This, in turn, brings tons of new followers and fans while also enticing them to click on any links in the image captions or content itself. But, in order to achieve these types of results, you need effective graphic design.
In the past, creating stunning images used to be hard. To get the right effects for your images, you needed a huge set of tools (some of which could be a nightmare for novice users).
But today, anyone can become a pro designer thanks to the advent of low-cost, easy to use graphic design software and apps. Those that couldn’t find a suitable job now have the opportunity to learn and work.
All you need to create stunning social media visuals are the right tools and to follow best practices that will help you produce fantastic images for social media.
If you’re ready to get started, read the rest of this article to discover 8 ways to make social media graphics your fans will love.
1. Turn social media graphics into memes
One of the most effective graphic design hacks that will make your audience love your content is transforming social media graphics into memes.
The social media world is driven by visuals, and if you want to capture the attention of your audience, you must produce high-quality content that is interesting, funny, educational, or engaging in any other way – and memes are a great way for you to produce content that resonates with your audience.
They are low cost and easy to create. They are also more popular and have a longer lifespan compared to other types of content on social media.
Memes also have a high probability of going viral, which can help you generate tons of new likes, followers, and friends.
When using memes as part of your marketing strategy, remember to ensure there’s enough contrast in order to provide balance and make your meme text easier to read. This also makes the images a lot more accessible – and ultimately more likely to be shared.
To create social media memes, you can use your own images or take advantage of the many free resources online, such as:
- Deposit Photos
2. Keep the text concise
Adding text to your images gives them context and makes it easier for your content to connect with the right audience. Just make sure the text in your social media graphics is readable and not too long.
Text should be there to improve your creativity, not obscure it.
Keeping it simple makes your visual a lot easier for your audience to understand and enjoy, especially when you consider the short attention spans of social media users.
You might even consider pairing contrasting fonts as a way to make the text stand out even more. Choose cool fonts with high contrast so that they balance each other out while still adding an eye-catching feature to your design.
So, for instance, you might use the “Sifonn” font together with the “Arvo” font, as in this example below:
You can further contrast the two typefaces and make your text stand out even more – by increasing the size of the title and/or using a brighter colour to complement the background image. This is a great tactic to use as part of your social media branding efforts.
In fact, matching colours with your designs is an effective way to make your graphics pop. So get familiar with the colour wheel and make sure everything is in harmony, from the background to the text, and even the text holders.
You can use a colour picker tool like this one to provide you with the hex code (a six digit code that identifies exact colours on the colour wheel).
3. Use hashtags and links in captions
Captions are important when creating social media graphics because they capture the reader’s attention.
They give voice to the picture, allowing you to reach out to your fans and followers in a more powerful way than you can with only the image.
Captions are also great ways to showcase your brand’s voice, and when done right, this will attract even more people to your business.
When creating captions for your graphics, you must use different elements to make them more effective.
This includes things such as:
- Hashtags: A study conducted recently shows that using hashtags and captions results in 29.4% more reach, as well as 9.84% more likes, and 19.3% more comments.
- Links: Use links to other content such as YouTube videos, webinars, blog posts, etc. as a way to add more value to your post and point your audience towards more helpful content, thereby keeping them engaged for significantly longer.
- Keywords: You can also include more information about the graphic and what it’s meant to suggest to make it easier for your audience to consume it. Using keywords in your image captions also helps to complete the picture for social media algorithms so you can rank higher for those terms.
4. Share graphics from your brand’s personal page
When you create social media graphics, you must share them from your brand or company’s personal pages, and not from another page.
Depending on your type of social media marketing strategy, you may share your content from many different places, including working with collaborators and influencers to boost your campaigns.
But it’s important to always ensure that you post your graphics from your brand’s personal pages so you can effectively build your brand presence and improve your efforts for attracting, engaging, and acquiring customers.
5. Watermark graphics with your brand logo
Consistency is arguably the most important skill for brands to master. It builds trust with your audience and makes your content on social media instantly recognisable – something that is crucial if you hope to attract an audience in today’s overcrowded social space.
