Data is becoming a necessity to building a successful business in today’s economy. Any company that wants a competitive edge will need to have statistical data on their customers and business processes. We’re going to discuss how data visualization can help produce clarity.
Story telling is one of the most powerful ways we can get a point across in society. In a study conducted by Save the Children Foundation, college students were given an opportunity to donate. Half of the students received a letter with the story of one real person and the other half were told about statistics of multiple victims. Participants that were told about one real person donated over twice the amount of those that were told about a much larger problem, in statistical form. Story telling allows the audience whether it’s a client or business colleague to emotionally connect with the information being conveyed.
Thousand Word Picture
The famous quote “A picture is worth a thousand words” is more than a cliche statement. Using images to convey a message can serve as a powerful tool for explaining complex problems. When we’re in business meetings we tend to overlook the importance of finding simple ways to explain complex problems. The image displayed at the top of this article shows many things about this group’s interaction. Without diving into the details, you can see they’re enjoying the activity at hand. By creating powerful visuals to portray the message we can increase the overall understanding of our ideas.
Visuals Translate the Experience
Using visualizations can be a powerful way to translate data into a relatable experience. A study was conducted at a Hotel where they decided to create a description of room specs and bed size compared to a picture with a story of someone who recently stayed at the hotel. The group with the story and picture of the person produced five percent more value than the one without these details. Focusing on using a visual experience to translate your message will ultimately allow your team or customers to have a better understanding of your message.
If you have a company or participate in meetings that involve you translating data, I challenge you to use visuals to amplify the power of your message. Get creative with your message and find new ways to simplify complex information. As you improve your ability to visualize complex experiences, you’ll see the increase in clarity and performance of your team.
Alex Brooks is the founder and CEO of AE Brooks, LLC (d/b/a, Entreprov), a small Seattle-based firm that helps small and medium sized businesses increase their customer base and retain current customers through machine learning and business strategy.