5 Tips for Better Social Media Graphics

Each week we sit down at Canva and go through our social media plan for the week ahead. It’s a great way to prioritise what we’ve got coming up — launches, blog posts, events — and helps ensure that we have great visual content to share with our community.

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The most important thing with visual branding is consistency. It’s easy to set yourself up for design success with a little bit of planning and a regular routine.

 In this post, I’ll share some of the techniques we use to manage our visual content at Canva. You can use them to step up your own visual content strategy for social media.

Batch your content

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Batching content will help organise your time. This is a great tip that comes from social media blogger Donna Moritz.  Donna suggests creating multiple graphics at the same time. You might like to set aside time at the beginning of the week to design graphics for all your social posts. It’s something we do at Canva.

We have a Google Spreadsheet that’s shared with our marketing and design team. It lists all the upcoming social media posts, blog posts and events we have coming up so that we can plan our content creation.

Create a style guide

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Documenting your branding guidelines helps ensure consistency. It doesn’t need to be complicated. Be consistent in your use of fonts, colors, photo filters and logos. It can be helpful to record examples of how your branding should be used. That might include example posts that you would share on social media, or sample layouts.

Creative Bloq has some great examples from well-known brands.

Optimise for each platform

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Each social media network has a different need. Remember to get the sizes right when posting each social network. Make sure your blog is set-up with Facebook Open Graph and Twitter Cards so that visuals from your posts display when they are shared online. On Pinterest, opt for longer form graphics, as these have the highest engagement.

Practise, practise, practise

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Your graphics will get better and better, the more you practice. We’ve spent lots of time building up a library of great tutorials at Canva. They cover topics such as branding, layout design and choosing color palettes.

The more you design, the more confident you’ll become with your graphics. Sometimes another set of eyes can help too. Ask a friend to have a look at your graphics and provide some feedback.

Do a content “audit”

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Every now and then, it helps to do an audit of your content. What images are working best on social media? Have you found that particular designs perform the best? This can also be a good time to think about any branding choices you’re making.

Sites like Designspiration and Dribble can be good sources of inspiration. Be sure to think about your overall branding. It may even be time to refresh your logo and create some icons that you can use consistently in your social media graphics.

Have you tried any of these tips? Have they worked for you? Share your comments below.

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About Zach Kitschke

Zach is Head of Communications for Canva, which makes graphic design amazingly simple. He writes about social media and has achieved coverage on Mashable, TechCrunch, NBC and The Next Web.