Social media is here to stay. The popularity of platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest increases every year. And with approximately 3.96 billion users on social media worldwide, it’s a golden marketing opportunity for brands and individuals. Imagine the reach that’s possible when you have a successful page!
So how do you maximize your performance online? Well, that’s where social media design comes in. After all, social media is a very visual space, and your posts have to be compelling to compete with the other great images out there. Here, we’ll take you through the basics of setting up your social media design presence, including everything from the types of content to a breakdown of concrete steps to take to build a strategy all your own.
Social media design is everything relating to the development and implementation of visual content on these platforms. So that social media banner you whipped up is social media design. The same goes for that infographic you just liked on your For You page. It’s straightforward, but there are tips and tricks to generate a cohesive visual identity.
Now that you have the “what” in mind, it’s time to develop and deliver your plan. Here’s how to do that:
Like most things in life, you have to have a plan first. Of course, the plan can change, but starting with an adaptable strategy makes the overall process more streamlined — and gives you something to alter when your needs change.
An overall design, messaging, posting, and engagement strategy informs your content and makes the visual elements easier to incorporate. When cultivating your marketing plan, make sure social media is a part of that system. Know your value proposition, your target demographic, and how to best reach those people.
Social media’s algorithm presents content to users with like-minded interests, so while it’s good branding in general to know your audience, it’s vital for social media. Research to gather the demographics of those following your brand, and then turn that information into personas — actual people instead of facts and figures. Cater your content to that audience and consider related interests that may appeal to that audience as well.
Part of knowing your audience is having a good understanding of their temperament and emotions. If you’re a wellness influencer committed to meditation and the art of mindfulness, then your followers are probably like-minded. As a result, they’ll appreciate a more mellow feed with calmer blue hues and content that inspires breaks from the hustle and bustle of daily life. The right tones and level of saturation have a tremendous effect on the mood of the page, so keep this in mind while developing your initial strategy.
Yes, social media is important for branding, but that doesn’t mean your brand needs to have a presence on every platform. Part of your research and strategy is figuring out where your audience hangs out. For instance, fashion content is popular on Instagram and Pinterest, but LinkedIn is probably not the space to share your OOTD.
An important part of being organized on social media is building and maintaining a content calendar. This publishing schedule helps businesses and content creators line up their posts and assets, so there’s a rhythm and system behind the madness. You can set up the calendar in Google calendar, use a spreadsheet, or try a third-party tool that helps you visualize your strategy.
When developing your assets, implement the best design principles. An effective graphic about an upcoming event must be informative, but users are more likely to read the information if it’s presented compellingly with balance, contrast, and visual hierarchy. And if you need some help getting started, try a tool like Stencil for Visual which makes creating properly formatted graphics a breeze.
Whether informational, promotional, or interactive, a mix of post types keeps your account fresh and engaging. Remember to occasionally go live, link to external content, create polls and surveys, and encourage competitions so that a lucky follower can win your latest product.
There are two components to balance in your social media design: individual posts and the overall vibe of your page. Instagram makes this easy with a full grid that anyone can visit and assess. Other platforms may not display images in the same fashion, but the same principles apply for presenting well-designed content that anyone can check out and maybe even become a follower. Think of the whole picture while crafting all the little details that make your content special.
Look at the likes, views, saves, and comments on each post. See your follower count. Review the metrics provided by the platforms on each post. Look into whether posting at a certain time results in more engagement. All these components come together to paint a picture of how your content is performing on social media. If some content performs better than others, it’s a great indicator to try more of that type of content. And if you see performance shifting from what it used to be, it may be a sign to give something else a try. Don’t be afraid to pivot!
Social media is constantly evolving. This pertains to the rules, algorithms, dimensions of standard posts, and much more. So be aware of changes to the platform that impact your content’s distribution. Stay up to date to keep your content relevant and high-performing.
There are several types of content to consider when creating a social media design. Let’s explore the main ones:
Now you know the importance of a visual identity online as well as the types of content you’ll need, but what impacts design? Here’s what to look for when creating designs for social media:
When developing a brand identity, colors come into play in the early stages, and that’s why that palette should be included in your social media presence. Incorporate the right hues in your icons, or have a theme throughout the page that’s even present in how you edit images.
Having an effective marketing strategy on social media makes a world of difference. And since these platforms are so visual, social media designs have the power to boost your performance. If you follow the above tips, tricks, and steps, you are more likely to make the most of your reach with the possibility of billions of new followers, subscribers, fans, or customers. Just remember to do your research, find your people, be strategic, and don’t be afraid to try something new. Additionally, you can make use of tools like Namecheap Visual to make brand design simple. Create a logo in minutes that accurately represents your brand’s mission and gives viewers all the right feels. Then, use that same logo in your profile pictures or as part of your cover photo. Plus, it’s completely free! While you’re at it, take those branding skills and try building a website, too. With a website, you can link to your socials and vice versa — getting the word out in style.