Mark Smiciklas is the president of Intersection Consulting, a Vancouver-based digital marketing and communications agency that teaches organizations how to leverage the dynamics of Web 2.0 to achieve business goals. He is an established digital marketing and social media practitioner recognized for his visual thinking and strategic, no-nonsense approach. His service offering is framed by core beliefs in listening, stakeholder engagement, trust creation, and employee empowerment. An interest in the evolution of social business continues to motivate him, as does a passion for teaching. Smiciklas has developed and taught social media strategy classes for undergraduates and adult learners at a number of Canadian universities. He also has spoken about a wide variety of digital marketing topics at corporate and public events and workshops. His genuine love of technology and people continues to ignite ongoing learning and new thinking that aim to help individuals and organizations connect with their audiences. Smiciklas hangs out full-time at intersectionconsulting.com/ blog. He can be found on Twitter at @Intersection1. He is also a regular contributor to socialmediaexplorer.com, the popular digital and social media marketing and online communications blog. He lives in North Vancouver, BC, Canada, with his lovely wife, three kids, and Max the dog.
The Power of Infographics: Using Pictures to Communicate and Connect With Your Audiencesby Mark Smiciklas
Need to overcome information overload and get your message across? Infographics are your secret weapon. Using them, you can deliver knowledge and ideas visually, so your audiences can understand them quickly - and take action. In The Power of Infographics, Mark Smiciklas helps you understand how to leverage the use of powerful infographics: visual/b>
Need to overcome information overload and get your message across? Infographics are your secret weapon. Using them, you can deliver knowledge and ideas visually, so your audiences can understand them quickly - and take action. In The Power of Infographics, Mark Smiciklas helps you understand how to leverage the use of powerful infographics: visual representations capable of transforming complex data or concepts into intuitive, instant knowledge. Writing from a business perspective, Smiciklas reveals how to use infographics both inside and outside the organization: to build brands, make sales, serve clients, align teams behind new strategies, and more. This straightforward, visual, common-sense based book explains:
• What infographics are, and why they work so well
• How to visualize statistical data, business processes, time, geography, lists, relationships, and concepts
• How to communicate the "personal" through infographics
• Best practices for observation, processing ideas, creating highly effective infographics, and publishing them
• How to plan for and measure the ROI of infographics
• And much more...
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The Power of Infographics by Mark Smiciklas, review by Tyler Milan Infographics let data tell a story through a picture rather than an large amount of text. A picture is more likely to get attention. The Federal Budget is far more comprehensible in a sunburst chart than a data sheet with lots of numbers. If your business could benefit from visual communication, but you don’t know where to start, The Power of Infographics is your introductory course to the field. The solopreneur or old-school enterprise trying to keep up in the digital age will appreciate this guide and its focus on the strategic use of infographics in business. Author Mark Smiciklas covers every possible opportunity to use visual data representations instead of basic text or numerical data. From internal concerns such as clarifying policies and improving interdepartmental communication to external goals such as softening a brand image and illuminating price structures, every point is supported by articles and interviews with experts ranging from MIT scholars to Social Media CEOs. A marketing department will find plenty of evidence or ammunition in these pages to defend budget increases. I liked the practicality of section III which contains a balanced and detailed guide covering how to think about creating the graphic. Basic steps such as how to define the audience, the information and the message will be invaluable to those just beginning. In-house versus outsourcing and finding the right designer to fit the project are knowledgeably addressed. Initially, the design consultants and agencies mentioned in the pricing section, resource guide and sprinkled throughout the book seemed like advertising, but taken with the right perspective they are a good place to start. I really hoped that the author would spend a little more time on design itself. Instead, he provides links in a section called “Inspiration” and more resources in the last chapter. Recommended sites such as coolinfographics and flowingdata are some next steps if the reader wants to keep going. The tone is friendly, yet practical. The graphics are not intimidating or edgy, which lends a gentle almost soothing quality to the pages. Unfortunately, not all the infographics made sense (figure 3.5 Social Business Organization) and in one case the text was too small to be read (figure 5.4 Listen Before Communicating). Yes, I could look up the image on the digital version which is available for free for 45 days, but I shouldn’t have to. The only extra content available on the digital version is a link to his website. This was a missed opportunity to include some actual extra material. The blogger, journalist or academic looking to improve their visual data skills will probably not find much to learn in this book, but it’s not aimed at them. Mark Smiciklas is a Digital Strategist and his goal is to show how to leverage infographics in the business domain. The Power of Infographics is a comprehensive and gentle guide to this visual tool.