Most communicators have little or no background in visual storytelling.
Areas such as graphic design, videography and typography just don’t show up in a typical mass comms college curriculum. While hiring talent from the design side is one way to accelerate expertise in visual storytelling – and we’ve done this – it’s important that all PR practitioners bring a visual mentality to their craft.
Even our intern program now encourages newbies to experiment and cultivate their visual side.
When Erin Hartwig, one of our summer interns, decided to take a shot at writing a bylined post for PR Daily, we said, “Go for it.” When she mentioned she was keen to design an infographic to accompany the post, we added a second “Go for it,” though truth be told we were also thinking, “This should be interesting.”
Not only did PR Daily run her post, “Getting the most out of your summer PR internship,” but the infographic accompanied the narrative.
Embed this Infographic on Your Site:
<div align="center"><a href="http://www.ishmaelscorner.com/2013/07/16/intern-shows-visual-storytelling-chops-2" title="Intern Shows Visual Storytelling Chops"><img src="http://hawebpage.wpenginepowered.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/Intern-Infographic.jpg?utm_source=infographic&utm_medium=main&utm_campaign=infographic" alt="Infographic - tips for PR summer internship" style="border:none;" /></a><br /> <small>The Hoffman Agency is a public relations firm that emphasizes storytelling in <a href="http://www.hoffman.com">business communication</a></small>.</div>
This infographic offers another example that the platform doesn’t have to be limited to data visualization. With the exception of the chart on coffee consumption, the caricature of an intern and typography carry the visual storytelling.
I asked Erin what she considered the keys to developing her first infographic:
- Start by looking at other infographics to get a feel for potential structure, layout and color scheme. From this exercise, you can start to imagine an outline and flow for designing an infographic.
- There are excellent free tools to help non-designers build out an inforgraphic, ideal for at least producing the first draft.
She didn’t say it, but I would add a little bravery helps the cause.
P.S. In the spirit of full disclosure, our gifted graphic designer Samantha Lim polished Erin’s infographic into a final product.