I’d assume that it’s safe to say that everyone who reads this blog loves two things: the internet and images. We are all here because we love graphics, love data and are constantly on the internet. Today’s infographic is all about what we love most. Images on the internet!
Images have gotten better. Image quality has increased all over the internet. Increased image quality and an increase of images per article increases views and aids in searchability. Various new-ish aps and websites aid in the promenance of images. Pinterest boasts inspiring fashion, food and decor photos, earning swoons across America. Facebook allows users to upload photos of their friends family and fun times. Instagram, which we all know i love, gives even the most novice of photographers an opportnity to publish their own photos.
Images are beautiful and allow inspiration. Horray for the image revolution! [Via]
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Today’s marketing world is increasingly visual. No matter how great your product or content is, it won’t get noticed if it doesn’t have stunning visuals to accompany it. Luckily, there has been a surge in affordable graphic design services.
Whether you need a logo, infographic, website layout, brochure, or something unique, these platforms are great places to go for graphic design services on a budget.
If you still haven’t heard of Fiverr, then you are missing out on a platform for finding dirt-cheap graphic design services. Yes, a lot of the services actually do cost just five dollars – especially jobs like logos, business cards, and simple banner ads.
For anything more time-intensive or creatively demanding, you’ll need to pay more than five dollars. Most sellers offer a variety of options and add-ons (such as paying extra for more revisions or certain file formats). You save money by paying only for the design services you actually need.
Even the “expensive” graphic designers on Fiverr can be relatively cheap, since the platform taps into global talent. You can typically find a professional quality logo, brochure, banner, book cover, or even custom illustration for under $50. The platform has more of a product focus, where design services are offered with a focus on the product and the price, for example “$20 professional logo”. As a result many of the freelancers operate under screen names and you’re often not sure of the identity of the person hired.
*Be wary of any graphic designer that seems too good to be true. It’s impossible to completely verify the freelancer’s portfolios showing examples of their work. Since gigs are cheap, it is also easy for service providers to build up fake positive reviews. Luckily, Fiverr has a dispute policy and money can sometimes be refunded when the work is not up to par.
Formally known as Elance, Upwork is one of the largest platforms of freelancers marketing their services. As expected, there are plenty of affordable graphic design services to be found.
Using Upwork is fairly simple. You create a public job, set the budget, and wait for freelancers to apply. Or, you can create a private job and invite only selected freelancers to apply. Either way, you’ll have a large pool of candidates.
Upwork has a freelancer based focus, as opposed to a product based like Fiverr. Real names are used and Upwork may required identity document verification. Freelancers upload work to their portfolio and even have tests to prove skill knowledge. You may still have to weed through lower quality freelancers, but Upwork also has a “job success score” that helps to rate freelancers based on past work.
The reviews on Upwork tend to be more reliable. Especially if project costs are higher, it would be costly for a freelancer to get friends to write fake reviews. You can also check the history of the reviewer, which means it is easier to spot fakes.
Hiring a graphic designer online can take a long time. You first need to narrow down the candidates, and after hiring spend time communicating with the designer to make sure the parameters are understood. For simple jobs it might make sense to just do the work yourself.
PicMonkey is a good solution for people who want to take a DIY approach to graphic design, but are intimidated by Photoshop.
You won’t be able to create stunning logos or visuals from scratch with PicMonkey. However, the service does allow you to easily touch up existing photos, make collages, create album covers, and create social media ads using templates.
The platform is heavily marketed towards small business websites and bloggers, particularly ones who want to expand their social media presence without having to add an additional member to their staff.
Canva is a popular design tool that’s free and easy to use without any design experience. The site offers templates and is popular among bloggers, content marketers, small business owners alike. Designed for work, school, and play, it even offers design tips for non-designers.
The interface is intuitive and easy for anyone to use. Whether it’s creating presentations, magazine covers or simple marketing materials, you can create beautiful graphics with the provided layouts. Even for designing mockups this would be a great place to start.
For more efficient teamwork, Canva offers a paid service called Canva At Work which allows integration with several team members.
Design Pickle offers an innovative flat rate approach to affordable graphic design services. Instead of charging you on a per-project basis, they offer unlimited graphic design services for a flat monthly fee. They were created for the average non-creative small business.
After signing up for the service, you are matched with a graphic designer who will be primarily responsible for your designs. They’ve pre selected a team of designers trained for high volume work. If that designer goes on leave, another one will fill in, ensuring on call design services.
While you do get unlimited work each month for the fixed price, the jobs are queued up in your dashboard. You set which ones have priority and these are done first. Turnaround depends on the total request volume and complexity.
