Building a Better Brand Through Data-Driven Social Visuals

Opinion: Infographics are liked and shared three times more than any other type of content

Data visuals help bolster your business in three key areas PetrStransky/iStock

Did you know that immunization could help prevent 36 million deaths and also stop 24 million people from slipping into extreme poverty? Powerful statistics can help provide the necessary context to inspire action and change. These particular stats were shared by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation on Twitter, and by using a bite-sized content format, the foundation was able to reach a much wider and much more engaged audience.

The interconnectivity of social media has made important stats around global issues, science, health, business and technology more accessible than ever—data is no longer relegated to the realm of data analysts and data scientists. According to HubSpot, infographics are liked and shared on social three times more than any other type of content.

Beyond social engagement, data visuals help bolster your business in three key areas:

Establish brand leadership

Banish marketing jargon from your content. When you share charts on social, you’re showing that you make business decisions based on data instead of empty buzzwords. By letting the numbers speak for themselves, you can inspire customer confidence in your ability to deliver a better product or service than your competitors. Be proud of the stats that drive your brand, and your audience will be, too.

Example: Intercom builds modern messaging products for sales, marketing and support. It conducted an analysis of emails sent in Intercom to determine what makes a successful subject line. The company published a long-form blog post and teased out key takeaways on social media. The Facebook post below is designed to show their readers that Intercom cares about their success, and it proves that the company understands the importance of data analysis and visual communication.

Build trust

Anyone can claim that their product or service is better than those of their competitors, but can they prove it? Social media in particular is full of misleading claims. You can’t expect your audience to believe your messaging at face value. Instead, you need to earn their trust. Pulling relevant data from credible sources gives your brand a sense of transparency and also lets your customers know that you’re more rooted in facts than fluff.

Example: In honor of Equal Pay Day, social media scheduling tool Buffer decided to conduct an internal pay analysis and publish the results in full.

Buffer is known for its efforts to remain fully transparent, and all of its employee salaries and its salary calculator formula are available to the public. It consistently shares important company data on social media, establishing itself as a brand you can trust.

Drive action

Numbers represent reality: They have the power to illustrate trends, highlight issues and create a real sense of urgency. For example, if a company states that its product will “boost sales” while another company shares stats that show a 40 percent increase in closed deals, which do you think people would gravitate toward?

Using a combination of easily digestible facts, eye-catching visuals and the immense reach of social media can motivate your audience to take action.

Example: The Gates Foundation and World Health Organization are working together to promote global health, increase vaccinations and stop the spread of infectious diseases. This tweet provides a visually engaging statistic paired with hashtags they are using to raise awareness for their cause, #vaccineswork and #healthforall. They are shedding light on an issue, drawing people in emotionally and creating a sense of urgency to get their audience to act.

Data needs to be a key part of your social media efforts. In addition to establishing your brand as a trusted leader in your field, you can also foster meaningful engagement across a wide audience. Add data visuals to your social media content and start seeing the results.

Stefanie Grossman is director of brand marketing at presentation creation platform Prezi.