Dataviz: A Critical Skill for Modern Marketers

By Clare McDermott

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A decade ago a friend bought me a copy of Edward Tufte’s iconic book Beautiful Evidence.

The professor emeritus of political science, statistics, and computer science at Yale University has spent his career teaching others how to turn information and data into elegantly crafted drawings and graphics – and even more, doing so in a way that illuminates in interesting and unexpected ways.

Inspired by him, I set out to learn more about visualizing data, and how to use it in everyday life. The subject area is massive and at times overwhelming, but data visualization (sometimes called “dataviz”) is among the most critical skills for marketers to understand at least at the basic level, if not to study in more depth. Let’s walk through the what, how, and why of data visualization for marketing.

What’s data visualization?

Put simply, dataviz is the art and science of displaying information (data) in visual form. While bar charts are a form of dataviz, the term is more often used to describe the translation of complex or nuanced data into summarizing, artful images. One of the most highly rated sessions at Content Marketing World was from Scott Berinato, senior editor at the Harvard Business Review and author of Good Charts: The HBR Guide to Making Smarter, More Persuasive Data Visualizations. In an interview with CCO magazine, Scott explains that in today’s data-abundant world, finding ways to extract human insights from data is a key challenge (and critical skill):

Finding ways to extract human insights from data is a critical skill, says @scottberinato. #dataviz
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“The amount of information coming at us is insane. It’s overwhelming. So visualization serves two purposes. First, it serves a prosaic purpose. It gets people’s …read more

Source:: content marketing

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