How many times have you heard the saying “A picture is worth a thousand words”? It’s become cliché, but it’s true. People respond to images more often and with greater enthusiasm than they do with text-only content.
When it comes to marketing and engagement, it’s no secret that images are continuing to be a huge factor. Multiple studies have shown the importance of including relevant, engaging images in your blog posts or social media messages.
But what if you’re not a marketer? What if you just want to get your friends’ attention with a Facebook event invitation? Those mid-summer BBQs are more fun if people actually attend, right?
Or maybe you host a Twitter chat centered around a topic you love. I host our weekly Twitter chat, and I’ve found that having images with our questions (as suggested by my edtech friends Lisa Nielsen and Eileen Lennon) has increased the number of people we have answering.
Images can play a key role in those types of social media posts, too. Our eyes can glaze over when we read or skim text; they POP! when they see images.
To help guide you on your social media image creation adventure, we’ve put together this blueprint for success.
We’ll start by giving you the image sizes and dimensions for each of the major social platforms so that none of your hard work has to be cropped out at the end. Then we’ll walk you through the process of creating a perfectly presented image in Piktochart. We’ve even gathered some suggestions for ways to add some flair and additional awesomeness to your social media images.
So whether you’re a marketer or blogger looking to engage with your audience, or you’re in charge of making the Facebook invitation to the annual block party, we’ve got you covered when it comes to making that eye-catching, socially shared visual. Let’s get started!
Image Sizes by Platform
Through the magic of Google Sheets and the hard work of the folks over at HubSpot, here’s an always up-to-date list of image dimensions for the top social networks:
Making Great Social Media Visuals
Now that you know what size your visuals need to be, let’s talk about how to create and optimize them in Piktochart. First, we’ll walk through the steps of making a basic image, then we’ll talk about some of the ways Piktochart can help you add some flair and variety to your new creations.
Steps to Creating in Piktochart
- Choose Poster on our Piktochart template page – it’s a one-block format with a size you can easily customize.
- Select a template – look for elements or a color palette that correspond to your message, or start from scratch using a blank canvas.
- Resize your poster – Select the block and click the gear icon. This will allow you to pick the height and width you want. After entering your dimensions, make sure to hit Enter/Return to apply them.
- Work on your imagery: There are a few different ways for you to personalize and customize your images:
- Change the background or add an image – you can choose from a variety of colors or patterns for a simple background, or you can spice it up by adding your own.
- Choose from our selection of images – you can browse through several categories including Lifestyle, People, Landscape, and more.
- Upload your own image – there are many awesome free photography sites that you can use to find beautiful images that tend to look less mainstream that typical stock photography.
- Add your text – Keep your font choices to a minimum for better consistency. You can adjust their size if needed (bigger size for the heading, smaller one for the subheading), but try to keep it simple.
- Add extra elements – while it’s best to keep your small visual simple, you can also consider adding:
- vertical or horizontal lines – to divide your text
- your company’s logo – it’s best to use .png images with transparent backgrounds
- icons that support your message – you can choose simple icons from our library and change their opacity so that they don’t steal away the attention from the main elements
- Save and download your work, or share it directly on social media using our Share menu.
Ways Piktochart Can Optimize Your Images
Add a Text Frame or Icon for Special Flair
Facebook now lets you add a photo frame to show your support for a team or cause. That’s great and all, but your choices are limited to what Facebook allows and what has been uploaded or added by approved pages.
Source: The Next Web
How great would it be to choose your own frame or icon to support a cause of your own? You can add a simple pink ribbon to show your support for Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, or put the Olympic rings in the corner of your profile photo in preparation for the 2016 Olympics.
Use a photo frame to mask an image and add a unique and special touch to your profile photo. Edit the text, change it up and make it your own!
Add Shadow Box + Text Overlay for Twitter Announcements
One of the ways we’ve been using Piktochart for social media images is by creating Twitter announcement images. Including these images helps people engage with our tweets on a more visual level. A great example of this are our PiktoTour announcements.
We start by changing the canvas size to 800 px (for a square inline photo that’ll work for Twitter and Instagram) Then, we uploaded an image of a city that’s appropriate for the “tour” motif. The next step is a bit of a hack. We add a “filter” screen block with a limited transparency. This adds contrast between the background and the text and images we’ve laid over the top.
The final steps are simple: we add an icon for interest, some text blocks and interesting fonts with the essential info, and then we export the image. If we need to make another one (and we will because we want to host PiktoTours everywhere!), we can choose to “Save as…” the creation and then edit the text in the new copy to talk about our Pikto-destination!
Combine those to Make Your Own Text Frame by Stacking Fonts
Now we’re getting into some Piktochart expert level image creation. By combining skills I used in both of the previous examples, I can create the kind of super engaging images that show up constantly in your Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest feeds.
We’d love to see some of your social media image creations! Drop a link in the comments or tweet at us. We can’t wait to see what you dream up!