The service fits people who can answer yes to the following question: “Can I reasonably explain or show what I want in an email?” If you have an eye for design and know exactly what you want, or you only need simple tasks done regularly, you may find these services valuable.
While some platforms are better for certain types of design work, it is ultimately about how you use the platform.
Whether you want to use one of the affordable design services listed above or another, make sure you follow these tips.
Don’t think you can ask for a “design for XYZ industry” and get great results. For graphic designers to succeed, they need details about what you want.
This doesn’t mean you necessarily have to give details about color psychology and contrast ratios. However, you should include in your project description:
Finding a good quality, affordable graphic designer can consume a lot of your time. So, when you do find one, you don’t want to let him or her go. That is why it is so crucial to look for long-term relationships.
How can you tell if a graphic designer is interested in long-term working relationships? Look for:
It might seem counterintuitive to pay more than necessary within a competitive market. But once you’ve invested in a freelance hire, monetary incentives can often pave the way for a more productive relationship. As with most employees, designers enjoy being rewarded for consistent work that exceeds your expectations.
What are your favorite sources for affordable design work?
In today’s world of digital marketing, an infographic can be defined as a graphic visual that translates complex information quickly, clearly and in an engaging way.
As a business owner, you probably already know many of the reasons why your business needs infographics. Some of the convincing stats about why you need infographics floating around the web include:
Stats like these are part of the reason that infographics gained popularity among marketers. However, many of these statistics date back to 2014 and before. With so many infographics flooding the scene, businesses may be wondering whether infographics are still effective or not.
Yes, infographics are still effective!
Here are just some of the reasons your business needs infographics as part of a marketing plan in 2018 and beyond.
Creating content uses up a lot of your business’s resources, so you want to make sure each piece of content gets maximum usage. Infographics can offer a great ROI because they work across multiple platforms including:
Marketers have talked about how traditional whitepapers are a relic of the past. While we still need whitepapers, no one is interested in reading multiple pages on complex data. Customers and clients want information quickly and in a straightforward way.
Infographic whitepapers are a solution to the dead whitepaper. The infographic shown above was used in a white paper released by the UK government. Visualizations like these help strike the right balance between entertaining and informing, plus building brand collateral in the process.
One of the reasons that infographics became so popular with marketers is because they are great for organic link building. All you need to do is include an embed code with your infographic. When other websites use your infographic on their sites, you get a natural link to your desired page.
Infographics can also indirectly improve SEO because they do so well on social media. While social media isn’t a direct ranking factor, social matters for SEO: The top-ranked pages in Google have vastly more social signals than other pages.
We live in a society where fake news is shouted from the rooftops. It might seem like statistics don’t matter in this world where people make decisions based on emotions and gut feelings. However, as The Guardian points out, this has actually created an opportunity for data.
Individuals trying to “work out what is really going on” are hungry for data so they can make informed decisions. Infographics are a great way to provide this data to your audience.
Note: It’s important that your infographic data actually be correct to get this benefit! Make sure that you do your research, aren’t cherry-picking data, and cite sources. Otherwise you’ll end up like these misleading infographics.
If you need a reason why to use infographics for your small business, it is this. You can visit websites like Daily Infographic or Visual.ly, search for infographics in your industry, and then share them in blog posts or on social media.
It doesn’t matter that your brand didn’t create the infographic. By sharing an infographic which is useful to your audience, you position yourself as an expert and gain the trust of customers.
Of course, it is still best to create your own infographic with a unique story and branding. However, if your business budget can’t afford a design team, you can still share worthy infographics from the web.
For B2B brands, the “About Page” is one of the most important pages on the website. Including infographics is a great way to get the message across while showcasing the personality of your business. This has been done excellently by brands like Moz, AirBnB, The Vehicle Group, and Visionaire.
A lot of About Us pages also contain employee profiles. These profiles are great at increasing your conversions because potential customers find it easier to connect with real human beings.
Take a cue from the new trend of infographic resumes and put employee profiles in infographic form instead of the standard, formal (read: boring) template. This helps the humanity behind your business shine through in a trendy, engaging manner.
As Lucid Press points out, consumers aren’t just exposed to loads of content, they are exposed to competing brand messages all at once. If your brand isn’t able to keep consumers focused on your message, you risk losing them.
Visual stimulation is critical to keeping consumers focused on your message in these ways:
So take a look through your website and other marketing platforms. How visually stimulating are they? If your website fails to deliver on the eye-candy, then your business needs infographics.
In April of 2017, Pinterest had 175 million active users. By September, that number had grown to 200 million (Source). There’s no denying the importance of Pinterest as part of a comprehensive marketing strategy.
