You’ve probably heard the expression “a picture is worth 1,000 words.” That’s especially true on the internet, where illustrations can convey in one glance the type of information it might take 200 words to outline. Infographics have long been a hugely popular form of content marketing on the internet, but over the past few years motion graphics have become a web favorite as well. Is one better than the other? That may depend on what your aim is with your graphic.
The Advantages of Motion Graphics
The biggest advantage of motion graphics is, of course, the motion. It catches the eye quickly and can include elements of online video, which is red hot right now online. Motion graphics allow you a chance to deliver words and images with impact, because you control when and where the most important parts of your argument pop up on screen.
For instance, if you’re an SEO company making a pitch to a client, you can lay out the reasons why your strategy will work and reveal the kicker slowly at the end with a moving graphic. This ensures that the eyes of whoever is watching are drawn exactly where you want them, to the most important piece of information. Other advantages of motion graphics include the ability to convey emotional pull through video and favorable search engine rankings.
The Advantages of Infographics
Infographics have been around since long before they began popping up online. They’re a great way to illustrate a central point, engaging to the eye because of their different shapes and colors. Infographics are most often used to crystallize a point. Put in the simplest of terms, it’s easier to understand the difference between 2 and 10 when you see 2 circles on one side and 10 on the other.
Of course, most infographics are far more sophisticated, but it’s that simple idea of storytelling that drives them. With illustration rather than animation, infographics are easier to produce than motion graphics. They also help make a sharper point than simple words. It’s nearly impossible to misinterpret the data in an infographic, while data conveyed in a heap of words can be difficult to fully grasp.
Are Motion Graphics More Engaging?
There are no credible studies that compare the engagement of infographics versus motion graphics. However, a recent report from Forrester Research found that web surfers are likely to compare online content with that produced for movies, video games or television shows. For that reason, motion graphics tend to stand out, because they have the sort of visual elements that people are already familiar with through major entertainment outlets.
The Bottom Line
So which are better, infographics or motion graphics? The answer depends on what you’re trying to convey. If you are more interested in changing someone’s way of thinking, a motion graphic is more engaging and thus more likely to convince people of your point. But if you’re simply hoping to disseminate cold, hard facts, infographics are your best bet. They’re straightforward, you can make better comparisons between two factoids, and they’re much easier to manufacture.
Photo credit: Motion Mojo