5 tips for “pitching” infographics

In case you haven’t noticed, infographics are exploding across the Web. And, more importantly, they’re increasingly seen as a valuable tool in a PR professional’s toolbox. But, how exactly do you use an infographic as a tool to achieve your company’s goals and objectives?

There are numerous ways to use these handy little graphics, but that’s a different topic for a different day. Today, I want to talk specifically about how you “pitch” them (for lack of a better term) as part of your blogger/infuencer outreach efforts.

I received a great “pitch” from Joe Chernov, vice president of content marketing for Eloqua a few weeks ago around their popular “Blog Tree” infographic. Joe’s pitch highlighted for me a number of best practices when making infographics a centerpiece of your outreach efforts:

First, make sure the infographic is relevant

Believe it or not, this isn’t a given. In this case, Joe was pitching me because my blog, Communications Conversations, was highlighted in the 2011 version of the Blog Tree. Here was the first line of his pitch:

“I am writing to let you know that Eloqua & JESS3 have featured the Communications Conversations blog in a new infographic, which we will publish on Wednesday at 9:00 a.m. ET. I am giving all of the featured bloggers a little head’s up now.”

Pretty relevant, right? Just make sure there’s an angle between your infographic and the blogger/influencer you’re pitching.

Give the blogger a few ideas based on your infographic data

This is the one tip Joe actually didn’t demonstrate in his pitch (not that he really needed to, in this case). But, it’a a key one. Throw out a few ideas to the blogger. Yes, you want them to brainstorm and use their own words in their posts, but it never hurts to help with the brainstorming process. Just be sure not to make it overly-self-promotional. I might suggest a handful of bullets with thought starters, for instance.

Make the infographic easy to use/insert into their blog

If you’re going to pitch an infographic, making it easy for blogger to plug into their own posts is absolutely key. After all, isn’t that the whole idea? So, attaching a PDF of the infographic isn’t the best idea. I can’t use that (at least not easily) in a post. Instead, make sure to include a link to the image, as Joe did in his post (see below) after you post it to your blog. Another option: Include a stand-alone jpg or gif of the infographic. By including the link though, you’re driving traffic to YOUR site, which is optimal. Bottom line: Just make it easy for bloggers–remember you want them to blog about the graphic and use it in their posts.

You can preview the infographic here: http://blog.eloqua.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/The-Blog-Tree-New-Growth.jpg

Make it about them–not you

Common blogger outreach best practice, but definitely not one that’s not always used. Start the pitch by talking about the blogger/influencer a bit more casually (a post you recently read, an event you heard them speak at, etc.). Then, start talking about how the infographic is relevant to the topics they talk about on their blog. You want to establish relevance early on.

Create your own post–make it shareable for others

Critical step in order to make your infographic a “shareable asset” for those influencers without publishing platforms (i.e., blogs) online. I’d suggest creating the post with the graphic at the same time as you starting reaching out to influencers. That way, you/they have options. Want to write a post and include the graphic? Great, here’s the embed code and/or a jpg. Want to merely share our post via Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn? Excellent, here’s a link to that post. Again, driving traffic to YOUR blog. You win either way–great third-party credibility if the blogger posts using the graphic. Great traffic to your blog if they share your post. Jon simply shared a link to his post in his pitch, and even provided guidance on a specific time the post would be live (see below).

“For linking purposes, my article on the story behind the infographic will be posted here: http://blog.eloqua.com/the-new-blog-tree/ on Wednesday a.m.”

Those are my thoughts. What about you? Do you have experience pitching infographics? If so, I’d love to hear your learnings/advice.

9 comments