One of the best ways to help journalists and consumers understand statistics in your press releases, articles and marketing copy is to turn a statistic into a picture they can see in their minds.
I just saw a great example of this today.
Greg Stromberg, CEO of Toobee International, sells a toy called “The Amazing Flying Can.” It looks like a one-third-size chunk of a soda can, without the metal top. Designed by two aeronautical engineers, it sails, soars, swoops and curves when thrown. And it’s safe for kids because it has no rough edges.
Three phrases in Greg’s marketing copy make me smile:
—“Toobee weighs less than a marshmallow”
—“Toss it for distance. World distance record 283 feet (94 yards). That’s just 9 yards short of a football field.” (I think his math is wrong. It’s actually 6 yards short of a football field. But you get the point.)
—You can have your company name or logo imprinted on the can. So Greg calls it “a business card with wings.”
I know how light a marshmallow is and I know how long a football field is. Those two simple descriptions gave me a much better idea of the product. And I can envision what a business card with wings looks like.
Don’t let your readers’ eyes glaze over when you use statistics. Instead, offer a simile or metaphor that helps the reader understand.