How to get eye-catching creative designs on social media

Great images can speak more in a millisecond than any amount of words. How do you compete in a crowded marketplace, however? Today the online marketing experts from the Zebra 360 Digital Marketing Agency team give you a quick lesson in how to streamline your images for creativity and eye-catching effect.

Know your basics

There’s some basics to all social media marketing strategies that we’ve looked at before. This includes the power of well-chosen colour to influence mood, and how contrast can also create a powerful impact. We’ve also looked at how fonts can convey mood, tone, and catch the eye. Then there’s the power of balancing elements and using spacing well within the ‘frame’ of the image, and using scale to draw the eye and place emphasis where you want it. There’s also some things you know instinctively- like how very straight elements give an ordered feeling, while curvy lines and waves hint at movement. Clean angled lines can pull the eye where you want it, and so on.

These are some very simple concepts- in fact, some of them are so simple you’re probably thinking, “That can’t matter, can it?’’ You’d be surprised how even tweaking these small elements- and making sure they’re consistent through campaigns and branding efforts- can make your images pop!

Four online creative design tips you should know

Now you’ve checked that you’re starting from a solid foundation, let’s look at four more in-depth- but simple- tricks you can use to take your online marketing efforts to new heights.

  1. Hierarchy

What does this mean? Place the most important things in the biggest fonts, or best locations.  Every element of a design should be important, of course, but there’sCreative design for eye catching social media posts always one key element or message to deliver, and you want it to stand out first. Understand your campaign goal, then search out the crucial message that must be delivered. Use those basic design principles we mentioned to position this so it stands out. Then add in other aspects and elements as needed to finish off. Even very simple things- like a motivational picture or quote image- can use this to go from blah to BRILLIANT.

  1. Repetition

We’ve spoken about consistency across your branding efforts, and how it builds up both a ‘personality’ for your brand and helps the consumer identify you easily. Repetition builds on this notion. Fonts, colour palettes, and logos should always be the same across your campaigns. Use the same look on company stationery as on your business card. Use one logo across everything from your website to your coffee cup. Don’t let ‘older’ designs linger until used, ready to confuse buyers. Repetition builds recognition.

  1. Direction

This is a more complex notion, based on how the eye consumes things. Humans each ‘read’ an image differently, but it’s pretty consistent among us. Three key

Creative design for Social Media

patterns have been identified, which can be simplified as the shapes ‘Z’, ‘E’, and ‘F’. These are all pretty consistent in that they consume the upper left, and the left side in general, with greater importance- so place your most important elements there, and try to lead the eye as you wish from there.

Interestingly, how you were raised to read will affect this- in nations where one reads right to left, and not left to right as most South Africans do, this is reversed. This is why we’re fans of reminding you that knowing your audience matters!

  1. Space

Do you know what ‘negative space’ means in an image? It refers to an empty (so mostly white) space within your image, where the ‘absence’ of visual input is used as part of the message. Sometimes, what you leave out matters as much as what you put in! 

It ties into a simplistic design trend that suits social media marketing well. It can impart sleek aesthetics, and highlight what you need to emphasise. You’ve probably seen this used in Instagram photography very commonly of late, where ‘knolling’, or surrounding elements of the image in their own clear space, is used to give each element its own power.

And there you have it! With these 4 easy, yet powerful, image design elements on your side, you’ll take your digital marketing efforts from good to WOW in no time! Remember, Zebra 360 Digital Marketing Agency also has a superb digital creative design team ready to help you if you want to boost your brand image and perform your best.