Data Visualization

Decoding the Human Brain with Interactive Data Visualization

DNA style cartoon image

It’s not difficult to determine what interactive data visualization is. When you log into Twitter, check your flight schedule, look up the latest polling numbers, or even turn on your television today, you’re using interactive data visualization.

And the reason you see it more and more, everywhere you go, is because it works, and it sells. Today, over 10 million videos are being viewed daily, and Cisco estimates that 82 % of Internet traffic in 2021 will be video-based or using data visualization methods.

When you see something and then buy something, book something, or use something you’re saying to the brand, interactive data visualization works. Constructively using big data is a leading way for professionals to excel in their industry.

Discover how to bring this magic to your boardroom with this simple guide on how to decode the human brain with interactive data visualization, and a lovely cup of tea.

Why Use Interactive Data Visualization?

We use it because it works. Time and time again. Or so the big data tells us.

Interactive data visualization is simply the process of putting data together in a package that is understandable to the user or reader. On the Internet, you might see it in the form of an infographic.

When you go to the bank, you might see a big poster displaying a portfolio of options through easy to read images. Or you might see a breakdown of the customers and businesses enjoying the bank’s products and services.

Data visualization is useful in marketing because every piece of data is the output of human behavior or action. So we can use data to make decisions.

At the individual level, we use data to make purchasing decisions or decisions about our family. At a business level, we use big data to make decisions about marketing or how to provide products and services.

A number on a piece of paper is an abstract concept. But when we turn that data into interactive data visualization, we get a human story that we can use to make choices.

We use two different parts of the brain for this.

To see something, we use the visual cortex, which resides at the back of our brain. To understand something or think about it, we use the cerebral cortex, which is in the front of our brains.

The visual cortex moves quickly, but the thinking one, not so much.

Data visualization brings these two cortexes together. You can see something and think about it at almost the same rate as just…seeing it.

Significant data works, and pulling that process together into a visual product is the process of data visualization.

Number Crunching Data Visualization

The reason interactive data visualization works is because of the rates at which our brain processes different sensations. It takes approximately 1/10 of a second to understand a photo, but reading 200 words takes approximately 60 seconds.

Not only do we process-visualizations faster, but we understand them with greater ease as well. Take a walk on anybody’s Twitter timeline and then quiz yourself a few minutes later on what you remember.

You will remember the posts with photos or videos more because that’s just the science of big data.

Social marketing gurus also tell us that infographics get more than 12 % traffic and over 200% more shares than a post without an image.

Photo content on its own is said to get 94% more impressions than content that does not have a relevant image. And on Twitter, a tweet with a picture gets 18% more conversions and 150% more retweets than those with an image.

The Memory and Data Visualization

As in the Twitter example above, memory also plays a role in how we decode interactive data visualization. There is a running consensus in science that our short-term memory is only able to hold about 7 pieces of information.

Those seven pieces stay in our minds for only a small amount of time. Soon after, though, they expire and are replaced by another piece of information. That number 7 is not set in stone either and varies from one person to the next. After all, we are each uniquely human and complex.

It could be 3 for one person, and 10 for another.

It’s something you need to keep in mind when creating data visualizations. You want something with imagery they will remember, but not too much to so to overload the brain.

But, if you include an emotional component to your interactive data visualization, then you won’t need to worry about how much storage is left in your consumer’s short-term memory bank.

Tell a Story

The key to getting around the short-term memory pickle is to tell a story in your interactive data visualization. We live in the technological revolution, and instant gratification is the currency that society lives and breathes.

This is not always so great from a marketing perspective. You want your message, and your brand remembered.

And it is not something that brands like Nike or Wal-Mart need to worry about because they became established just before the onset of the technological revolution began.

But they too need to get on the interactive data visualization bandwagon, or you are going to be getting their customers (an enticing cup of tea). It’s all about marrying this technological revolution with information their customers need, using a storyline that humans can relate to.

This taps into another part of the brain known as the limbic system. The Limbic system is the center where your emotions work towards connecting dots between information.

It’s that feeling you get when you see a good commercial, with a sale offer, and you are picking up the phone. Interactive data visualization takes marketing to a new level by leading your customers to feel something in a way that leads them to make a buying decision.

Understand Your Company Better

An essential connection between big data and the outcome of your business model are the emotional connections you create. Not only can you understand your customers better with an interactive data visualization model, but you can follow your business better as well.

