What makes a great piece of content? Other than it being helpful and informative? In my opinion, your next priority should be to make your content easily digestible, particularly if you have a lot of information to get across. Next, I would think about how shareable my content is. Will someone read it and find it so brilliant they will want to share it with others? Some people are a whizz at this sort of stuff and are writing content about topics that lends itself to all these qualities…but what if you’re writing about a complex topic? You want your content to be accessible and you want people to share it, but it’s a heavy or multi-layered topic? Nobody wants to read a solid block of text so this is where visual content can be your friend.
In this post, I’m going to tell you how to use visual content, such as infographics to make your complex topic more digestible and shareable.
What Is Digestible Visual Content?
Digestible content is what it sounds like…content that’s easy to digest. Usually, this means shortening the word count but there are also various other tips and tricks to make content digestible, such as making your content into a list-style blog, punctuating text with video, and using graphics and images to convey more complex content.
Various sources suggest the average human reads about 250 – 300 words per minute, but reading online is different and our brain receives information differently, depending on the type of content you are producing, paragraphs should be kept below 300 words for sure, but content such as sales copy on your websites home page is much better in blocks of 50-100 words!
Splitting up written content with visuals provides a rest for the brain and the change in the way information is being received will keep readers engaged. Some content marketing experts, such as Neil Patel, suggest using an image after every 150 words…
Using Infographics And Charts To Make Complex Information More Digestible
Images used throughout your content should be related to what you’re talking about. Yes, they can be decorative and provide a rest for the eye but do make sure they reflect the topic you are talking about.
When presenting complex information, instead of decorative images, you could present a portion of your information as an infographic, or a chart. Infographics are a great way to present information in an easily digestible way but how do you create one that isn’t too busy but still gets the relevant information across?
First, run through your written information and separate it into portions that make a key point. You don’t want to put all the information in your infographic but rather a summary of the portion – the key takeaway. Can you summarise it in about 25 words? Use these 25 words and an image or graphic to get your point across on the infographic, then move on to the next portion.
The idea is that the infographic provides a reader with key points at a glance and then to read further, they can scroll past the infographic and read the expanded version.
Certain types of information work better on infographics because they grab attention – you can use statistics, quotes, and facts, for example. These elements, particularly numbers should be highlighted and made to stand out.
Charts can also be used to get information across in an easier way. If your content contains a lot of data, always ask yourself if it would look better as a chart or graph. Statistical data and numbers can be difficult to absorb when it is written, but a chart provides a great visual and stops your reader from getting bored!
Using Visual Content To Make Complex Information Shareable
When you are putting together any content, you should always have shareability in the back of your mind. Of course, you should be using social media and other distribution channels to share your content, but shares from outside your business are more valuable and mean your content will reach a wider audience.
If you are writing a blog article, for example, what can you do to encourage people to share the blog? Of course, a reader could just share a link to the blog, but because people generally prefer visual content, they may be more likely to share the visual elements from your post. For that reason, you should ensure the visual elements – such as an infographic or chart, can stand alone as sharable content. Design these elements so that they make sense within the context of the blog, but also outside of it.
Remember to add branding elements to your shareable content too – it’s great if someone shares a visual element and a link to the post, but they may just share the element on its own and nobody would ever know you created it. Think where the element is likely to be shared – Instagram for example and then add your account handle on the visual so anyone else that comes across the element knows where it came from.
If you are struggling to turn complex information into digestible and shareable content, why not contact us and see how we can help?
We specialise in taking topics that on the surface may seem dull and using creative ways to make them appealing and easy to understand.