The Power of Data Visualisation and How to Use it to Your Advantage in Your Presentations

Data is a powerful tool. It can be used to tell stories, persuade people, and connect with your audience. But it’s not always easy to understand or communicate effectively.

So, let’s take a deep dive into data visualisation…

What is data visualisation?

Data visualisation is the graphical display of information or data and can take many forms, including charts, maps, interactive dashboards, and infographics. Frequently used to communicate complex information quickly and clearly using custom-designed graphics.

Five advantages of using data visualisation in your presentation

One great power of Data Visualisation is to connect with an audience emotionally, making abstract data easier for them to understand. It can make complexities (like the size of data, or its speed) tangible.

Badly presented data can leave your audience scratching their heads and spending their precious attention trying to decipher your charts. However, used correctly data visualisation can be a powerful tool for bringing your story to life. Put simply, the key benefits are:

1) Data graphics, such as bar and pie charts can be more interesting for audiences than text alone.

2) They make it easier to understand the presentation if you do not have time to read it all, or if there is a lot of dense material.

3) They increase understanding, as they simplify numerical data with visual overviews. As a result, the audience can digest data in the fastest way. Ultimately, speeding up the decision-making process.

4) They help in getting your point across quickly, making the presentation more engaging and focused on key information.

So, how can you ensure that you are using data visualisation effectively to support your message, and not confusing your audience or readers with hard-to-interpret charts? Here are a couple of our top tips:

Group looking at computer together
  1. Start with the message

The first step to effective data visualisation is to decide the ONE key message you want your visualisation to convey. Usually this will be the same as the heading on your slide or the section title in your document. By deciding your message first, you can ensure that every subsequent choice you make is in support of that message.

  1. Remove anything unnecessary! Strip it all back!

When you have lots of interesting data, it can be tempting to add it all onto the page at the same time. Remember that your audience will likely be seeing this data for the first time and may have to take some time to understand it, unless you make things very easy for them.

Remember to remove anything that is not directly contributing to the point that you're making. By cleansing unnecessary embellishments based on things like labels, you’re avoiding looking cluttered. Often, the reader does not need to know the exact values for every data point – cutting it down to the one or two data points that you want to highlight can help emphasise your point and keep the visualisation focused.

  1. Add highlights

Once you have stripped your data visualisation back to the key message, you can further emphasise the bits that are important, for example, with highlighting.

Something that we have covered in more detail in another blog, here, is the impact colour plays on the audience. Specifically, the types of colours and the psychologies behind them. So, it’s essential you assess the colours you choose to use in your presentation. Read our recent blog to learn more!

Communicate with impact, so that the message sticks!

Know what your one key message is that you’re trying to draw out, the rest will follow.  Forget being super creative, get the basics right first and convey your point.

If you’re struggling to condense your data down, there are ways to tackle this and get your message across effectively. With Imitor Graphica, you can turn complex data into visualisations that will help your audience see what they need to know, clearly, in order to make better decisions for their business.

We get it – we’re here to help you create engaging visuals, that will get your message across clearly and quickly - so you can spend more time on the things that really matter.

We’re the experts in manipulating the complex to become intuitive. Email info@imitorgraphica.com to find out more.