Creating Social Media Graphics in Canva: Best Practices for Big Results

Businesses of all sizes benefit from a strong social media presence. But what your social media presence does for your business totally depends on how effectively you use these channels. Yes, the type of content you post and the quality and consistency of your social media graphics matter more than quantity.

Okay, so how do you create good quality social media graphics that reflect your brand identity positively? One of your options is an online tool like Canva. Because then you have access to ready-to-use templates, a wide range of design elements, and convenient customization options. 

And to be sure that you are making the most of your Canva subscription and utilizing every new feature that arrives, you can also work with Canva designers. The designs are there in your account for you to revisit and tweak them further if required. Additionally, you also get that professional touch in your designs. 

Whether you choose to work with Canva designers or take up the design task in your own hands, you need to balance both form and functionality in your social media graphics. Because on visually-driven platforms you cannot compromise the aesthetics. And given that your brand’s reputation is at stake you cannot lose out on the message. Want to hear some tips that help you achieve this balance? Let’s go! 

Types of social media graphics you can create on Canva + tips 

Profile picture

The profile picture on your social media page often makes the first virtual handshake on behalf of your brand. Whether you are a solopreneur building your personal brand or a marketer setting up a brand’s social media page, the weight the profile picture carries remains the same. 

The profile picture needs to be 

  • Relevant 
  • Unique 
  • On-brand 

For a brand page, the idea is simple – you are going to use your brand’s logo. In such cases, going with a clear high-quality version of your logo image will be all it takes. Avoid confusing backgrounds and colors because you want your brand colors to shine. 

Solopreneurs sculpting their personal brand should focus on the choice of colors in the image. Get a professional headshot done for the best first impression. Then comes the part where you remove the background which is easy with Canva’s background removal option. Any color or texture you add to the background should complement your outfit in the headshot and let your photo be the focal point rather than distracting customers away from the photo. 

KIMP Tips: 

The recommended dimensions of the profile picture vary from one platform to another. By working with Canva templates you can quickly start creating in the respective recommended dimensions. With the Pro and Teams account, Canva also lets you resize your designs conveniently and so you do not have to worry about creating the designs from scratch for each platform. 

But if you think that you need to get really creative with how you customize the templates or perhaps combine the idea from two or more templates, work with Canva designers to make your job simpler. 

Banner/cover image 

A stunning profile picture and an informative banner image go hand-in-hand. Together they tell your brand’s story. And designed right they even end up convincing your page visitors that it’s worth staying a little longer exploring the content on your page. In fact, your profile picture and banner image are the most crucial social media graphics with respect to establishing your brand on social media. 

Besides all this, on places like YouTube, Facebook, and LinkedIn, your banner image occupies a significant portion of the profile page in view. That’s definitely a good enough reason to pay more attention to your social media banner or cover image. 

The below image gives a snapshot of some of the YouTube banner templates on Canva. As you can see, you get to explore a variety of visual themes. 

KIMP Tips: 

When you do use Canva to create your social media banner image, here are a few things to remember: 

  • While the standard Canva templates help create a horizontal image perfect for social media banners, the actual dimensions supported vary from time to time. Additionally, based on the device where the design is viewed, portions of your banner image tend to be trimmed off. YouTube, for example, recommends a dimension of 2048 x 1152 for best results on all devices. So, create a clutter-free design where the critical elements of branding and the core information are centered in the layout. 
  • Also, understand the safe zones in design. On YouTube, you have the links to other social media pages displayed in the bottom right corner. On LinkedIn and Facebook, your profile picture covers a portion of the banner image in the bottom left. So, you do not want any text or even your brand logo to appear in these areas. 
Image posts 
Canva design by KIMP 

In today’s digital landscape, social media has transformed into an immersive visual journey. While videos are gaining traction, the power of still images remains unparalleled. Whether you’re unveiling a business update, showcasing product features, or encouraging user interaction through thought-provoking questions, images excel at capturing attention and conveying messages effectively.

Therefore, a majority of your efforts and time in creating social media graphics goes into creating images for various social media platforms. Canva simplifies this with its templates categorized as Twitter post, Facebook post, Instagram post, Pinterest Pin, and others. 

For example, these are some of the Twitter post templates available:

So, if you find a layout you like or a theme that resonates the most with your image post idea, you can instantly customize the theme by using your brand colors and brand fonts from your Brand Hub. 

KIMP Tips: 

  • Canva Pro comes with a whole bunch of editing options and design elements. To truly make your designs stand out, use unique photos, text overlays, the right combination of fonts, and other ideas. 
  • With Canva Pro you can also instantly resize the created design to a custom dimension. Or you can also quickly use the existing options like Story Post, Facebook Cover, Phone Wallpaper, Book Cover, Desktop Wallpaper, and other designs. 
  • Adding variety to your social media page enhances its appeal and captivates your audience. Incorporate a diverse range of content formats such as thought-provoking quote posts, engaging infographics, entertaining memes, and other shareable elements. This eclectic mix keeps your page fresh, encourages interaction, and ensures your audience remains engaged.
Video posts 

While image posts set the stage, video posts take the engagement on your social media pages to the next level. On platforms like Facebook, video posts have been known to amplify engagement by a staggering 600%.

