Read All This Text… *Gehron*

I know you probably will not read this post fully and in depth. Good! Please really do not because it’s not worth your time to go that far with it. Why do I say this? Pictures! As soon as I attach a picture to this post your eyes will beeline directly to it. Infographics are a beautiful thing when done right, which is difficult by the way. Just think back when you were a child in grade school. What did you do when the teacher was yammering on about ancient civilizations? That’s right, you probably thumbed through the book sitting in front of you and looked at all the funky pictures. Most likely those weird pictures were infographics. How neat is that?!

Infographics have a interesting and very simple science behind them. Mark Smiciklas explains in his blog the findings of Robert Lane and Dr. Stephen Kosslyn.

“Each letter in a word is essentially a symbol. To read text, the brain needs to act as a decoder first, matching those letters with shapes stored in memory. From there the brain must figure out how all the letters fit together to form words, how words form sentences, and how sentences form paragraphs. Although all this comprehension takes place in only a split second, relatively speaking, when compared to how the brain deals with images, the process requires considerably more mental effort.”

Smiciklas continued on saying that our brains are wired to choose infographics over text and this in turn makes acquiring fast facts easier. Companies also know this and take advantage of it. Would you be more likely to buy something from a picture ad or text ad? You’re exactly right, you will be more likely to buy because of a picture ad. “We have a natural tendency to trust images more than text,” states Randy Olson in Infographics Lie. Advertising agencies are very good at their jobs and can make infographics that don’t quite tell the truth. Olson suggests to check the coloring, source data and presentation to not get duped into thinking the wrong thing. Why would someone want to present data in a tricky way? What benefit would they gain from it? Are infographics really that powerful? What if I told you that you could get most of the information I presented in the infographic below? Would you have read all of this text if I didn’t have a picture?


Infographic: Why Infographics Work – Travel Media


5 thoughts on “Read All This Text… *Gehron*

  1. Very well put. I would agree that people do tend to trust infographics more. While I did read the whole text I must admit that I found my eyes wondering towards the picture. Even though I know I should take them with a grain of salt it really is just so easy to look at the pretty picture. Its interesting too because letters are also simply pictures. In both forms we are decoding the data, one just goes a little faster.


  2. When glancing at this post, I first noticed the picture and the quote because they stand out from the rest of the text. People are always looking for shortcuts and ways to save them time, and one good way to do this is glancing at a picture. But it’s not just pictures, the quote you have also stands out and makes the reader feel as if they have a better understanding of your main points without actually reading the entire blog. So, I do think that infographics are that powerful. Not only do they relay information, but they also keep the audience engaged and interested in what you are saying.


  3. You were definately right that the infographic did provide all of the information you stated. It made more of an impression on me, because the facts are right there and I don’t have to read a whole lot. Pictures are without a doubt much more popular than just text. This would explain why my Facebook wall is probably 90% pictures. In this day of age, people don’t want to spend time reading a long text that’ll make them fall asleep, but they would rather look at an entertaining picture that they find interesting or funny.


  4. You really drove your point home when you made reading the post irrelevant with the infographic. Well done! I agree with the statistic that people remember a lot more of what they see than what they read, because at least for me it is true.


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