As a new media instrument, infographics have a bit of a checkered history. Once fiercely touted as the “next big thing” in social media, they’ve become something of a cliché. The truth is that they’re more than just a passing fad aimed at Buzzfeed listicles. Infographics actually have many uses beyond mere click bait. For businesses of all sizes, they can be effectively used for the following purposes.

Promoting a Brand Online

Let’s start out with the obvious. Yes, it’s been proven that infographics are a great way to get your name out there. The key is coming up with images that go beyond something that would be produced by a generator like Piktochart or Vizualize. If you take a more organic route, an infographic can create a lasting impact that delivers outstanding ROI.

Recruiting Team Members

Infographics can be an effective advertising tool if you’re looking for fresh blood. If you want your infographic to land with your target employee demographic, you need to come up with something that stands out. The kind of superior talent that you no doubt seek has seen tons of publications. Use a picture to demonstrate why your company is better than the rest.

Keeping Track of Goals

Another great way to use infographics is to keep team members up to date on where you are with a specific project. A good motivational infographic might compare current results with productivity achieved on a past task. In addition to apprising staff of a project’s status, it’ll also serve to tell them how close or far they are from achieving a goal.

Boosting Company Morale

Rallying the troops by reminding them of how much better they’re doing than their predecessors is a great way to use infographics. It’s far better than handing out company mugs and can do a lot of good for office camaraderie. It’s always nice to be recognized for your good work and excellence. Infographics can provide a handy way to show the staff how they’re doing.

Communicating with Staff

Yet another fantastic way to use infographics is as a vehicle for conveying information quickly to the employees. They’re more powerful than mere memos and manage to encapsulate a lot of data into one tight package. If you want to send a subtle message to your employees, an infographic can do it in style and give them a handy guide for things like company etiquette. For example, ASEA has an infograph that can help a newer employee better understand what it is this business does.

Providing Mental Breaks

Being “always on” isn’t always great for productivity. It’s good to take a break from the grind, let your mind wander and look at the bigger picture. Infographics are a great way to achieve all of those goals. Much like fluff social media articles, these publications can give team members a great way to zone out for a second and forget about their responsibilities long enough to relieve stress.

Coming Up with New Ideas

The best thing about infographics is that they can act as a brainstorming method for both creators and consumers. Infographics allow people to associate seemingly unrelated data in fresh new ways. Really great ideas often percolate out of that information stew. Your business’s next big idea may come from that eclectic mix of information or the reaction of employees to it.

While they may look nifty and satisfy our inner desires for aesthetic beauty, infographics have many uses beyond the goal of building a brand. You can adapt them to a variety of purposes with a little unconventional thinking. In essence, that’s what real entrepreneurs do. They see things in ways that others don’t and squeeze unexpected value out of existing paradigms.