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Sami Ben Gharbia passed along a good link on Twitter about how you can never have too many graphics in your data representations.  The CNN article focuses on government and organizational data, which, to date, has been considered highly useful, but pretty boring.  Where is this trend going?

“A booming interest in data visualization, which can transform boring stats into compelling graphical presentations explaining our world.”

This concept obviously translates into any environment, and I couldn’t agree more.

You know how important first impressions are?  How wearing your best suit matters in a business meeting?  Same goes for your content.  The more visually appealing, the more digestible it is.

This is especially important when you’re offering publicly available data for the masses, whether from a governmental standpoint or a corporate standpoint.  With the increased focus on content production, and making large amounts of free content for the masses, if you want to be effective in your overall strategy (often this means to drive readers back to your brand in some way), you’ve got to make that content accessible in more ways than just words.

“Pretty” graphics indicate the following (at least to me):

  • You’ve spent time on your overall presentation
  • You’ve thought about how to most effectively present your data
  • You remember that, in many cases, a picture is worth a thousand words - you get one shot at the picture part
  • You’ve invested in “buttoning your data up”
  • You’ve taken into account your audience, and that some people may not understand your numbers - and therefore your presentation of those numbers - as well as you do
  • You care about how well people can interact with, play with and learn more about your data

Aside from the general excitement and emotion surrounding Tuesday inauguration, there are a lot of cool things happening online.

Firstly, my colleague Patrick pointed me towards a neat initiative put together by a friend of his, Andrew Turner, called the Inauguration Report 2009.  A collaboration between NPR, CBS News, American University and volunteers, it lists and maps reports from around the world, and you can participate by using various mobile applications, SMS messaging or using Twitter tag #inaug09 or #dctrips09.

A few more initiatives:

Streaming the inauguration events through Ustream.

Current announced it teamed up with Twitter by “adding your real-time Twitter messages (“tweets”) over our live broadcast of Barack Obama’s Inauguration.”

CNN and Facebook are providing live streaming, along with status updates and friend status feeds.

Hulu is (and has been) spotlighting a variety of streaming opportunities here.

The Citizen Media Law Project offers a full guide to documenting the 2009 Presidential Inauguration.

Do you have anything to add?

Keynote: The New Media Rollercoaster, Cynthia Gordon, VP of New Media Marketing from Universal Orlando Resort

  • The internet has completely revolutionized and transformed people’s lives.
  • It’s like a giant collective brain, and we’re sending messages back and forth to each other.
  • The consumer is in control.  Blogging has become mainstream.  The past couple of years has shown me that I need to pay attention that.  I also needed to find new and innovative ways to get in front of the audience.
  • CNN is an adaptable channel, they partnered with YouTube to bring the debates to the masses.  They figured out the concept of citizen journalism.
  • John Stewart and CNN iReporting video.
  • We went from 3 channels to over 100 channels doing multiple shows a year.  It’s must more difficult to be a marketer at these companies.
  • Ultimately, TV is still people’s preferred medium of watching shows, and that will drive online viewing.
  • You can’t stop technology, you have to make it easier for people to get your content.
  • Discussed Halloween Horror Night
  • Brought up efforts for Harry Potter theme park opening.
  • Both of these did happen some time before a Press Release was put out.
  • To promote the opening of a new Simpson’s Theme Park, Universal leveraged the millions of avatars that were made in the wake of the Simpson’s movie and made an online world for them to play in.

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