Your business needs infographics as part of its Pinterest strategy as a way to stand out. And, with the vertical image layout, scannability, and optimal pin size (which is approximately 735 x 1102px), Pinterest feed is set up for infographic success.
Tip: Make sure the font on your infographic is legible on the Pinterest home feed, including when viewed on mobile.
In today’s digital world, you’ve only got 7 seconds to grab consumers’ attention. How are you supposed to do this when you have complex information to convey?
Practices like including headings and bullet points to make it more scannable are important for text content. In fact readers tend to stick around longer to read text that accompanies infographic. However, nothing beats infographics for making complex info digestible.
You can still keep your long-form content (and should!) but supplementing it with an infographic is a great way to ensure all users – including those crunched for time – are satisfied.
Let’s face it. If your content plan consists only of blog posts (or reports, videos, product images, etc.), your users are going to get bored.
To keep users engaged and coming back for more content, you need to offer them variety. Infographics shouldn’t be the only type of content on your website and marketing channels, but they should definitely be a part of the overall plan!
How do you use infographics in your business?
“Infographic Resume” (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) by Devign Elements
“Growing Social Media” (CC BY 2.0) by mkhmarketing
“Infographic: Geological disposal: Making” (CC BY-ND 2.0) by DECCgovuk
“1.17% of the UK” (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) by DimitraTzanos
“circlescape” (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) by Zeptonn
“Search Engines Love Content by Go Local” (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) by Go Local Search
“pinterest_infographic” (CC BY-ND 2.0) by Stefan Leijon
“Cover Infographics” (CC BY-ND 2.0) by Stefan Leijon
“mesmerized by numbers” (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) by hsingy
“Linkedin maps data visualization” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by luc legay
Do you ever go a day without listening to some type of music? You probably don’t, and that’s because music is all around us. We hear it in stores, coming from car stereos, and of course our own headphones! Music transcends time and cultures and finds its way into all of our lives. Pretty cool, right?
Despite its presence in our lives, there’s still a lot we don’t understand about the effects of music on our minds and bodies. For example, why does your voice sound so different on recordings? Are you really tone deaf? Scientists have come up with some theories to explain these and other musical phenomena.
It happens to all of us, out of the blue a song pops in our head and it’s stuck there on repeat. Maybe the chorus really is just that catchy, but it’s also a phenomenon called earworms. Luckily these aren’t literal worms, just a term that refers to songs that get stuck in your brain. It’s difficult to say for sure why this happens, but some researchers have concluded that it comes from listening to a song many, many times. The interesting part is, it doesn’t have to be a song you’ve listened to recently.
Songs played on the radio are the most common earworms, since we hear them often. They typically pop into our heads when we’re doing something mindless or routine. One researcher found that people often have positive emotions after having an earworm and when asked to sing it back, what they sing is almost exactly like the original. Perhaps the purpose of earworms is to help our memory and make us happy?
Most people would agree, the sound of their own voice is just not pleasant. Few people listen to a recording of their own voice without asking, is that really me? Studies have shown, this has to do with the way we hear. Sound is carried along two paths, and when we speak we hear the sound that comes from our vocal chords up to our ear. When we hear a recording of our voice, that “normal” sound we hear is gone and what is left is the sound that travels through the air back to our ears.
Good news! Just because you may be bad at singing doesn’t mean you are actually, in fact, tone deaf. Amusia is the technical term for tone deafness and it actually only occurs in 1 out of every 20 people. For most people, the ability to process sound and match pitch and rhythm can be learned with musical training. Maybe some singing lessons are in your future?
Have you ever been in a group listening to music and everyone is snapping or clapping along to the beat but there’s that one person who just cannot keep the rhythm? This is an actual scientific condition called being “beat deaf”. While many people may have some trouble matching a beat, very few are actually beat deaf. These people have no problem clapping or snapping when there’s no sound, but the problem is presented when they try to synchronize with a sound such as music. This inability to remain on beat with music may have to do with their own internal rhythms.
Some songs, or parts of a song, will give you goosebumps, or chills. Why does this happen when listening to music? This phenomena, called musical frisson, is due to the pleasure that comes from hearing music and the release of dopamine. Scientists have found that it can even happen when the pleasure is anticipated. This explains why music, which has no survival value, is so important to human society.
The title or first few notes of a song can bring back strong memories or feelings. It has long been recognized that music is tied to memories and though it is very difficult to say exactly why this happens, studies have shown that listening to music does bring back feelings of nostalgia or takes us back to a specific time and place. This could be because music triggers our conscious and unconscious memory. Songs of a particular era remind us of what we did during those times, or a certain artist reminds us of an old relationship, possibly because music is quite literally the soundtrack of our lives. Psychologists are now discovering how to help patients with Alzheimer’s and dementia by using music to assist their memory.
