Piktochart and Venngage. These tools are made to make infographics as visually appealing as possible, without taking days to create them.
Know Where to Post Them
We have our obvious starters: your own website (this is crucial), Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook. But there are actual directories you can use that will really get your infographic out there onto the web and build links, usually as a paid service.
I personally prefer to stick to free and more creative sources. My favorite is Imgur, the Reddit specific photo hosting site. It has a community all its own and it makes it easy to connect to further social networks. You can find a list here that is pretty extensive but sadly many of the links are old and haven't been updated in quite some time.
It is worth hunting through for good ones.
Make It Interactive
Static infographics are great. But even better are those that the viewer can interact with, as they draw more attention. That means they are more likely to be shared. You would be amazed at what you can create when you opt for interactive visualizations.
For example, Parable of the Polygons is a fully interactive story that expands beyond your typical infographic and into something much bigger. Google made one that explains in clear language how search works.
The Huffington Post created one in 2013 that is still used today, which treks the number of gun deaths in the 90 days following Sandy Hook. Whatever the topic, keeping viewers engaged with interactivity is far better than losing them to dry material.
Again, creating an interactive infographic is easier than you think. Venngage allows an export to an interactive PDF file and here's a detailed tutorial on how to create interactive infographics using Photoshop.
Put It Behind a Subscriber Wall
This one still works, I can attest to that. Email campaigns still make up a lion's share of results and 99Firms found that for every dollar spent on email marketing campaigns, there is a $40 ROI generation. Wow!
Now put that into perspective of your monthly or annual content budget... you should be doing everything possible to exploit this still very valuable platform. I like using infographics because people tend to get annoyed when they have to sign up for text based content.
But they are much more willing to give their email if you should them a snippet of an infographic. They are also more likely to share it. After all, you made receiving it transactional. They want to get more out of it then a peek. If you add in it being valuable content and obviously on a topic they are invested in, you can a great way to get the infographic out and build your email list.
Creating The Infographic
Now that we have covered the backlink building portion, let’s do a quick rundown of how to best make an infographic:
- Show, don't tell. It is the visuals that are doing the work.
- Keep it succinct. It is so easy to get long winded. Sentences should be short and no more than one per point.
- Try to use unique graphics, especially self made if possible.
- Don't over clutter. Too many graphics will muck up the works.
- Have clear margins, boxes and borders.
- Feel free to get creative but remember you are still working on a graph system.
- If there is too much info, make more than one infographic.
- Properly attribute your sources. I can't tell you how often I have seen this one ignored... sources go at the bottom.
- Make it enjoyable, not dry data and facts.
Ask yourself: "Would a ten year old understand this?" Unless it is a highly technical niche, keep is as simple as you can.
- Do you have some tips for generating links with infographics in 2020?
Let us know in the comments!