When we had the original idea for iCharts sometime ago, one of things that drove us where that most articles online today that report on facts and figures are text based, at most contain tables, hardly ever charts are used. An image says a thousand words, everyone knows that but still, no charts in articles. Contrast that with print publications and you will find charts and visuals virtually in every printed publication that has some facts to report on. We spend a good time trying to understand why this is the case.
For one – very simple, and straight forward – there was no tool available that makes it easy to create a chart that can be easily placed online and combines the rich formatting features of Powerpoint with the the interactive and social sharing features you would expect on the web. We fixed that by launching our iCharts service a few months back.
The second, bigger, reason though is that Journalists and Bloggers alike don’t actually have the time to create charts for their articles. The time span between receiving the data and publishing the article has become ultra short, breaking the news is the priority after all. Consumer on the other hand want charts, between reading a text-only article and reading the same article with a chart, the chart-based article will win hands down.
The answer is with those who actually collect and provide the data in the first instance. For example, if TechCrunch writes about let’s say Apple Mobile Growth , the data is provided by ComScore. When New York Times writes an article on Impatient? It May Be Hurting Your Credit Score the journalist will use the data from this press release . If interesting and useful content is offered to Journalists and Blogger, they will reuse the content offered to them. A blogger from American Century wrote about the Holiday Spending Outlook and used a chart from National Retail Federation. The method by which Journalists and Blogger consume their feeds is via Press Releases that are issued by the data providers.
So adding the charts to press releases is the way to get to reach those Journalists. Here I would like to ask the journalists what would be their preference. We have created a short walk through on how to add a chart from a press release to a website or blog? Would love to hear your views on this drop your views on the comments and let’s find what works best for Journalist.