For the vast majority of people, music is a legal performance enhancer. It helps them exercise harder, longer, and faster. This could be due to the fact that music acts as a distraction from the pain and fatigue you’re experiencing. Most people naturally move to a beat and keep up with the tempo. This is why the majority of workout playlists are comprised of high energy, uptempo songs. Moving rhythmically to the beat can even help conserve energy.
It’s no surprise that upbeat music can enhance our mood, but why then do we also enjoy listening to sad songs? Much like venting, research has shown that listening to sad music helps us release the emotional sadness and distress we may be feeling. We also experience the above-mentioned musical frisson more often with sad songs due to the release of prolactin and oxytocin, which are bonding and nurturing chemicals. In effect, listening to sad music can actually help us regain our positive and happy mood.
You’ve probably experienced one if not all of these musical phenomena, and now you have an idea of why they happen! Whatever genre is your favorite, whatever artist takes you back to your favorite summer in high school, or whatever song gets stuck in your head, the connections we have with music are deeper and more amazing than we even thought!
After hours of staring at visuals on the web, it’d be nice to have a few pieces to look at on the wall. Decorate your room, fill up that blank wall, or just put up a handy guide for regular consumption. We’ve found a few interesting infographic posters that’ll spice up your wall!
What a web of whiskey can be woven! This chart breaks down the many types of whiskey you can line your bar with in”a spirited taxonomy of the ultimate amber elixir”.
Kitchen related infographic posters easily make our list of favorites – timeless, useful, and alluring all at once.
75 Myths that have been debunked, ranging from bats are blind, we use only 10% of our brain, to you can see the Great Wall of China from space. Gotcha already?
59 illustrated facts about the illustrious San Francisco. Detailed facts can be viewed here
A comprehensive diagram of beers with recommended types and drinkware. For the barroom, bedroom, anywhere you’d like to think about beer.
There are now 7.5 billion people in the world but it’s a bit easier to represent them as 100 people.
A visual guide to the heights and lengths of mountains and rivers in Europe from the Victorian era.
A tremendous chart of every cosmic exploration from the Luna 2 in 1959 to the Dscovr in 2015.
Kids are like sponges, sopping up the information all around them. This poster is a fun and savvy introduction to both animals and professions! The Wolf Web Designer? Right on! You can even tell your kids this was printed with vegetable ink.
25 cocktail recipes you might need in your Friday night arsenal. This tribute showcases ingredients and scaled recipes as well as how the drink is typically garnished.
When non-Americans ask about our political system, I prefer to send them this poster. We’d written about it here.
Orcas, commonly known as Killer Whales, are majestic animals with no natural predators. For the orcaholic or orcaphile.
64 famous guitars from 75 years of rock and roll history.
A primer on how startup funding works, going from the founders to a (hopeful) exit.
As children we were encouraged to learn something new every day. We did experiments at school, took part in extra-curricular activities, and joined cultural and activist groups during our college years.
Then something happened:
Benedict Carey, author of the book How We Learn, says that routine limits our brain’s ability to learn new skills and knowledge. This is worrisome because learning new things is important for our happiness.
You may have heard that the “brain is like a muscle.” Just like other muscles, you have to exercise the brain by learning new things. Yes, there is ample research which shows that learning helps build neuron connections and can stave off diseases like Parkinson’s. But there is a lot more to learning new things than just making the brain stronger. The act of learning actually makes us happier.
As Belle Beth Cooper writes about in her post on “Why New Things Make Us Feel So Good”, there is a section in the brain known as the SN/VTA.
The SN/VTA part of the brain is linked to the learning and memory parts, but it is best known as the “novelty center” because it lights up when exposed to new stimuli. You experience a rush of dopamine, which is one of the chemicals that motivates us towards rewards.
Here is what happens:
It is no surprise then that research has found dopamine is closely linked to the learning process. In short, learning new things stimulates happiness chemicals brain.
Learning can be broken down into short-term and long-term learning. If you don’t necessarily want to embark on a big endeavor (such as learning to play an instrument), your brain can still benefit from learning smaller bits of information on a daily basis. Here are some ways to do that.
No brainer right? Humans process visuals quickly: It takes less than 1/10 of a second for your brain to get a sense of a visual. Absorbing new information using infographics is a quick and easy way to learn. Visual learning not only decreases comprehension time, but sticks around longer in our memories. On Daily Infographic you can spend 15 minutes per day perusing an infographic on a topic of your choice.
