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4 Benefits of Visual Communication

Everyone learns differently, and there are times when words just aren’t enough to get your point across. This is where visual communication comes in. Visual communication can happen through a simple photo or drawing, or through complex charts and other visual aids.

Visual communication is particularly important in a professional context, where getting your point across clearly is key. Whether you’re communicating with coworkers through internal messaging or communicating with customers through marketing content, visual aids are helpful. Here are four key benefits of visual communication to consider.

Facilitates Faster Communication

Human brains process images faster than they process text. In fact, some studies indicate that we process images at a rate that’s 60,000 times faster than the rate we process text. This is a massive difference and means that visual communication is often much more effective at getting the point across quickly.

This is particularly important in scenarios where time is limited. Using visual aids can get your point across in a few seconds, rather than taking minutes to explain the same concept. For example, say you’re looking to communicate a new technology concept to your coworkers. Use a screenshot app to capture and share the concepts visually, and you’ll get your point across right away. This is key in a busy work environment with tight deadlines.

Additionally, your team will be able to go back and quickly refer to the visual aid whenever they need it. There’s no need to remember a long conversation or re-read a long wall of text. In this way, visual aids continue to make communication faster on an ongoing basis.

Improves Accessibility

Using visual aids makes your communications more accessible for a wide range of people. Many aspects of visual communication transcend language. Visual aids like symbols and drawings are easy to understand, regardless of what language you speak, so they’re often used in multicultural environments.

This is particularly important when communicating safety information. This is why road signs and other public communications tend to rely heavily on visual aids. This increases accessibility and awareness for everyone, no matter what language they speak.

Visual aids are also very helpful for communicating with those of varying literacy levels. For example, images, charts, and symbols can be very helpful for communicating concepts to children who can’t read yet. Some adults also struggle with dyslexia or other learning disabilities that make reading difficult. Including visual aids makes your communications more inclusive for people of all ability levels.

Grabs Audience Attention

In a world where people are bombarded with information online, it’s difficult to capture an audience’s attention. This is particularly true when writing marketing communications. For things like blogs and email newsletters, you often have just a few seconds to make an impression before the reader scrolls away.

Implementing visual communication in your marketing is one of the most effective ways to get your audience engaged. If a busy reader opens your email newsletter and sees a wall of text, they’re likely to move on to something else. However, if you open with a fascinating infographic or a beautiful photograph, that could pique their curiosity and encourage them to read.

This principle also holds true with your internal work communications. Say you’re giving a presentation about an important new product. No matter how engaging your speaking style is, your audience is likely to get bored quickly if you don’t include visual aids. Adding visual multimedia elements will help keep your audience engaged the whole way through. You can even keep this in mind when sending emails. Including a simple graphic to illustrate your point can help you get a response more quickly.

Improves Information Retention

Using visual communication can actually help your audience retain the information more effectively. Scientific research indicates that people remember much more of what they see than what they read or hear in many cases. This is particularly true for those who have a natural visual learning style.

Individuals are exposed to such a huge range of information online these days through the internet and social media. The sheer volume of information available can make it difficult to remember the things you’ve read. Adding visual aids like photos, videos, or charts can make written communication more memorable.

This is why illustrations, charts, and photos are used heavily in textbooks and in classrooms. Many students also use visual aids as part of their study process. This helps them process and retain large volumes of information more effectively.

Ways to Use Visual Communication

There are so many ways to use visual communication in a professional setting. Here are some scenarios where visual aids can be very helpful.

  • Marketing communications: Adding visuals to your blogs, infographics, and social media posts will help you engage your readers more effectively. Things like branded infographics, photos, and videos are all great ways to supplement your marketing strategy.
  • Employee training: Visual aids can help new hires understand important concepts more quickly than reading text alone. Visual communication is also helpful for ongoing training on new technology concepts.
  • Presenting ideas: Have a concept for a new product, service, or process you want to share with your team? Including a visual aid in your presentation can instantly make it look more professional.
  • Providing feedback: Visual communication is also very helpful for providing feedback. With visual aids, you can illustrate things that went well and things that need improvement. You can also demonstrate exactly how an employee’s work should be improved.
  • Engaging an international audience: If you’re looking to grow your audience internationally, visual communication tools can help you communicate with them more effectively despite language barriers.

Final Thoughts

Visual communication is a tool that people rely on heavily throughout their daily lives, whether you realize it or not. Proactively using visual aids in your communication can help you build better connections with your audience. It’s also a way to make your communications more accessible and inclusive. If you’re looking to get your point across more quickly, try making visual aids to support it.

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