The rapid development of technology and social media has meant that in the ongoing second decade of the 21st century, we are constantly being showered with all sorts of data (information) from all sides, and we often make important decisions (professional or personal) based on it. Not surprisingly, the business has also set its sights on using them. The issue of data analytics within various areas of business has been talked about for years, but recently this area has begun to play an increasingly important role in marketing or sales, especially within storytelling. What is data and visual storytelling and why should you get interested in this mode of presentation when thinking about the future of your company?
Data and visual storytelling – table of contents:
- What is data storytelling
- Visual data storytelling – why is it so important?
- Data stories – the future of business
What is data storytelling?
Have you ever thought about how data can convey a story? However, numbers and facts alone won’t do it – for data storytelling to occur, it is necessary to draw key conclusions from the information received, and then visualize them in a way that is captivating to the target audience. Thus, its application in day-to-day operations requires skills in various areas, such as data analysis (in terms of performing proper verification and conveying reliable conclusions), visualization (graphic sense and sense of aesthetics), and storytelling (good storytelling, i.e. finding connections between data to reach the recipient with words), among others.
Visual data storytelling – why is it so important?
Data storytelling adopt a narrative concept (concerning the past, present, or future of a specific domain) that is natural for any audience – due to listening to stories since childhood. For this reason, it is understandable to anyone: a company employee, end customer, business partner, or board member. With it, you can tell a story about any aspect of business operations. However, it is not such qualities that make its importance in the company’s operations constantly grow. For what reason will data and visual storytellers soon become indispensable in the labor market?
- Because we focus on minimalism and proper selection of information
- Because they influence decision-making
- Because data is forgotten and stories are not
A chart, a graphic or infographic, and a story prepared with data – that’s all it takes to pique the interest of a potential audience during a presentation or when creating social media messages. With the right visualization and storytelling, you can forget about presentations that are dozens of slides in length, which, despite being equipped with numerous specifics, fail to arouse interest, and what’s worse, can be confused with content prepared by others.
Nowadays, every recipient wants to get what is most important and interesting in the simplest form and in a short time, and effective storytelling about numbers, results, indicators, or facts significantly increases the persuasive power of the message. This is exactly the kind of opportunity of interest to both parties (brand and customer) that data storytelling provides.
It is clear that the human brain is divided into the right and left hemispheres, which complement each other. The right is responsible for creating and experiencing emotions, while the left is responsible for logical thinking, analytics, or noticing details. Not surprisingly, then, data storytelling, which appeals through data to the left hemisphere, and through a story that evokes emotion and stimulates creativity in the right hemisphere, is performing increasingly well. For success, one does not exist without the other – for this reason, we emphasize the persuasive power of a message created through data storytelling.
Detailed, specific, providing a basis for further action – it can be argued that such 3 most important characteristics describe data obtained in various ways and made available in reports, publications, or social media. However, there is no denying the fact that nowadays, when searching for various types of information, we only scroll the website or social media with our eyes, looking for something that will hold our gaze. Such an element can undoubtedly be a properly designed (in terms of choice of colors, fonts, arrangement of content, etc.) graphic creation that conveys data and conclusions that are interesting to the recipient.
If we want numbers or facts not to escape in the flurry of all the stimuli, we must undoubtedly bet on an unusual (yet) combination: stories about data together with exceptionally crafted visualization.
Data stories – the future of business
We have known for some time that storytelling is the key that can reach any customer group. At a time when it is becoming increasingly difficult to compete on price, quality, or quantity of advertising creations in various channels, it is necessary to apply tools that will enable you to reach “deeper” into the customer. It is for this reason that storytelling, based on properly visualized data, is the starting point of the actions taken for any entity that is struggling for its position in the market. Will you implement this type of action in your company or organization as well?