A few months ago I shared information related to Content Planning for Social Media – an important initial step in building your social media strategy.
In this blog, I will cover design tools and apps that I regularly use to create the content I plan. Consider this – whenever a post is being shared to promote a link or even just text, adding visuals and video are much more likely to increase engagement than a simple text post. In this blog, we are going to cover how actually to create the graphics you see on all the social media platforms.
Many of you have an eye for design and are familiar with graphic design tools like Adobe Illustrator. If you aren’t (and many of us aren’t, so don’t fret!), know that there are apps that help create designs with custom dimensions. Here is a list of a few tools and apps you might find handy:
- Shutterstock.com – $$$$
- 123RF.com – $$$
- Fotolia.com – $$
- Death to the Stock Photo – $ – one of my favorite subscription sites ($15 a month) for non-stock looking photos that I can edit for my purposes
- Personal Photos – be it from my smartphone or camera or professionally created photos of what I am promoting
- Canva – Start to Finish drag-and-drop design tool
- Fotor – Graphic Design Tool
- BeFunky – Photo editing and graphic design tool
- Recite This – Quote graphic creator
- Pablo – Quote graphic creator
Screen Captures and Annotations
- Skitch – annotations, shapes and sketches
- Jing – capture basic video, animation, and still images, and share them
Handy Image Creation Tools
- Easel.ly – Infographic creation
- PlaceIt – Drop your website onto a photo
- Social Image Resizer Tool – Resize your graphics
- Pictaculous – Grab a color palette from any photo
Out of ideas or just need inspiration? Visit these websites below and explore several ideas to get an idea for color schemes and layouts you like – you’d be surprised how easy it is to replicate some of the designs yourself!
Here’s one great tip: if you would rather put this in the hands of professionals, an affordable way to go about this is to find a graphic designer on Fiverr.
These are all great tools used for creating custom images, but it is also important to know what the latest image dimensions are for each of these platforms. One of the things that frustrate many professionals that use social media to promote their businesses is how often the image size dimensions change. It seems that you only get a few months of your pages looking entirely consistent across multiple platforms when one of the platforms will have a mood swing, making everything off!
Does it matter that you are consistent in your branding across the multiple platforms in which you have a presence? In short, yes. Think of it as an extension of your business card – it makes you (and your brand) look professional, and it is an opportunity to showcase what you do in a visual way.
Click on the graphic below to take a look at the amazing infographic created by makeawebsitehub.com by clicking on the image below – it has all of the latest image dimensions that you can have handily available when you go about making your social media pages consistent across the multiple platforms you have the presence on.
(Want to download this cheat sheet? Download the PDF, here!)
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