A great way to create consistency in all your marketing channels is to use graphic design tools to design image templates that use the same colours, fonts, and types of images across all your channels.
Different companies and brands, however, may use the same or similar colour schemes, so the absolute best way to ensure consistency in everything you do is to watermark graphics with your brand logo wherever appropriate.
This way, you not only create graphics that are synonymous with your brand, but you also get the added benefit of increased exposure and visibility when your fans and followers share your images with their own networks.
In addition to that, you can also add transparent icons to make your images unique.
There are a million different ways you can experiment with this. There is no right or wrong way to do it. You can simply play around with the tools and let your creative juices flow by adding different icons, colours, levels of transparency, etc. to your background images.
In the example below, a light transparency was applied to the icon and a filter was used in the background image to give it higher contrast and make the text easier to read.
Just make sure that you avoid over editing and resist the temptation to press every button you see. When it comes to features and filters like these, subtlety is a great policy.
Creating a great logo is important, but you want to make sure that no one else can steal all your hard work or use your logo in a way that harms your brand reputation. To help prevent this, you should seek to copyright your logo before you start embedding it within your social media graphics.
6. Use shapes and icons to illustrate information
If you must convey information to your audience, shapes and icons can help you do so in an engaging way.
You can accomplish quite a lot with just simple shapes and icons found on even the most basic graphic design tools.
Whether you want to create a unique text holder or a complex infographic, you can do so without having to learn the skills of a professional graphic designer – as long as you have the right tools.
Using shapes and icons in your images also helps you to think outside the box so you can come up with original designs. Furthermore, these types of images are shared a lot on social media, which can give your marketing campaigns a huge boost.
You can use icons and shapes in a variety of ways to create informative and interesting social media posts. So for instance, you might use circle icons to represent different percentages if sharing a report, as in the example below:
7. Make use of grids for your images
Using grids can help give your social media graphics a professional effect that demands attention.
With the right graphic design tools, you will be able to use grids to create world-class layouts without having to learn advanced design skills.
Canva is one of the tools that specialises in this type of layout and allows you to edit images with similar themes and place them in a grid to create a stunning composition.
You can line up your images however you want to and even apply unique filters across all the images to give them a consistent look.
Grids also make it easy for you to tell a story, as shown in the image below:
When using grid layouts, make sure each image has a single focal point and a clear subject to avoid giving your images a cluttered look. This way, you will be able to create social media graphics that look like they were designed by a professional.
8. Keep your message at the forefront
Creating great social media graphics isn’t only about grabbing the attention of your viewers. Your message is important too.
Make sure you offer value to your followers and fans so you can motivate them to share your visual content and engage with it more often. You can do this by understanding their motivations for posting/sharing on social media.
There are many different reasons why people share social media posts, which include:
- To bring enlightenment, entertainment, value, education etc., into the lives of other people they care about.
- To nourish and grow their relationships
- To define themselves
- For the purpose of self-fulfillment
- To inform others about issues they care about and the causes they support
…and many other reasons.
Keep all these things in mind when creating your social media graphics so you can provide your audience with relevant content that they will be eager to engage with and share.
The best part about crafting awesome social media graphics is that you don’t have to start from scratch either.
There are tons of templates that you can use, such as the “grid” template example above. All you have to do is choose the appropriate template for the social media platform where you want to post it, swap in your own images and text, and you’ll be good to go.
Alternatively, you can hire companies, agencies, or freelancers that offer done-for-you social media graphics. This is the ideal option if you lack the time or the inclination to create your own images.
Visuals should always be a big part of your social media marketing strategy. The tips outlined in this article will help you create strong visual graphics for social media so you can give your audience more reasons to follow, like, comment, and share your content.
Ultimately, great social media images will lead to more conversions and sales for your business.
Use this article as your resource to get started right now making social media graphics your fans will absolutely love.
Ron Stefanski is a website entrepreneur and marketing professor who has a passion for helping people create and market their own online business. You can learn more from him by visiting OneHourProfessor.com. You can also connect with him on YouTube or Linkedin.