To harness the power of videos, it’s essential to create a balanced mix of short-form and long-form content. Unsure about the types of videos that can enhance reach and engagement on your social media page? Here are a few suggestions to kickstart your video creation journey:

  • Product or service demos
  • Explainer videos
  • Product launch teasers
  • Customer testimonials
  • Unboxing videos
  • Behind-the-scenes glimpses
  • Bloopers to showcase your business’s human side

Leveraging Canva, you can ensure your videos are optimized with the appropriate dimensions. The editing process presents an opportunity for creative customization, including captivating text animations, engaging photo animations, and seamless page transitions. However, it’s crucial to strike a balance and avoid overwhelming your viewers with excessive and confusing animations. Maintaining clarity of the core message should always take precedence over flashy effects. 

If you are looking to create generic videos that work well with stock clips then Canva is a great place. But if you have custom footage that you wish to edit and drastically alter the aesthetics and transitions in the video or even add custom logo animations to it, a professional video editing team might seem like a more convenient option. 

Canva video animation by KIMP
Story posts 

Story posts are those captivating visuals that fill your screen, grabbing your attention for mere seconds. Those precious seconds are crucial to make an impact. They determine whether your audience will pause and take notice or swiftly swipe away, forgetting your brand and message on your Story.

Story posts, when utilized effectively, drive consistent engagement and compel your audience to regularly visit your social media page. They serve as a platform to ask questions, conduct polls, and share quick process videos.

To maximize the potential of Story posts, it’s vital to create attention-grabbing designs that align with your brand. Explore the Canva Story post templates collection for inspiration, including:

  • Collages to showcase products
  • Illustrated icons to tell a story
  • Image-centered posts
  • Detailed product-focused Story posts with multiple links

KIMP Tips:

Instead of creating random graphics for your Story, create a series of connected designs. For this, you need to lay down the objective of the Story posts and then build a story arc that can be illustrated through images. Adding interactive elements like Stickers makes the experience worthwhile. 

Furthermore, ensure that your Story posts include a clear call-to-action (CTA) to accomplish their purpose effectively.

Canva design by KIMP 
Social media ads 

One effective way to advertise on social media is by promoting your top-performing posts. This strategy may attract more people to your page and increase your follower count. However, to effectively drive website traffic, enhance brand awareness, or introduce new products custom social media ads offer an advantage.

With custom ads, you can create promotional content for both standard Feed promotions and engaging Story ads. The key distinction between regular social media posts and ads lies in the inclusion of a clear call-to-action (CTA) within the ad. While regular posts aim to encourage likes, shares, and comments, ads are designed to drive conversions through clicks, form submissions, and other actions.

Canva design by KIMP 

Considering that ads require more effort from your audience, it is crucial to design graphics that are compelling enough to motivate them to take action. Opt for clear visuals and legible fonts that effectively convey your message. If you’re concerned about finding the perfect font combinations for your designs, Canva offers a comprehensive collection of font pairs to help you get started.

Video thumbnails 

Even the best videos on social media might not get the views or engagement intended if they do not have the right thumbnails. On YouTube, your thumbnails tell users whether to click on your video or not. Moreover, these thumbnails also contribute to building a strong brand identity on your YouTube page, instantly conveying the video’s content to potential viewers.

With scrollable video content like Reels and TikTok videos, thumbnails might not look like much. But remember that they paint a picture of your brand when a visitor checks out your social media page.  In such cases, consistent and cohesive thumbnails add a touch of professionalism and reinforce your brand image.

In summary, thumbnails play a vital role in the design of both short-form and long-form video posts. They should be clear, visually appealing, and representative of your brand. You may have questions about which elements to include, such as headshots or product photos, or what type of text to incorporate. Canva’s extensive collection of thumbnail templates can address these concerns.

Whether you’re focused on a specific niche or aiming to achieve a particular video objective, you’ll find a wide variety of designs that perfectly align with your needs.

Want to hear about a dependable way to tackle all the video design categories on Canva? Choose KIMP’s Canva Plus subscription. Professional video designers and graphic designers who can work on unlimited designs for your brand every month! 

Social media templates 

There are some kinds of social media graphics that you redesign every single time. But there are others that need to look consistent. They should maintain a recognizable format, including the arrangement of design elements, framing, text, and more. This ensures they serve their intended purpose effectively.

In such situations, Canva offers the option to create custom branded templates. This allows you to reuse the same layout for all designs within a specific category. For instance, if you frequently share user reviews, having a standardized template enables you to quickly edit the review section while maintaining a consistent look. Whenever users encounter this template on your page, they instantly recognize it as user reviews.

Similarly, when working on specific themes like throwback-Thursday or tip-Tuesday, defining templates for these themes fosters a sense of connection in your design. Consistency in these templates keeps users engaged and eager for more. 

So, custom branded templates are some of the most useful types of social media graphics to create on Canva. 

Make the most of Canva graphics with KIMP 

Undoubtedly, Canva provides a wide range of social media graphic categories to explore, each available in various formats. The crucial aspect lies in maximizing the editing capabilities offered by this tool and discovering the most effective methods to customize these designs according to your brand and message. If you’re looking to streamline this process and achieve impeccable results, why not consider leveraging the expertise of Canva designers? They can assist you in perfecting every step of the way. And how do you do that? Get KIMP!

Book a demo now to understand how this subscription can help you tweak your Canva designs better!