When To Use An Infographic CV

Infographics are graphics that display information in an easy-to-understand way. Doing this enables viewers to digest a large amount of facts and figures more quickly and easily than if they were written in black and white.

Their popularity is down to the aesthetic and expressive way in which they are displayed. This was originally done with bars and lines, but designs these days can be extravagant including icons and pictograms which make content more appealing and eye-catching.

It’s for this reason that the infographic can be a favourable method of creating CVs. And with the current state of the jobs market, having a curriculum vitae that stands out from the crowd is extremely valuable.

However, when it comes to your CV, there are a few things to bear in mind before you decide on an infographic.

The job application
Suitable industries to target with an infographic CV are the creative ones, such as graphic design and animation. This way, you can show off both your acumen for the job, such as your qualifications and experience, as well as your creative design skills, whereas a standard written CV would restrict you to the former.

Competition is fierce for any job at the moment, but it is particularly so for creative positions. This means that examples of your work will be more likely to entice potential employers, rather than dissuade them.

An infographic CV excels here because it acts as a piece of work, either as a stand-alone example or even integrated into a portfolio.

However, other fields such as finance and medicine might be less receptive to such an exuberant CV. After all, your creativity isn’t really what a potential employer is looking for. They will more than likely be interested in your qualifications and experience, in which case a standard CV may be more advantageous.

Overshadowing your CVs content
Your CV needs to stand out and grab attention for the right reasons. When created successfully, an infographic CV does this by carefully balancing the emphasis between design and the content within that design, so that they complement each other.

On the other hand, if you try to be too flashy and go for an all-singing, all-dancing infographic CV, you could end up taking the focus away from the content, making it harder to understand and leaving the reader nonplussed.

Similarly, if you’re applying for a position that sets criteria slightly above your qualifications or experience (and we’ve all applied for such posts), it’s easy to grasp at anything that might just sway a potential employer. In these instances, it’s advisable to avoid using an infographic as a pretty design that’s intended to mask any inadequacies.

Versatility
Before you jump into designing an infographic CV, consider how you’ll be applying for positions once it’s finished. If you send printed CVs through the post or present them in person, an infographic is ideal because you can design and print at home.

Applying online, however, might throw up a few problems with restrictions on what you can upload in an application such as PDF or Microsoft Word files.
The former shouldn’t be an issue; any software you use to design your infographic CV should export your finished document as a PDF.

Working with Word, on the other hand, can cause problems because the software isn’t intended for image-heavy layouts. This can result in changes in appearance when viewed by the potential employer. The alternative is to have a Word version of your CV, as well as an infographic CV that you can use when it’s appropriate.

As you can see, infographic CVs can be a great way to distinguish yourself in a crowded market and they’re quite simple to create: there are some programs specifically tailored to designing them and desktop publishers enable it too.

But before you dive into the world of infographic CVs, ask yourself whether they’re the best option for the positions for which you’re applying.

How to Create a Powerful Infographic When You Do Not Have a Designer

Infographics are a powerful way to visually communicate information, to share knowledge and convey a story. Infographics can easily communicate complex information in a clear and concise manner at a single glance. Infographics are typically put together by a designer who takes the elements that need to be communicated and then builds a graphic description of that information that instantly communicates the story behind the numbers in a creative and interesting visual manner. If you do not have the budget, desire, or time to involve a graphic designer in this creative visual storytelling process, there are seven important steps that can make anyone an infographics expert.

1. Collect accurate information

The first step required to prepare an infographic is to gather high quality source information from reliable sources. An infographic is only as good as its supporting information. Once this information has been obtained and verified, the infographic can be designed to effectively tell the story.

As part of the information gathering, one must know the subject matter area, target audience, communication objective, and message that one intends to deliver.

2. Select best tool for infographic construction

Finding the right tool for the job can sometimes be tricky. Developing sophisticated and effective infographics can require toolsthat may span many different products. Fortunately, the right software tool can provide you with everything you need to create polished diagrams that beautifully and accurately represent your story, no matter how complex it may be.

3. Structure infographic story

Research the collected information, and determine the key points of your message. Clearly label key points and organize information flow by defining the sequence of visual events in your storyline that form a single story arc.

A visual story should have three visually separated parts: beginning, middle, and end. The beginning attracts attention of one’s target audience and introduces the story. The middle holds the attention of audience and explains your story topic in detail. The ending contains conclusions and completes your visual story for the audience.

Use visuals to maximize the impact of your message and reduce the time it takes to explain your ideas and concepts. These visuals may include both information visualization and decorative graphic design elements such as charts, graphs, diagrams, schemes, maps, plans, clipart, pictograms, drawings, and photos.

Use a minimal amount of text to enhance the impact and transform your visuals into a solid self-contained infographic story.

4. Select relevant visuals to convey message

Determine how to arrange contents visually
To determine how to visually organize contents of your infographic story, you need to decide how the key point must be organized. For example: in a list, a grid, timeline, or calendar, on a geographic map or city plan, into a process diagram or flowchart, statistical analysis, as a hierarchy, a network, or as a cloud.

Optimize your infographics for output devices
Explore what output devices will be used by target audience to see your infographics. It may severely limit the size of your infographics and visuals used, especially in case of smartphones and tablets. For mobile devices, use space-saving graphic design elements.

