How to Use Canva to Level Up Your Social Media Marketing
If you're asking yourself, “what is this Canva that everybody is going on and on about” then this, my friend, is for you.
Canva is an online graphic design system that is easy to use and includes templates for many different things including social media posts, PowerPoint presentations, flyers, and so much more. It literally can make a designer of out anyone (I can imagine all graphic designers cringing when I say this) but it truly can level up your social media game in a matter of minutes.
Before we get started with this tutorial, I want to emphasize how planning your social media calendar in advance will help you achieve your social media marketing goals. You don’t want your social media strategy to be like throwing spaghetti against the wall to see what sticks. You want to determine your goals and write your content in a way that will achieve those goals. So before you start, take a minute to think about where you want your business to go and how your social media posts are going to help you achieve that. If you need help with this, check out my blog post https://allndesigns.com/4-reason-you-need-a-content-calendar/ where you can find my free social media content calendar.
Ok, now that we have planned some stuff, let’s get started creating some stuff! First, if you haven’t already, you need to go to www.canva.com and create an account. In the top right-hand corner of the website you will see a place to either login or create an account. You can use your Facebook account, your email, or your Google account to either sign in or sign up. Canva is free to use, however, there is a pro version that is $12.95 per month for the first year. I personally have a Canva Pro account and I believe it is worth every penny, but if you are just starting out, the free version is a good way to get going without having to spend a penny. Keep in mind that if you see something in the platform that has a little crown next to it, that means it is only available for purchase or with a pro account. Don’t worry though, there are many options in the platform that are free to use.
Now that we have created our account and gotten logged in, there is something you should do to help set yourself up to easily brand each design you make. First, on the main page, on the left-hand side choose the Brand Kit tab. Here you can enter your brand colors for easy access when designing. Canva uses HEX color codes but don’t worry, if you don’t know your brand’s Hex color codes, you can upload your logo here https://html-color-codes.info/colors-from-image/. This site will help you find the color codes for your brand. If you have Canva Pro, you can also enter your brand fonts in the Brand Kit tab. If your logo font isn’t available you can find similar ones by uploading your font to https://www.myfonts.com/WhatTheFont/. This site will tell what fonts or similar fonts to the image you uploaded. I suggest this to you because the more you brand your marketing materials, the more recognizable your brand will become. When people start to know your brand, they will start to trust your brand.
Now let’s get to the designing. We are going to head to the top right-hand corner again, except this time we’re going to choose “Create a design.” Here you’re going to choose a design based on what social platform you’re creating for. If you’re designing for Instagram, choose Instagram post or Instagram story. Instagram prefers different sizes for a post or a story. What’s nice about Canva is that it knows this and will size your design based on those preferences. An Instagram post should be a square, usually 1080 pixels by 1080 pixels, where an Insta story should be more like 1080 pixels by 1920 pixels. With Canva, you don’t have to know this, just choose the correct type of post, and then you are on your way.
Once you have your post type chosen, there will be several types of templates for you to choose from. If you want to design your post from scratch, you can do that too. The beauty of this program is how easy it is to use and how many resources are available inside of it. Don’t forget to take a look at the top of the screen at the “View” option. Here you can change your view to one of my favorites, which is the Grid View. This is super helpful when designing for Instagram because you can see what your designs will look like next to each other, like an Instagram grid.
Once you have a Canva design started, you can upload your logo by choosing the “Uploads” tab. From there, just navigate to the place on your computer where your logo is saved and upload it. Use the “Photos” tab to choose a stock photo to add to your design. The “Elements” tab is where you will find stickers, shapes, frames, and my favorite, the animations. These ‘stickers that move’ draw the eye in and add an element of fun to digital designs. You can also add music clips and videos to your designs which would give them an element of professionalism. If you click on the “More” tab, you will find a plethora of additional resources to add to your design. First example, you can add a QR Code to your design to link people back to your website or a menu, for example. You can also add a Google Map to your design just by clicking this option and adding your address. Another wonderful feature about Canva, is the ability to add a colorful chart to your design to make your data a bit more ‘sexy.’
So, do I have you convinced you that you can be a designer with Canva? This website truly does enable you to take your social media marketing to the next level. Don’t be intimidated, but if you need help, feel free to reach out to me or join my email list for more tips on how to level up your social media marketing. You CAN do this!