Snzzzzz….that’s the sound your readers will start making if you don’t put more oomph in your blog by adding compelling and visually stimulating graphics. Sure, you want to get your point across, but people don’t want to read a novel especially when they only have a few minutes to spare.
So, how else can you convey your message without using too much text? Why, through pulsating graphics of course! Read on to learn what to use, as well as how and when to use them.
Come Up with an Idea
Before you get started with graphics, you need to have an idea. Keep in mind that you can only squeeze so much information into a graphic. Furthermore, it needs to fit on your page. You want to stick to a theme that can link to other pieces of information in order to share your story.
Give It Some Shine
Once you have your ideas put together, think of a style. Your graphics should be well-balanced as well as consistent in its look. Also, it should offer bite-sized chunks of information. Moreover, you want your graphics to make use of size and color to draw in readers.
Keep It Simple
The last thing you want is for your graphics to be dizzying and distracting. So, try to limit it to one style for images and photos. Use only one font or two, at the most. Keep your color palette to a maximum of four different shades; it helps if they are complimentary. Not to mention, you should ensure each section flows well.
When it comes to images, size does matter. The ideal horizontal width is around 700 pixels. Anything larger may come with resizing issues. Don’t let the graphic get any higher than 5,000 pixels; otherwise, you risk losing your viewers’ attention.
Also, you want to have quick load time. For that to happen, you should use compressed JPEG images. You can also experiment with shorter lengths such as 1,000 and 2,500 pixels to add some flash to some of your key points.
All of your data should be current, factual and beneficial. When posts have graphics included, studies show that they are more promptly shared on social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Here are some of the most popular topics used in graphics:
- The economy.
- Social media.
Appeal to Emotions
Using techniques that evoke emotions works! In fact, it doesn’t just work; it sells! You want your audience to connect with your product, brand or service. Although this cannot occur in a bubble. It only works if it is a true extension of your core beliefs.
There are challenges to appealing to emotions. You have to think of how you can connect with your target audience. Also, beyond your basic products and services; what types of experiences do you provide? Five factors of emotional marketing are:
- Fear (Something bad might happen).
- Guilt (How to alleviate this feeling).
- Pride (Make the client feel empowered).
- Greed (Package pricing or gifts with purchase).
- Love (Giving the best to your loved ones).
Make it Shareable
You worked hard creating your graphic, making it inviting, alluring and informative. So, isn’t the whole point to increase your readership? One way is by having your visitors share your graphics for you.
Now, if you make that option too difficult it might mean you aren’t making the most of your time. Here are tips to help you:
- Embed your graphic on your blog post.
- Include an embed code.
- Share it on LinkedIn.
- Prepare a Facebook-ready image.
- Use attention-grabbing headlines that tease.
- Post your graphics on a slideshare.
An infographic is information expressed graphically. Sometimes, patterns and trends can go undetected in a text-based post, so an infographic is needed to express them with more potency. This can help your readers to understand the significance of your data. Rich infographics can spice up your site so much more than a snooze-worthy pie chart. So, how do you get started? Here are three free sites you can use:
- Infogr.am (Offers six different layouts).
- Piktochart (Three free themes).
- Easel.ly (Twelve free layouts).
You want your infographics to be eye-catching, as if they were bursting off the page. Additionally, they should be:
A heat map is a two-dimensional map displaying two different colors that represent a group of data. Heat maps can be used to exhibit varying statistics such as for:
- Weather maps.
- Ocean salinity representations.
- Election results.
The good news is you don’t need a degree in graphic design to create a heat map. They are not only beautiful to look at, but they make digesting information much easier for your readers. For example, if you wanted to compare you customer locations to one of your competitor’s; a heat map would work well. HeatMapAPI is an example that you can use to create this visual tool.
A fever chart shows the change in data over a period of time. They are normally used for items such as:
- Stock prices.
- Commodities prices.
- Currency prices.
Fever charts may also be called line graphs. There is a vertical axis and a horizontal axis, both of which demonstrate a portion of the data. Each data point is connected by a line.
You can use Excel to create a fever chart. You would enter your data in the worksheet’s rows and columns, leaving none of them blank. After that, you would select each column and select the “Line graph” type.
A time-series chart is similar to a fever chart except it measures and demonstrates data points at successive time intervals. These can easily be created in the same way fever charts are created using Excel.
It is truly sensational how many ways graphics can spruce up your site. The important thing to remember is that while graphics will boost your intrigue factor, which might get you your heart’s desire; they should also be used wisely. Why? Because you still want your visitors to read your content. So, how will you use graphics on your blog?