looks matter: how to make your graphics and social accounts pop
It’s really not that hard to tell when there’s been little to no effort put into visual content - and you don’t even have to work in the world of content creation to be able to recognize it. We absorb visual content every day: billboards, commercials, websites, Instagram photos; the list is endless. But we are more apt to pay attention to the visual content we are absorbing when it’s visually appealing.
The frustrating thing is that creating visually appealing content isn’t always easy, but making sure this is done right is going to be one of the most critical parts to your success in the content creation world.
As someone who spends every week creating and editing content, one of the biggest life savers has been the use of templates. I’m not talking about pre-made templates that you find and use for your own purposes (although those are nice too) but rather creating something from scratch and saving the template for future use under the same circumstances of its original creation.
This is great for two reasons:
1. It will save you a TON of time the next time you want to make content using the same design/style because really all you’ll have to do is fill in the blanks (insert a video, insert a photo, update a title or date, etc.)
2. It assures that your content will all have the same design and theme which is what you should always be aiming for.
So let’s talk about that--why it’s important that your content is consistent in style. I’ve talked about this in a previous blog post, but consistency in your visuals makes your brand more recognizable not only to your true and loyal followers but also to those random people who may stumble across your content from time to time and are wondering why the heck your content keeps popping up and maybe it’s time they finally check it out. Likely the only reason a “non-follower” will recognize your content is if consistently looks the same to them when they stumble across it.
Good visuals are also important because it shows EFFORT. Yes, if only creating good and appealing work was simple wouldn’t all our lives be a little easier? But it’s really not all that simple and, you know what, I think that’s just fine. Because that means there needs to be effort put in to stand out and that makes the process feel more rewarding. So, take the time to make sure the camera is in focus when you film, to make sure the graphics are the right sizes for each platform you’re putting them on (yes every platform is different, ugh I know), to make sure fonts are readable and colors are true to your brand. And double check EVERYTHING. Sometimes you can go back and fix something once it’s posted, a YouTube thumbnail for example (which I’ve done plenty of) and sometimes you can’t fix it without deleting the entire thing, like an Instagram post.
Just think for a moment about your personal life and your experience with surfing the web or searching for YouTube videos, for example. What do you gravitate toward? If you’re like most people, you gravitate toward clean looking, organized, readable, visuals whether that’s a website, photo, video or even just a graphic telling you to go check something out. While you’re creating visuals think: “If I saw this content while surfing the web, would I want to know more about the brand, company, or person who made this?” If your answer is no, then get back to work because you still have some editing to do.
For me, creating visual content to support your brand is one of the most fun parts of having a brand or a company. It’s where you can be most creative and a way to show people that you care about the presentation of your brand. You put a lot of work into making your brand or company matter, don’t let bad visuals be the reason someone turns away.