Advantages & disadvantages of visual communication

Updated April 17, 2017

Visual communication is just one of the ways people interact, but it is one of the most important methods of communication. While written and verbal communication are both valuable, it can be difficult to explain yourself without a visual aid. Visual communication has several advantages and disadvantages, and the process can add to, or detract from, a presentation.


Being able to view the person speaking gives his words more power than if the individual was merely heard. After all, facial movements and gestures are a valuable addition to the communication process.


Expert speakers know how to properly orchestrate their gestures and facial expressions to enhance speaking performance. By making eye contact with the audience and using applicable hand motions, such as a teacher signalling "silence," the words become more meaningful to the audience.


Excessive gesturing can detract from a spoken presentation, because the listener's attention is directed to the gestures.


A speaker can lose track of the topic if a visually distracting element is in the room.

Fun Fact

Many experts recommend imagining members of the listening audience in their underwear to help reduce the speaker's anxiety.

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