Ted Talks are famous for bringing a huge amount of topics by innovative thinkers. Ted Ed takes learning a step further with engaging video lessons. Topics range from “the scientific way to cut a cake” to “how money laundering works.”
Americans are notoriously bad at geography, but the rest of the world probably isn’t too much better. The game GeoGuessr takes a unique approach to learning geography. You are shown a Google Maps photo and have to guess where it is. You might just find yourself saying things like, “Huh, I didn’t know that Afghanistan has such green forests!” It’s free to play.
Brought to you by scientists and game developers, Lumosity has a great collection of cognitive games you can play. You might not learn a concrete fact, but your brain will be challenged and grow!
Curiosity is a website which inspires people to get smarter. They do it by finding the most interesting news on a variety of topics. Just click what topic you are interested in learning about and you’ll find fascinating articles and videos.
Ready to take on a bigger challenge? Learning new skills that require a longer-term commitment can be even more rewarding and stimulating for the brain. Every day, you build on what you learned the day before until you reach a level of mastery. Here are just some ideas of things you can start learning and where to start.
Not sure what you want to learn today? Just visit Instructables and view any one of the great DIY tutorials to learn a new skill.
First aid is something that everyone should know and refresh regularly. The American Red Cross has come up with a great app to help. It isn’t a substitute for an in-person course, but it does have bite-size courses on basics accompanied by videos and instructions.
Duolingo is an app which makes it easy to learn a new language thanks to its interactive method and how it breaks down lessons into small chunks. There are dozens of languages to choose from and the app is free to use!
Writing is fundamental cornerstone of communication and remains one of the most in-demand skills that employers look for. The app 750 Words helps you become a better writer by having you write a minimum of 750 words of stream of conscious writing per day – a practice which is said to improve writing fluency and also help you learn about yourself in the process.
Udacity is one of the most popular places to learn coding for free. They have videos, quizzes, and instructions so you can earn a “Nanodegree.” The courses are made by expert programmers and big companies like Google so they are definitely relevant to today’s job market and tech trends.
A large vocabulary is not only impressive, but it allows you to express yourself better. Remember the book 1984 and how they started cutting words from the language as a form of mind control? Well, that’s the power of vocab! The website Vocabulary.com has come up with an adaptive learning game to help you learn more words easily.
On Udemy, you can find over 55,000 online courses on topics ranging from web development to music training. Many basic level classes are free but there are paid courses as well.
All small business owners and entrepreneurs need to know digital marketing techniques if they are going to stay relevant. Created by Google, Primer teaches marketing skills and delivers them in digestible 5-minute segments.
Coursera is one of the best places to find free online courses in higher education on just about any topic. The courses are offered by top universities in the US, helping you to extend your education from the comforts of your own home. Certificates are available for a fee. As an alternative, Iversity.org provides development courses from experts all over Europe. usually on very specific topics.
Today’s top companies aren’t just looking for skills like coding. They want people with soft skills like leadership, team management, creativity, and decision-making. MindTools has a great collection of mini courses which teach you these skills.
Gratitude is key for happiness in life. What a lot of people don’t realize is that gratitude actually has to be learned and worked on. The app Mojo helps you rewire your brain to be more grateful by encouraging you to write at least five good things per day, rate the day, and add photos.
It doesn’t have to be 15 minutes a day that you dedicate to learning something new. It could be 30 minutes, one hour, or even as little as 5 minutes per day. What matters is that you:
The reason the time-frame unit is so important is because people are more likely to stay motivated and succeed if they break goals into smaller units.
Using these tools to learn something new every day is a great start. But the reality is that we are already bombarded with information on a daily basis.
According to Niklas Goeke, we consume 74.92 gigabytes of data every day. That’s enough to fill 9 DVDs with data – or 74 pickup trucks filled with paper!
All of the information we consume isn’t helping us achieve happiness or wellbeing in life. Instead, excessive info consumption drains us and fries our brains.
Of course, most of this info consumption is done during our (brain-killing) routines. Simply by breaking routine and making a point to learn new things is going to help you retain and utilize the info better.
But, to really reap the life-changing benefits of learning new things, follow this one important tip:
Share what you’ve learned with others.
It can be on a daily learning blog. Or on social media. Or just make a point to tell your spouse what you’ve learned that day while you eat dinner together.
To reinforce your skills, utilizing specific techniques can help you learn faster. These include testing yourself regularly, finding ways to gain practical experience, rewarding yourself, and teaching others.
It may be difficult to find all that time. But the simple act of sharing your new knowledge and insight will help it stick and make the benefits of learning even more life changing.