Infographics are not going away.
They’re among the most popular forms of visual content shared online and were the B2B content marketing format with the biggest increase in use last year, according to the Content Marketing Institute.
They can also boost media coverage and web traffic, says Laura King-Homan, communications specialist at Omaha Public Power District (OPPD).
“Some of our local outlets happily republish our infographics,” she says, “and we’ve also increased our web traffic tenfold since including infographics in content we post there.”
Here are three ideas for adding infographics, and potentially viral images, to your own content and media relations mix:
1. Rely less on press releases; create media packages instead. The OPPD decommissioned its Fort Calhoun Station nuclear plant in October. Rather than issue a release about the event, the PR team emailed a short media blast with a link to an in-depth post on its own content hub, “The Wire.”
The post included video, photos and an illustration of the reactor. “Story updates were also added to the story in real time,” King-Homan says. “Then we compiled the assets together as a package and uploaded them to Dropbox for the media to download.”
The team used Dropbox to accommodate its large visuals. It also included mandatory photo credits for all images.
The result was more accurate reporting about a complex project. The OPPD also saw more than 2,100 Facebook “likes” for the post.
The post in question didn’t include an infographic, “but we often use a ‘media package’ to publicize and share infographics with the press,” King-Homan says.
Register for PR Daily’s Jan. 27 virtual summit “Engaging Infographics: Create Visuals That Increase Reach and ROI” for more tips from data visualization experts Karl Gude, Randy Krum and Laura King-Homan.
2. Don’t overlook TV. King-Homan concedes that many dailies won’t plug in your infographics outright. “That’s because they’ll usually have their own visual editors on board,” she says. “In those cases, infographics are still helpful to editors on your beat, because they can help explain a complicated story.”
Trade outlets, however, are usually open to running outside infographics; so are regional TV stations. “Our local TV stations run ours straight up, because they’re easy and because they’re often short-staffed,” says King-Homan.
3. Publish more articles with images on LinkedIn. Consider posting articles with video, images and infographics to LinkedIn, especially if you’re in B2B.
“We’re utility-focused, so our stories won’t always get big-time play on Twitter,” says King-Homan. “That’s why we’ve started posting directly into LinkedIn’s publishing platform, where we’ve regularly seen 40+ shares per story on any given workforce issue or project.”
She advises posting stories that give readers a “behind the scenes” view of your company or organization. Her team has also found that Mondays are the best day of the week to publish on LinkedIn for optimal engagement.
Brian Pittman is a Ragan Communications consultant and webinar manager for PR Daily’s PR University. Infographics and data visualization experts Karl Gude, Randy Krum and Laura King-Homan will share more tips in PR University’s Jan. 27 virtual summit, “Engaging Infographics: Create Visuals That Increase Reach and ROI.”