Why “Know Your Audience” is Terrible Dataviz Advice—and What to Do Instead

Jun 1st, 2021 / Data Visualization
Every time I scroll through social media, someone’s post is telling me: “Want to know the secret to great dataviz?! Know your audience!” “Want to make a great dashboard?! Know your audience!!” I mean… duh. “Knowing your audience” is terrible data visualization advice. What does that even mean?! It’s too broad. It’s too generic. It’s too beginner-level. What’s the alternative? Not know my audience? Ignore their preferences altogether? Of course not. In this article, let’s dive deeper. Let’s look at 8 specific, nuanced, advanced ways of “knowing our audience.”
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How to Engage Your Audience with “Choose Your Own Adventure” Presentations

May 11th, 2021 / Presentations
Ready for an advanced presentation technique? Want to make sure your audience is engaged? No, those 10-minute Q&As at the end of a presentation don’t count as adequate engagement. Let’s notch up our engagement! In this blog post, you’ll learn about the “Choose Your Own Adventure” method for engaging our audiences during presentations. You’ll see a brief demo of the Choose Your Own Adventure method, a behind-the-scenes tour of my slides and a discussion of the caveats so you can decide when to use this method.
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Customizing Reports for the Audience with Deven Wisner

Oct 13th, 2020 / Data Visualization
When we should follow APA format? When should we not? Earlier this year I sat down with my good friend Deven Wisner about customizing reports for the audience. During this six-minute conversation, we talked about Deven’s current work (he’s a managing partner, professor and student himself!) as well as the advice he gives to his own students.
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