Tips for Social Media Graphics

Social Media Graphics

Social media graphics are a useful resource for any business that is active on social media and looking to incorporate more original and engaging content into their posting schedule. Use the following tips to help guide your social media graphic design decisions.

You may have a lot to say, but less is more

We’ve all got a message to convey, but social media is all about instant gratification, and humans are visual by nature. Too much text becomes overwhelming very quickly, so designers must simplify, and try to communicate as much as possible using mainly imagery, and minimal text. Your image will be accompanied by a caption anyway, so why waste the valuable opportunity to capture audience attention with a striking image by slapping your caption over it?

To save a bit of time and effort, you can turn to stock imagery and play with compositions to make it your own. When searching for images, think about editorial approaches, and always place any text over empty space in the visual. This will not detract from the image you choose, make your type easily readable, easily digestible, and ultimately more shareable.

If you plan to pay for exposure, be familiar with the rules of promoting posts on every platform you use before you create your image. For example, to promote a post with a graphic on Facebook, the image can’t contain more than 20% text. Keep it simple and concise, and only include the most important information to capture and keep viewers’ attention. Your visual should make them want to read the caption and learn more.

Image quality is key

A good image grabs your followers’ attention, but it can also boost your brand’s credibility and professionalism. The quality of the material you promote is a reflection of your brand. Keep that in mind when choosing stock imagery or illustration for your graphics.

For example, a non-profit organization’s messages might have to do with awareness regarding their cause. Appropriate imagery will convey the right emotion and tone in the context of your message.

Serious topics and impactful messages are best conveyed using high quality photos and carefully chosen typefaces. Keep your message clear and simple, and let your chosen image evoke the desired emotion. When you want a more dynamic and lighthearted graphic, you can go for flat illustration. Use simple shapes, thoughtful color choices, and negative space to convey your message.

Keep it fresh

We know visual content is the most powerful way to engage your audience on social media. Before starting designs, think about what resonates with your audience and what doesn’t. Here are a few different types of graphic posts you can draw from for inspiration. Mix it up to add variety.


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Can help your fans connect with what your brand is all about. Let the brand’s “personality” shine and give your audience the “feels!”

If they really relate to the message you post, they’re more likely to share your post with their own friends. Emotional Marketing can be very powerful!


Draw a lot of attention, making them a good tool for captivating your audience. Remember the basics: infographics explain or teach something in a simple visual without overwhelming your readers with too much text. When designing infographics, think about the path you want your readers to follow and fill that path with great graphics that help you tell your story visually, accompanied by small snippets of text only when necessary.

Flat Illustration

Is a minimalistic design approach that emphasizes usability. Illustrations use clean, open space, crisp edges, eye-catching color combinations, and two-dimensional shapes.

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Your color choices and use of space will make illustrations and buttons pop against their backgrounds, easily grab attention, and guide the user’s eye. The simplicity and visual appeal of this style captures audience attention as they scroll through their feed. When done effectively, illustrations can draw curious potential customers to click on your page.


Is a huge asset. If you have the time and resources to do so, capturing high-quality, original photos to use in your social media posts is one of the most valuable things you can do for your profile.

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Original photo content is one of the best-performing types of social media content. It gives your followers a peek behind the scenes and helps them relate to your business on a personal level. The more original photos you post, the more reactions you’ll get.

Inspiration comes from unexpected places

When you feel like you’ve hit a design block or your audience isn’t interacting with your material, change gears and do some research. Staying current on social media trends can help you connect with your audience much more effectively.

Peruse websites like Pinterest, Tumblr and design sites that show you the best current work from other designers. Keeping your finger on the pulse of what’s happening now and seeing the work that really performs well can help you find elements that your own work is lacking. Maybe your photo quality is poor, or your typefaces are too difficult to read, or your quote choices are not resonating with your audience. Draw inspiration, try different approaches, and test, test, test!


Never stop observing your surroundings and the work of other designers. Analyze advertisements you see in your daily life. Always keeping an open mind and constantly feeding your “design brain” will help you produce more and better ideas every day.

Branding your graphic

Branded Graphics Collage

Branding involves more than slapping a logo on something. Successful and shareable social media content keeps people coming back to your page, and helps with top-of-mind awareness. When your viewers see similar colors and styles in your graphics, they’ll start recognizing your brand even without the help of a logo. Stick to a consistent design aesthetic throughout for best results. If you don’t have any branding guidelines in place, developing them should be your top priority.

Share, share, and share some more

A great post deserves a great audience, but gaining exposure takes a bit of work. Promoting and sharing can effectively increase incoming traffic to your page with minimal financial investment. Get employees involved by encouraging them to like and share the content your company posts. Their interaction with it will increase the post’s reach to their contacts, who may in turn interact with the content, and so on.

Go forth and design!

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