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How else can we help our clients digest information from an SOA? Part One
In the past decade, Video has exploded in popularity as a preferred method of learning and gathering information. They are highly visual and the amount of information that can be taken in far exceeds any other medium.
Videos can communicate both verbal and non-verbal tone, visual, emotional and rich content which engages people and increases their ability to understand the content.
To illustrate its popularity, YouTube is the second-largest search engine in the world, receiving more than 1.5 billion users per month who enjoy over 1 billion hours of video each day.
And according to Forbes in 2017, 95% of viewers are more likely to remember a call to action after watching a video, compared to 10% when reading it in text format.
So not only is a video a powerful tool for teaching, but it’s also very easy to consume. With the busy lifestyle that many adults are becoming accustomed to, they mig ht not have the time or patience to read long advice or product descriptions or dig deep into written content. Videos provide them with an easy and comfortable way to digest and retain information while feeling more connected to the person delivering the message.
Sound is one of the easiest ways to take in content as it doesn’t excessively draw on our brain capacity. This means we can consume audio while performing other tasks such as driving, commuting or even walking the dog.
Another benefit of audio is for vision-impaired clients, for whom voice recording, voice-over infographics, videos and audio presentations allow SOA information to be relayed with both tone and texture, digested on demand.
Our ears are constantly listening as part of our body’s defence mechanism and when we hear new or unusual things, our brain takes note of them. This applies to loud, unexpected noises like screeching brakes, as much as novel information related to our financial life, presented in audio form.
Symbols and iconography form a natural labelling system in the brain, which is why we have been using them as a communication tool for centuries. These symbols and icons are a quick and easy way to help people digest a story, understand a topic and break down complexity. People quickly learn to use icons to understand what has happened in the past, where they are in a particular journey and what they should be focussing on or doing next.
The psychology of colours can be used in many ways, allowing us to motivate, demotivate, highlight or anchor. Inherently, different colours mean different things. We know red means stop while green means go. Yellow carries more energy than the colour grey does. And of course, it’s a known fact that red cars are faster than white ones.
As advice documentation moves away from text, colour can be implemented more effectively to improve understanding and convey appropriate messages
They say ‘a picture tells a thousand words’ and for good reason. Research has shown that the human brain can process images up to 60,000 times faster than words.
With this in mind, the odds stack in favour of using more visual cues and pictures in our advice documents. Some Financial Planners are doing a good job of this now, but most of us, unfortunately, aren’t. Digitising the SOA of the future opens up many more opportunities for leveraging pictures and imagery to simplify how we deliver information.
Infographics are a way to simplify information in a way that is visual, engaging and easy to understand. Combining elements such as pictures, iconography and colour, they can display a lot of information in a simple way, particularly when presenting data, facts and figures.
Compared with spreadsheets, graphs or blocks of text, infographics have the potential to help more clients consume and understand complex information as well as the intricacies of our advice.
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