Nowadays, having a strong presence on social media has become imperative for any business that wants to succeed. However, marketing for social media is something that most companies haven’t fully mastered. Traditional marketing approaches sometimes don’t translate directly to social media platforms, so marketing executives must get creative. Since social networks come with built-in trends and audience expectations, marketers must also figure out the best ways to design for social media. As a Chicago marketing agency, we have helped many clients find the best way to handle their social media profiles. Today, we would like to share some of our experiences with you and point out 7 social media design mistakes to avoid.
1) Not using vertical video
Written content and long-form articles are essential for creating a strong online presence. However, we have recently seen a massive surge in the popularity of vertical video. TikTok has caused other platforms to scramble to incorporate vertical video formats. YouTube introduced ‘Shorts‘ as a short-form vertical video format, and Facebook recently announced they would be making changes to integrate more video content. These changes mean that if you want to stay relevant and visible on social media, you must adapt and create the type of content in demand. Editing and publishing horizontal videos is one of the most critical social media design mistakes to avoid. You can hire professionals to create and edit video content and use social media algorithms to get a leg up on the competition.
2) Using unoptimized images
When optimizing images for websites and social media, we run into the ‘Goldilocks and the three bears’ problem. If your images are too small, they will look blurry because small images will need to get stretched. Unfortunately, using pixelated and blurry images on your business profile looks unprofessional and can send the wrong message to your audience. On the other hand, high-resolution images will probably get automatically downscaled. This process can also result in jagged edges or unwanted artifacts on your photos. The ideal solution would be to optimize the images by hand before uploading them. Remember that different social platforms may prefer specific image formats and sizes. You can learn about optimizing website images and make them clear and engaging for use on social media. Properly optimized images will make your profile look modern and professional.
3) A one-size-fits-all approach
Business owners who have a company website sometimes feel it’s a waste of time to design additional assets for social media. Most would prefer to directly port over the assets and content they already use on their website. Unfortunately, as previously mentioned, this approach won’t work for images, videos, or written articles. Simply put, users consume content differently on social media than on websites. They are also interested in shorter content, so long-form articles and videos might not be the best choice. Thankfully, you can get help to audit your social media profiles and hire a team that can help you redesign your existing assets.
4) Poor use of space
You have to realize that most users access social networks through mobile devices. Regardless of the device’s native resolution, a smartphone’s screen size will be severely limited. There are several social media design mistakes to avoid here. Firstly, when designing assets that are intended to take up the whole screen, such as high-resolution images and videos, you should try to utilize the entire screen. Having a large picture where the only content is in the middle is a waste of space. You can use that space to give additional information about your products and business.
On the other hand, your company profile shouldn’t feel too cluttered. Your profile may confuse users if you try to jam in too many buttons and features. Leave enough empty space to let the essential design elements stand out. Showing restraint and utilizing white space is a critical design skill you will need to learn.
5) Your design doesn’t appeal to the right audience
Contrary to popular belief, there isn’t only one good design that will get you noticed on social media. Your overall design choices must reflect your company values and appeal to your target audience. Find what your audience is interested in, and adjust your design accordingly. For example, if your audience is young and hip, you can use bright colors and striking images to draw their attention. Digital marketing experts recommend extensive research into your ideal customer. You can use that information to improve your online presence and customer reach.
6) The fonts you use are hard to read
Graphic design requires a typeface to add text to images and videos. Your choice of font can have an immense impact on how users perceive your social media posts. First, the font you choose must be legible and easy to read. We recommend picking something that stands out rather than a font that looks pretty. Of course, the font style should match the message you are trying to convey. If you want to come across as serious and professional, choose a font with straight lines and sharp edges. However, if you want to leave a more relaxed and casual impression, you can use curvy fonts that look handwritten.
7) Your visual design is inconsistent
If you try to implement too many different designs, the result might look a bit chaotic. Instead, it would help if you devoted some time to planning your overall graphic design. Pick the right colors and typeface to represent your brand, and use them across all your profiles. Include the same stylistic and design choices on your website. If you adopt a consistent look, your audience will easily recognize your social media posts when scrolling through their news feed. A consistent design is a great way to stand out from the competition.
Now that we’ve gone over 7 social media design mistakes to avoid, you can take a look at your current design. If you notice any of these mistakes, it might be time to redesign your brand completely. You can use these tips as guidelines and start developing a design that will get you noticed.