On other hand, if you plan display your infographics onto a large displays or large printout, it is best to use vector graphics for high quality image scaling.

You have to take this into account when you select and layout the visuals.

Select graphic design elements
You should select graphic design elements for visualization that correspond with collected information for your story.

Each visualized piece of information should explain a single, easy to understand idea. Each graphic design element should communicate one message clearly.

Avoid repetitive visuals. Use different visuals and color labeling for different key points.

Use creative design elements to maximize the impact of your infographics. But remember, each of your visuals must be clear and should enhance your message.

To quickly and easily select clear and creative visuals for your infographics, use libraries of pre-designed vector graphic design elements.

5. Explain complex ideas simply

Main messages of key points and the overall narrative of the whole story must be clear in seconds for target audience.

Represent information graphically
Use:
images of story subjects as markers of visuals and text blocks.
images of well-known people, objects and things for quick recognition.
common graphical symbols and pictograms instead of words in data labels and legends.
pictoral charts instead of bar or line charts to better demonstrate quantitative data.
background image that indicate basic subject matter of your story.
short talking points in headlines and captions.
short talking points in the page title, headlines for key points, text blocks, and captions for visuals to quickly explain main messages of your visual story.
Be selective in the type you use
Use up to three fonts in your infographics to make your infographics easy to view and read.

Minimize scrolling
To keep your story easy to digest, try to limit document length and the number of content elements.

Be sure that each content element conveys one simple idea that is easy to understand at a glance.

Choose only the most essential content elements to explain the main message of your story.

If your document is still too long, try to use space-saving graphic elements and arrangement.

6. Show concrete information

If you present time-oriented data in your infographics, give the audience an impression of the newest information with the most modern design.

Label date and time
Clearly show the dates and times in your infographic document and make sure each content element presents actual data.

Refresh infographics as source information changes
To keep your infographic current, design it so that it is easy to refresh. so you can quickly change content elements when time-sensitive source information changes. The easiest way to quickly refresh data is by using auto-refreshing graphic elements.For example: auto-refreshing charts, graphic indicators for visual dashboards, or meteorological graphic indicators from weather informers.

Modern and event-driven design
For infographics that show dynamic time-sensitive information, use modern design in conjunction with events-related symbols and images to present a fresh and stylish ambiance.

7. Provide sharing

You create your infographics to present to target audience. To access your audience, you can use web and paper publishing, references on social networks, displays at public events and meetings, e-mail distribution, etc.

For example:

Publish your infographics on your website or blog. Add sharing features on your web page.
Publish your infographics to subject-specific e-magazines, websites, blogs and social networking groups where your target audience is concentrated.
Create account and subject-specific board on Pinterest.com, and submit your infographics.
Show your infographics on display boards at public events that the target audience is likely to visit.
Show your infographics at subject- specific meetings as a printed poster on a stand or as a presentation using a projector.
Proliferate your infographics using e-mail.
Announce your infographics via Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, etc.
To easily share your infographics, create them using vector graphics software tools that allow you to save in file formats and have the capability to share through different distribution channels – web sites, blogs, social networks, email, printing in different sizes, presentations using a projector, showing on board displays.

On the web pages of your website or blog,where the infographics are published, add sharing features like, “Tweet”, “Pin it”, “Share”, or “Send via email” buttons to allow readers to announce and share your infographics on Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook, or via email.

Follow these 7 simple steps above to create actual, impressive, and convincing infographics that visually tell your complex story quickly and simply.

Content Marketers: 3 Reasons to Start Using Infographics in Content Marketing Now

As a content marketer you likely already know that infographics are quickly becoming one of the most utilized forms of content marketing, and for good reason, as 90 percent of information that enters the brain is in visual format. As a participant in the Social Media Marketing MOOC Specialization at Northwestern University and a veteran content marketer with an interest in new trends, I have found two articles that point to the importance of infographics when it comes to getting the attention of readers.

In the article “9 Awesome Reasons to Use Infographics in Your Content Marketing,” Jeff Bullas discusses the importance and growing popularity of infographics as a content marketing tool. In his article and the accompanying infographic that he provides, Jeff points out that infographics are much easy for readers to understand and that 40 percent of people will respond better to visual information than plain text. According to his own research Mr. Bullas found that from the beginning of 2010 to the beginning of 2012 searches for infographics increased by over 800 percent.

In the second article titled “7 Reasons to Use Infographics in Your Content Marketing Strategy,” Kevin Tynan discusses the benefits of providing readers with well-designed infographics. Mr. Tynan points out that infographics help reinforce brand position, attract attention better than traditional content, are easy to share on social network sites, and appeal more to visual learners. He also points out that using infographics is a great way to improve Search Engine Optimization.

After reading these two articles and taking into consideration my own knowledge of content marketing I have come up with three recommended actions content marketers should take in order to utilize the many benefits of using infographics:

Create Relevant Infographics – Make sure your infographics are relevant to the topics you are discussing and contain content that people want to know about.

Make It Simple – The reason infographics are so popular is their easy readability so be sure to keep infographics simple and do not overdo it on the amount of content.

Share Your Infographic – Creating it is simply not enough, in order to benefit from your infographic, and so others can benefit from it as well, be sure to share it extensively with followers on all of your social media networks.

Starting today, you should begin utilizing the power of infographics to attract individuals in your high value market and start providing them with easy access to your knowledge of your industry.