I Heard It From The PR Girl


Week 11: Infographics

Posted in Topic of the Week by laurynwilliams on March 26, 2010

Infographics

What are they?

Infographics are visual representations of information organized in a way so that a viewer can more easily understand the data than they would be able to by reading a lengthy paragraph. A few examples of infographics are graphs, pie charts, bar charts, direction maps, weather maps, and even road signs. Some of these infographics require a key or legend to explain to the reader the smaller symbols that are used.

“They are also sometimes used as communication tools; some travelers, for example, bring a chart with infographics of their basic needs which they can point to, asking for things like a bed, food, a phone, or water.”

Wisegeek     

How could one be useful in a story for your client?

Infographics can be used as a universal communication tool. If you are dealing with people who of different nationalities who speak different languages, infographics can be used to simplify the communication barrier. They are easier to understand because they used pictures and symbols that any intelligent being may be able to comprehend. These types of graphics are also very appealing.

“Pie chart: Ideal for showing what part of a total is used for each of several purposes.”

“Bar chart: Ideal for showing comparisons between years in such things as income, population, sales, and prices.”

“Graph: Somewhat like a bar chart, but better suited for showing changes over a long period of time.”

Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques (6th Ed.)

How do you go about creating one?

Almost everyone has created a map to show directions to someone’s house or for some type of school project where you had to create a graph or chart.

“Charts, diagrams, maps, etc., should be simple, colorful, and uncluttered.”  Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques (6th Ed.)

One can create an infographic on a computer using Microsoft Office, PowerPoint, and other software applications. Take into consideration though, if you plan on distributing material to the media you should use graphic artists and commercial illustrators.

Paraphrased from Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques (6th Ed.)

Example:

This graph shows how many pop-tabs are turned in each season by Alpha Delta Pi to the Ronald McDonald House (in billions).

 Pop Tab Graph

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