Having Fun With Halloween and Infographics

Information Builders
October 25, 2018

With Halloween coming up, kids getting excited, and retail sales accelerating, we thought we would pull a few stats and rankings and try to visualize them using our WebFOCUS Infographics tool. 

To be honest I was not familiar with this new capability, but within 30 minutes I created this:

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This is an easy way to present text, graphics, photos, numbers and charts in a visually attractive way, that adds another dimension to business intelligence and analytics, and a new option for telling data oriented stories visually.  

The Halloween example is very simple, and completely static. The data points, text, images and charts do not change based on who receives it.  For an organization that plans to create and send personalized infographics to hundreds maybe thousands of employees or customers, additional techniques are required.  Combining a BI and analytics platform with governed access to limitless data sources, to a template based data-driven infographic, can be extremely powerful if utilized appropriately.

Let's dive a little deeper and explain the 3 step process for infographic development and distribution:

  1. DESIGN.  Step 1 is to create or open an existing infographic template, and design the output.  Some organizations create a library of templates for 'non creative' users to employ.  Agencies can be used to create the graphics for templates, if the objective is a super professional branded outcome.  Once opened in our template tool, assemble visual objects such as text, images, data points, charts, and determine which ones are static and which are dynamic and data driven.

    Below is an example of a WebFOCUS chart object being added to the Halloween template (at the bottom):

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  2. POPULATE.  Step 2 is to open the template in WebFOCUS InfoAssist, one of our analytics authoring tools that has access to various governed data sources, and populate the objects. You can create multiple data queries and connect each of them to individual objects on the template, in this case adding a dual axis chart at the bottom, sourced from Halloween trend data. 

    [Click for larger version]

    A key concept here is that the queries can be run with filters, and an infographic will be generated for each database entry for that filter.  Perhaps this Halloween example could be run to generate an infographic for mulitple countries or buyer demographics. Any dynamic objects on the page would be populated with different results, e.g. text, images, charts, visualizations, reports, KPIs. 

    For example we have a customer who generates tens of thousands of activity statement infographics for each of its customers, by using one infographic template.  WebFOCUS is run using a customer ID filter, and a fully personalized infographic is generated based on the data for each individual.
  3. DISTRIBUTE. You likely guessed that the third step is distribution. Within WebFOCUS, the infographic can be setup to be executed by a scheduler to create and automatically burst (send) each customized infographic to a database of contacts. The WebFOCUS platform is the key enabler to make it possible to automate the personalization and distribution of high quality infographics to thousands, or even millions of people via scheduling and bursting.  

So there you have it, what started as a bit of fun playing around with Halloween data turned into a quick explanation of how to design, populate and distribute a personlized infographic to a large audience of employees, partners or customers. Easy as pecan pie.

Here's a link to more information on WebFOCUS Infographics.

Thanks for your time today!