Airlines use interactive data visualization all the time, for example. If you own an airline and compile all of the data of your business for one day, on traveler’s destinations alone, you learn a lot about your business.

It’s a piece of big data or information that can tell you a lot about the people that you serve. And your business can use this information to make improvements in your company.

When you have that information at lightning speed, you can make business decisions on the fly.

Maybe you’re the manager of the airport terminal food court, having access to all of that information quick can help you make decisions about scheduling, staffing, even break time.

There is a direct connection between big data and significant results. The sooner you can spot problems, the sooner you can solve them.

And the sooner you continue making money. You may even spot new opportunities to make more money.

If, for example, you are running a counter at the food court in the airport and know a particular time of day that sees the heaviest traffic due to commuter flights, you can offer more grab and go type products at your place of business.

Big data helps you spot problems and opportunities. Discover 6 fascinating effects data visualization has on decision making at every level of a business.

Use Infographics

An infographic is a way to put a lot of information into a one-page image to tell a story or explain information in a visually pleasing way. Today you can get an infographic on almost anything.

Infographics have a way of drawing connections for your readers and helping them to see a lot of information at once. It helps them to synthesize what is essential to them.

They also tie in together two crucial parts of the brain, the one that handles text processing and the other that handles visual processing. At the same time, the semantic component of our minds allows us to pull it all together in an emotionally understandable way.

Infographics are a great way to tell a story, send a message, and share a lot of big data in an interactive data visualization tool. You want to share data that evokes a change in feelings.

On a mortgage or banking website, for example, infographics that include home sales and closings stir up feelings of excitement. This kind of post or infographic is going to generate a lot of shares because it makes people feel something.

You want to educate and inform, while also building a good story and good “family” vibe in your place of business.

Build on Community

Everybody wants to have a sense of community, especially from people they are buying from. One study showed that 87% of customers were more willing to buy from a company that had some form of community outreach.

Show your community and your community connections whenever possible when you are using interactive data visualization in marketing. When a customer is emotionally connected to you, your brand increases in value to them by 21%.

You can do this with your actual brand and with your company, as well. Sharing photos of employees of the month or week can also build a sense of community in your organization, as well.

If your business helps or supports any non-profit organizations, you want to show this off too. This is a little tidbit of information that people remember and tell their friends and family about.

Again, this information about your company pulls heartstrings, and when your consumers feel emotionally connected to you, they are more likely to buy from you.

Employees perform better when they are recognized, and consumers feel good about businesses that take care of the people that work for them.

Discover the undeniable value of data in decision-making today.

Get Social

Getting social with your business on social media is the easiest way to activate interactive data visualization and test it with your audience. Social media research simply shows that posts with photos experience more engagement.

From a scientific perspective, the simple reason for that is that our brains compute images differently and faster than words.

Before you invest in a big interactive data visualization campaign, play with your posts on social media. Switch up when you post to see what time of day you’re getting the most conversions.

Toggle back and forth between text posts and image posts and identify what kind of posts are getting the most engagement and attention.

What does your audience want to read about or see? When you start feeding them exactly what they want, they come back for more.

Invest in Big Data

The data on big data is in, it works. It will sell your brand and make you a leader in the field when you invest in it in a way to ensure that it is used properly.

The reason it works is that it relies on the science of the brain, which is an unmovable aspect of human life. When it comes to senses, vision is the number one sense that companies can access to win big with interactive data visualization.

Some brain scientists say that when it comes to data, if you hear it, you will remember 10 % of it 3 days later. If you add a video or picture to that data, you will remember 65 % of it.

Social media is a great place to start this project, with over 3.5 billion active social media users online now. Facebook Business alone has over 60 million accounts, generating leads and conversions for businesses every day.

Instagram is also a hotbed of interactive data visualization, with 75% of Instagram users visiting a website or buying something after seeing big data on Instagram.

Those numbers could be converting for you. Are they?

Start Using Big Data Today

Our brain computes words as a series of pictures in themselves but must process each of them individually when we’re reading. Using big data in an interactive visualization process is the way to merge both of these scientific processes in a way that has your clients and customers reaching for their wallets.

Explore the top 10 types of data visualization made simple by the experts at Boost Labs, and invest today.

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