Using visuals in social media marketing
Whatever the type or size of your business, you can’t ignore the huge importance social media holds as part of your overall marketing campaign.
Social media marketing has quickly become top of the list for businesses looking to grow and reach new customers. This is because it gives access to such large and diverse audiences (most people have access to the internet these days, and most of them will be on one or more social platforms daily), it’s pretty simple to set up and use, and most of all, it’s free.
In a previous article, I mentioned that social media marketing has become more visual over the past few years. You only have to look at your social feeds to see that there are a huge number of photographs, graphic images, videos and animated GIFs dominating them.
Now that most of us have access to smartphones, it’s so simple for us to take a snap and have it out there in mere seconds.
With so many images to scroll through, it can be tough to have your post stand out in all the noise. Most people scroll through their feeds pretty mindlessly, so creating something to make them stop and want to read your content is pretty tricky.
I wanted to write this post to talk a little bit about each type of visual that we commonly see on social media feeds and share a few tips on how to make them the best they can be.
As ever, if you need me to help you with your online branding or want to chat about how to get your overall imagery up to scratch, I’m always happy to offer my advice. [link to contact/email]
Having a bunch of well-designed graphics up your sleeve can really elevate your social posts. They can be used to get your brand recognised by using uniform colours and styles, and help the reader understand your message with clever images and text.
Never be afraid to re-use your graphics now and again – it all helps with brand recognition, and there will always be a chunk of people who didn’t see it the first time around anyway.
Photos and video
Platforms like Instagram and TikTok have brought photography and video to the forefront. In fact, pretty much every social platform now makes it easy to upload these kinds of images – and if you can master it, then you’ll likely find that your post views are massively favoured, both by the platforms and your followers.
People buy from people, and showing your mug, whether that’s a quick snap of you showing off a new product, a video giving your audience tips and advice or hot news, can really make your brand feel personable and stand out.
A good, simple animation added to your social post makes it so much more memorable. It instantly grabs the viewers’ attention and sets you apart from other static posts.
Our eye is drawn to movement and colour – and animation is a fun way of taking advantage of that.
You can also use it to illustrate your message, making what you’re saying in your post easier to understand and digest.
"Let’s say you want your post to advertise your blog, for example. I’m willing to bet you’ve got at least 5 or 6 quotable sentences in that blog post you can quite easily use as a quote in a graphic. Do it!"
I know what you’re thinking – everyone uses quotes on social media. It’s so boring, right?
But actually, there’s a reason why they’re so popular, and they can really speak to your followers on a personal level. BUT – you have to get it right!
It’s easy to cop out and use one of those really well-known motivational quotes that we see everywhere. But if you want to really stand out, they’re not going to do it for you. It takes a bit more thought…
Sure, you can quote famous people like Steve Jobs or Albert Einstein, but there’s absolutely nothing wrong with looking closer to home. Yeah, you can even quote yourself.
Let’s say you want your post to advertise your blog, for example. I’m willing to bet you’ve got at least 5 or 6 quotable sentences in that blog post you can quite easily use as a quote in a graphic. Do it!
The great thing about using quotes, wherever you source them from, is that they are really, really shareable. If you can hit on a few that resonate with your audience, they’ll happily share it with their audience, too.
How to design for social media posts
Good branding is key to success with your marketing efforts, and your social media posts should be no different. Make sure that everything you post uses the same themes and brand voice throughout.
When creating visuals for your social posts, be mindful of what your overall branding looks like. Do you have specific colours? Use those. The fonts on your website should tie in, too.
The more you can make your branding uniform across all of your channels, the more recognisable you’ll be online.
Creating regular visuals for your social media can cost a lot of time, so anything to speed things up is always a good idea.
For things like graphics and quotes, it’s a good idea to keep hold of a few templates so that you can easily overtype. This makes the whole process simple, and takes much less time.
If consistency in social media is key, then visuals and graphics are the glue that holds it all together. Post often, but also post the most valuable content that you can.
If you need a graphic designer to work with you on any aspect of your branding or visual marketing, feel free to call me for a chat.