The Art of Timeline Infographics: What You Need to Know
One of the most important things to understand about content marketing, in general, is that not all Infographics are created equally. Different designs and structures all have different purposes and only by carefully selecting the one the situation calls for will you have a chance of achieving the objectives you’ve set your sights on.
Case in point: despite the name, a timeline Infographic is about more than just tracking progress made or breaking down activity against the backdrop of long periods of time. It’s about educating, informing and even entertaining your audience in a visually interesting and relevant way that helps crystalize things and put them into perspective for people who are eager to know more about who you are and what you do. In fact, there are a host of unique benefits and opportunities that timeline Infographics bring to the table that are absolutely worth exploring.
The Major Benefits of Timeline Infographics: Breaking Things Down
In terms of your broader marketing objectives, one of the major benefits that timeline Infographics (and any type of Infographic, really) brings to the table can be summed up in three beautiful little letters: SEO.
Over the last few years, Google in particular has regularly updated its internal algorithm in an attempt to eliminate spam sites from its search results. People who have used “black hat” or otherwise shady link building techniques in an effort to inflate their search engine rankings have been penalized as a result. Google has made their stance on this very clear: you need to be using “natural” link building methods and you need to be using a lot of them.
Timeline Infographics are a huge benefit in that regard because the format itself is perfect for receiving a lot of natural links and social activity. Infographics are very likely to be shared on sites like Facebook and Twitter when compared to other types of content, which will ultimately feed back into and empower your larger SEO efforts. This doesn’t mean you should drop whatever you’re doing and exclusively create timeline Infographics. But using the format whenever the situation calls for it is very much a good idea.
Timeline Infographics are also great because, as a format, they’re very malleable. They open themselves up to loads of associated techniques, all of which creates better and more informed content for your audience. You could supplement that timeline Infographic by sitting down with a line graph maker to visualize some of that data you’re talking about in a whole new way, for example. If you were telling the story of your business over time, you could even use a bar graph maker to supplement the original Infographic, visualizing what your company is spending its money on and what your customers are getting in return.
But speaking of “informed,” maybe the biggest benefit that timeline Infographics bring to the table has to do with all of the different boxes they check on your road to creating quality content in the first place. For the sake of example, let’s say you were trying to get your audience primed and ready for an upcoming product launch that is still six months away. Instead of just saying “our product will be ready for purchase at the end of October” in the beginning of February, really use this as an opportunity to break down all the hard work you’re going to do during that time.
Visualize each deadline you have and show the progress that is going to be made to get something ready for launch. At that point, people won’t just know what your product does and why it should matter to them – they’ll be able to see all the hard work that you’re putting into it every single day. It’ll feel more “real” to them when they’re finally ready to buy it, as they can see all of the effort that went into it – and when that effort occurred.
Likewise, this will go a long way towards humanizing your brand and establishing an emotional connection with your base. It’ll remind customers that there are real people behind this product, all of whom are pulling long hours to make their lives better in every conceivable way.
So yes, timeline Infographics are a great way to visualize information – but they’re also a lot more than that. The SEO boosts alone make this technique more than worth it for most people, to say nothing of the data visualization and brand awareness benefits that you’d be hard-pressed to find anywhere else.
About the Author
Payman Taei is the founder of Visme, an easy-to-use online tool to create engaging presentations, infographics, and other forms of visual content. He is also the founder of HindSite Interactive, an award-winning Maryland digital agency specializing in website design, user experience, and web app development.