Creating cohesion and consistent branding is essential for marketing products and services, even within social media. In fact, you could probably argue that it is even more important, since your brand is floating in a giant sea of images and icons.
Social media is a crowded space, and churches, ministries and nonprofits need to be doing the same thing as branding professionals for Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube and more.
Here are five social media marketing design essentials you should be following:
5 Social Media Marketing Design Essentials
1. Use Your Color Palette
Have you established a color palette? If you have a logo and website — and hopefully it matches and looks awesome — you already have an established color palette.
And please, please, don’t depart from it. Your first step in your social media marketing design should be to write down your hex codes, so you can refer to them whenever you’re creating graphics, promos, etc…
2. Pick Your Font
What fonts should you be using in your designs? If you are promoting a Easter service, a youth group sponsored movie night or designing your church bulletin, you should have consistency with your font selection.
I recommend you pick two or three fonts that represent your brand. Again, this may already be decided in what’s been chosen for your website — not that you couldn’t change your website while you figure out all your design elements.
In the end, having fonts and colors already picked for you, will make creating social media images, announcements and banners super quick and easy to make. Moreover, if this work has been already done by a creative professional, even someone who feels a little “under qualified” creatively can create images for social media.
Speaking of images…
3. Photo Filters
Colors: check. Fonts: check. This one may catch you be surprise: photo filters!
Certain photo filters — think: Instagram, Photoshop, PicMonkey — look better with certain fonts and color palettes than others. I encourage you to figure out what filter or two looks best with your brand, and stick to those filters.
While this may seem “boring,” it will ultimately reinforce your brand.
4. Logo #ALLTHETHINGS
Well, you would not have to place your logo on everything, but it isn’t a bad idea. If you have a logo like ChurchMag — it is more of a mark than a logo — you can easily stamp it on everything you produce. How often you slap your logo/mark on your social media will really depend on how good or agile your logo/mark is.
5. Be Consistent!
All of this is a waste of time if you are not consistent! That is the point of marketing and branding. If you’re not being consistent, you’re not doing it right.
Imagine if McDonalds, Coca-Cola or Ikea used different fonts, colors and design templates all of the time?
It would be a mess!
Do not let your church, ministry or nonprofit suffer in this way. Establish these basic design elements and stick to them. Not only will it make your content creation easier in the end, but your brand will also have some awesome cohesion.
There are some exceptions — kind of.
ChurchMag is currently leveraging their social media design to promote the ChurchMag Matrix. While this slightly deviates from the established branding of ChurchMag — only by changing the primary color — we are able to continue being consistent in our branding while promoting something new at the same time.
Here’s our website:
You’ll notice the ad at the top, the rest of design stays the same.
But our social media — while cohesive and keeping with logos, fonts and style — slightly deviates in an effort to promote something new:
You get the idea. 🙂
While it may seem like these social media design essentials will limit your creativity, you can see by this example that it can actually expand your creativity — all the while continuing to reinforce your brand.
It is a win-win.