How to Use Canva To Create Graphics + Build Your Visual Arsenal
"I'm not a designer" "Photoshop makes my eyes glaze over" "I want to create visually stunning graphics that attract the right audience to my brand"
These are some of the frustrations that I hear over and over again from fellow entrepreneurs that want to step up their design game but are not sure how to do it.
Well folks, I'm just going to state for the record:
I struggled with these same issues for a while, until I launched this brand earlier this year.
My Struggle With Consistent Branding and Visual Design
As I initially stated, for years I struggled with branding, visual design and just pretty much trying to create a cohesive look + feel for my brand.
I tried using programs like Photoshop, but got easily frustrated with trying to figure out how to use it. Then I tried using PicMonkey, but I didn't like the fact that I could not save my work.
Then one day I decided to sign up for an account on Canva. I used it to create a few blog post images …but nothing else.
Even though I had been using Canva for a little while I didn't realize the full potential of this platform until launching YourChicGeek.
I would sit around for hours creating one different branded design after another (HOURS people). Then one day, I after setting up shop on Pinterest, I started looking around at some of the other designs there.
What I noticed was that the designs that were getting the most re-pins, shares and likes all had one thing in common:
There was a consistent look and feel to their designs!
This my friends, was a hugeeee game changer for me and the way that I moved forward with designing graphics for my brand. These days, Canva is now a staple in my brand + a resource that I use every day for designing graphics and visual designs for YourChicGeek.
Canva is an online platform that you can use to create super gorgeous visual designs + documents for your brand.
What I loveeee about Canva is that in the dashboard of the platform, there are templates for nearly every type of design you can think of like: presentations, social media profile covers, blog graphics, flyers, postcards, resumes, banners, eBook covers and CD covers.
When I launched this brand earlier this year, I made a promise to myself to get really serious about stepping up my visual design game. I took the time to learn how to use Canva to create graphics that:
Would be easily shared on social media networks
Would increase engagement, shares, likes Repins and Retweets
Stood out from the sea of millions
So far, it has really been working!
Now, I want to make this point clear, I am all about investing in your brand + in tools for building your business.
However, I also know from spending tonnnns of money (to the tune of thousands) in the past, that you also want to be very intentional about where you are investing money into your business.
Because at the end of the day, you want to make a return on your investments.
Why Attractive Visual Content and Graphic Design Matters
Earlier this year, Hubspot published an article that covered that is armed with stats about the importance of visual design. I felt compelled to share these stats with you to stress the importance of using visuals with your marketing:
Content with relevant images gets 94% more views than content without relevant images (KissMetrics)
Visual content is more than 40X more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content (Buffer Blog)
Researchers found that colored visuals increase people's willingness to read a piece of content by 80% (Xerox)
I admit, I have definitely noticed an increase in engagement and shares across the board when I share posts with graphics vs. posts without them.
How I Use Canva to Design Graphics for My Brand + Build My Visual Arsenal
One of the questions that I get alllll of the time from fellow entrepreneurs and peeps that I run into online is:
Kim, what are you using to design your branded graphics + images on your blog?
When I tell them Canva, they are floored! But it's true! I use Canva to design all of the graphics that I use for my brand such as:
My Branded Blog Post Graphics
Remember when I stated earlier that I used to spend hours creating branded images for my blog posts? Soooo, I finally figured out how to create a branded image in Canva, and use it over and over again for future images.
Branded Blog Image – Designed with Canva
My Product Images + Covers
Yeppers, that's right folks! I used Canva to create all of my product images and graphics that I sell from my store.
Startup Like a CHAMP Workbook – Designed with Canva
Blogging for Business Toolkit + Planner Workbook – Designed with Canva
Lead Magnets, Opt Ins + Content Upgrades
For every blog post that I write, I tend to add a lead magnet or some type of incentive to the end of the posts. If you ever wondered what I was using to design these freebies, it is non other than Canva my friends.
Lead Magnet + Pinnable – Designed with Canva
Promo + Advertisement Materials
When I first collaborated with my good friend Shannon of InkPensnCoffeecups, we wanted to create some sort of promotional and marketing items to get the word out about our 31 Day PRO Startup Challenge.
31 Day Pro Flyer – Designed with Canva
Well peeps, I used Canva to create our marketing + promo flyers for this event andddd as I mentioned before, to also design the 31 Day Pro Workbook that accompanies this challenge.
31 Day PRO Workbook – Designed with Canva
As you can see, I have used Canva to build a complete visual arsenal for my brand. The best part of it all is that it didnt cost me anything to create these designs. All I used was just a little bit of creativity and planning on my part to get er done.
How To Use Canva To Create Graphics For Your Brand + Build Your Arsenal
For starters sign up for an account with Canva if you don't already have one
Figure out what types of graphics you want to design for your brand + use Canva to Create them.
Select a template in Canva, open it then start designing!
For branding purposes, try to design your graphics cohesively that have the same look and feel as your brand (color palettes, style and etc.,)
Here's a quick video that I put together that shows you how to design a blog post image with Canva! I am telling you…Canva is the #Truth!
Great Visual Design and Attractive Branding Attracts Customers and Calls them to Action
If you are a:
Small business owner, blogger or solopreneur that wants to brand your business with confidence, the Lights Canva Action course lays it all out for you!
After I decided to step up my visual marketing game, I noticed a hugeee improvement in the engagement from my blog and on my social media networks. This is what led me to creating the Lights Canva Action course workshop for business owners.