A few weeks ago, I told you the mistakes you should avoid on Instagram. Having high-quality graphics on social media will show your audience that you are professional and credible. The quality of graphics on social media is often overlooked because people think of it as just a fun outlet. And while it may be fun, SO many of your potential clients are on social media and looking at you.
So, below are a few tips for improving your social media graphics!
Utilize the tools available to you
As a designer, I use professional software to design for my clients. This is software that most people do not own/know how to use. If for some reason you don’t want to (or can’t) work with a designer to create social media graphics, there are still a LOT of free resources and tools out there for you to use. Here are my top recommendations:
- Unsplash.com (free photos)
- Death to the Stock Photo (free photo subscription)
- iStock (premium photos)
- Canva (free design tool)
- Pixelmator (premium design tool)
- Piktochart (free + premium options)
Brand your graphics
Make sure your graphics match you, your style. Your social media is an extension of your brand. If you are bright, airy and simple – then that’s what your graphics should look like. I imagine (or hope) your website, your invoices and business cards are cohesive — carry that cohesiveness over to your social media. If you don’t already have a style guide for your business, consider creating one that includes:
- Color palette
- Design elements (if applicable)
Learn the basics of design
You may not be a designer, but you can learn and understand the basics of design. Look at other professionals graphics who work with a professional designer (or are a designer), and make a note of what you see. Here are a few quick tips:
- Use high-quality images. If you take your own photos, use good lighting, creative angles and a good camera.
- Layout can make or break a graphic. Avoid putting elements in corners, or centering everything. Your image needs hierarchy. Make it easy to read.
- Don’t make your graphics too busy. People will scroll past your images, looking at it for probably just a few seconds. Many people struggle with, “I have all these details that need to be included, otherwise people will never know!” Pick your most important message (maybe it’s the date of your event), and make it the focus.
Create a strategy
This step may not be directly related in the designing of your social media graphics, but it may be one of the most important factors in using social media. Every channel of social media you use for your business should be used strategically to grow your audience. Posting random, on-the-fly content doesn’t work. If you post just because you feel like you should post something, stop. Here are a few tips on creating your strategy:
- Define your target audience. Who are they, how old are they, what do they do?
- What is your purpose? What’s your overall message?
- How can you provide value to your audience?
- Mix up your posts between informing, advertising, and inspiring.