The lead-generation websites for for-profits have used infographics to increase the number of links and social shares as part of their marketing strategy for several months. And, this is “linkbait” strategy has been VERY successful with many mentions in Mashable (including this recent article on how higher ed institutions use social media).
I’ve already said on this blog, that it would make a lot of sense for the non-profit institutions to use infographics in the same way. So, yesterday, when I got pitched by email about the infographic University College, the college of professional and continuing studies at the University of Denver, created to promote its new degree and certificate in new media and internet marketing, I HAD to find out more about the strategy behind this piece of infographics.
Victoria Harben, Content Manager at UD University College, was kind enough to answer my questions via email.
1) Can you tell us why your institution decided to use infographics? What are your marketing goals?
Infographics are sweeping the web as a concise, visual exploration of trends and statistics—ideal for quickly conveying an overall shift in a specific area. Internet marketing has grown dramatically in the last few years and to really capture this shift and the most eye-opening statistics, we wanted to develop a quick reference tool for those interested in this professional area. Between the industry trends and the career possibilities (shown through the top skills needed and the potential job titles/salaries), the infographic tells the story of how the marketing industry is shifting and how to get on board.
The marketing goals with the infographic are two-fold: to promote awareness of the new degree/certificate program and to illustrate the rising importance of this area of study.
2) Is it central to your online marketing strategy for this degree/certificate?
The infographic is simply a component of the overall marketing efforts being put forth, which include online advertising and traditional marketing strategies. It’s a unique and eye-catching way to present the information to prospective students, who presumably are adept at marketing tactics in the first place.
3) How will you measure its success?
We’re aiming for buzz, brand awareness, and increased visits to our program page. Because an infographic doesn’t typically link anywhere (unless it is embedded in a blog using the provided code, for instance), it’s difficult to measure the click-through rate.
4) Can you walk us through the design process? How long did it take to develop?
Developing the infographic started with a discussion about what story we wanted to tell and what information we needed to convey. We reviewed other examples of successful infographics and then research for trends and specific statistics took about a week to compile via websites, articles, reports, databases, etc. Creation of the infographic itself took less than a day to design in Photoshop and posting to the University College blog with commentary.