There are certain technical charts, diagrams and other visual media that probably bring back horrible memories of High School aptitude testing and harsh criticism of performance. Fortunately, the present generation of web designers, graphic artists and creative writers have found a way to turn those passing points of trauma into massive business exposure and renowned Web content.
Skills like SEO and link mastery are useful, but they tend to irritate readers more than peak interest in a service or product. The key to your business site or creative contributions becoming viral is dependent on a very creative media approach.
It is imperative that in order to become a ranking site, and not just one that has clever SEO juice to weasel its way into everyone’s browser, you must successfully integrate useful written content with eye-catching, universally attractive visual content.
Just a few months ago, my solution for eye-popping content consisted of blogs, video and social media. I am a web designer by trade, thus aware they existed but consciously refrained from jumping into the world of online infographics. It was a bit of an self-induced intervention since I was technically an infographics “virgin.” My business, Biz Name Wiz, has greatly benefited since.
Infographics are a visual aid which accompanies your master content, or illustrates any type of trend in business, economics and “virtually” any other subject. The more relevant the infographic is to your content, the more people will be inclined to adopt what it illustrates and share it with their demographic. It can be simple maps and charts, or complex how-to diagrams that are unique on the Web.
Biz Name Wiz is a company that provides a free business name generator as well as creative business naming help to start-ups and those wanting fresh profiles. The brain center of our team decided infographics are the correct type of evolution with which we could really grow.
After a bit of looking around, I discovered that Infographic creation services average $5000 per project! Having a tiny budget, I was stuck with accomplishing the impossible. I somehow needed to create a professional-looking infographic without breaking the bank. Oh yes, it can be done. Here is my “secret” recipe for success, and how my ingredients only cost me $279.
Infographic Success Recipe
- 1 Highly interesting and creative bit of content with useful subject. The subject must be attractive, or site popularity will not rise.
- 1 Tireless Researcher. This is the major “prep step.” (Cost ~$50)
- 1 Fast Writer (Cost ~$100, save on this expense using your own honed writing skills)
- 1 Experienced Artist with Photoshop mastery (Cost ~$100)
- 1 Month Pro Subscription to Piktochart (Cost ~$29)
Total: ~$279 Now let’s get cooking!
This is the crux of your infographic success recipe. I found an incredibly talented research expert by posting a job at oDesk.com. My ad contained the following:
“Looking for a web research expert who can help us find a “buzz worthy” subject for an infographic. Must be incredibly fluent in written and spoken English. Must proficiently navigate Google Trends, Google Keywords and Google Spreadsheets. You are required to have high English test scores, be proactive to your inquiries via Skype chat and email. Must have logged over 100 hours on oDesk. No rookies.”
I then asked the researcher to come up with 10 ideas using Google Trends to discover subject matter that is hot and trend-related to our business. Also, to use Google Keyword Tool to narrow down the subject to keywords with substantial search traffic.
After doing all of this we decided on the subject of “funny business names.” Admittedly, I always go for low-hanging fruit. This means a low-competition keyword with several thousand global monthly searches. We asked our new researcher to find 100 funny business names. She delivered it in stellar fashion and it only took $50 of her services.
Use your in-house team to dive into the content pool. If your writing resources suck, then take advantage of a brokered copy writing site like Textbroker.com. The downside is you cannot communicate directly with the creative team, the site moderates it incredibly well. Generous compensation for expert writers who provide type of service is about $.067 per word plus a small brokerage fee. (1500 words = $100 )
Piktochart will get mad at me for saying this but “Picktochart an AMAZING online WYSIWYG tool to help quickly create high quality infographics. However, it’s not worth paying the recurring monthly fee for, and the design interface is limiting to the point of frustration for any professional designer!”
That being said, use it for one month to kick start your style in the right direction, and for its large library of style elements. I started our project in Piktograph essentially as a visual prototyping tool. We gave the username and password to the designer hired through eLance.com to recreate the prototype offline in Photoshop. Obviously, the powerhouse Photoshop software allows any designer a higher level of creativity and direct communication. Design Cost: $129 (10 hours @ $10/hr + $29 for Picktochart)
Technical work on the project should only take about two weeks. Our project took about a month because I had to find a way to fit development into my regular work and home-based diaper changing duty. Budgeting time and balancing the cooperation between the team was really the most difficult and rewarding element.
It’s possible to produce high-quality content for a little dough.
It’s a little like producing a great movie, but with a tiny budget. Think about James Cameron’s Avatar. It would have been a monumental achievement even without a huge studio because everyone involved gave it their utmost.
The process of integrating infographics to your site should adhere to this formula. Everyone must give it their best and produce absolutely concrete, inarguably high quality work. It sounds harsh but, spend the time. If then, team members are not up to par, pay them, wish them well and replace them.
So, the final infographic outcome? We’re stoked!
Not only has the introduction of the infographic showcased our creative writing skills to the world it has also increased our website traffic, brand awareness and overall “buzz!”
I think the team at Biz Name Wiz succeeded. Please judge for yourself!