When it comes to brand identity in social media, visual style is equally as important as tone of voice, it is the punch of an image that always seems to catch our attention. Graphic Design can play a crucial role in customer engagement, but how can this be approached?

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Here are our top 4 Graphic design tips for social media.

1. Focus on the audience

Knowing, understanding and catering for your target audience is essential in graphic design. It is the gateway to grabbing (and holding) their attention and aims to provoke a response. For example, if your audience have a love for technology, make sure the image is rooted and driven by this.  Once you fully understand the people you are creating visuals for, it makes the design process easier and more direct. It also allows you to gain insight on what to avoid.

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2. Evoke emotion

Motivational messaging and positive content is a desirable trend in design. It is important the image created makes the consumer think or question the message that is being conveyed through an image. Michael Wolff, a designer responsible for the identity of Shell, BT and many other high profile brands once said “Emotion is the most important component in graphic design”. So, if you can make the viewer burst out in laughter, stare in admiration or reflect and learn something new, you are instantly building connections and becoming relatable.

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3. Cause for conversation

Creating images that relate to current issues or events can be great for user engagement. For example, designs can be linked to a yearly celebration such as Valentine’s Day or by featuring a summer theme, as these things can help spark conversation amongst users. A good example of this comes from the work of Erik Marinovich, Co-Creator of lettering blog FriendsofType.com. Currently boasting a following of 34.5k followers on Instagram, and having created an off the cuff design around the San Francisco Giant baseball team, Marinovich automatically struck a chord with his baseball fan followers and got them talking about rival teams and upcoming games. If you’re aiming for memorable design that stands the test of time, create artwork that acts as a mark on a calendar.

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4. Keep it direct

British graphic design legend Abram Games once said “Maximum meaning, minimum means”. By reducing unwanted layers and getting straight to the point, you can create a bigger impact upon viewers. It is important to go back to the basics of a project, understand your aims and pack purpose into an image. Instagram heavyweights and kings of coffee Starbucks once posted an image inviting followers to their Snapchat page. The image they created to support this was simply the Snapchat ghost logo holding coffee in the iconic red Starbucks cups. With the vivid use of the yellow and contrasting red cups this post stood out amongst their usual posts, and in turn got them 169,459 likes. This shows the power of keeping it simple and to the point.

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If you are looking for help creating effective graphic design for social media, talk to us and discover how we can provide tailored campaigns, aligned to your business needs.