Wish you could be a DIY designer? If you’re using social media, you’ve seen the wonderful images people post on Instagram and on other social media sites.
You wish you could do it yourself.
But… nothing is as easy as it looks. Although you try a couple of the easy, easy! tools , they’re not that easy if you’re a beginner. So, you tell yourself that you’re not a designer.
Shame, right? If only you could design, you’d be marketing your online store and you’d be doing a lot more book marketing too.
In a recent writers’ group meeting we discussed the challenges of using social media today. A couple of writers said that they couldn’t market their books and blog because they couldn’t afford to pay a designer.
I’m not a designer either, but over the years (in my daily life I’m a marketer) I’ve discovered that it’s always substance over form. You don’t need to be a designer to excel in marketing on social media.
DIY designer: can you really create social media designs yourself?
Yes, you can. There are lots of options available if you want to be a DIY designer, including dozens of social media image apps. They range from options with a steep learning curve like Adobe Creative Cloud (the home of tools like Photoshop and Illustrator), to simple options like Pablo (from Buffer.)
As a marketer, your needs are simple.
You want to :
- Create eye-catching designs in minutes;
- Use free image resources like Unsplash;
- Develop high resolution designs;
Make a list of what you need from a design tool.
A simple DIY designer tool: what do you need?
You’ll have your own list of essentials.
Here are the popular features our writers’ group members wanted.
Of course, many wanted book cover templates; here are some of the designs you’ll find in Canva.
1. The ability to save designs as templates
Some DIY designer tools have the option to save your designs as templates: Canva does, for example. Check the Help files of your favorite tool.
Bonus points if your tool can save designs in Photoshop PSD format as Photopea does.
2. Create multi-page designs and duplicate images
Although the simpler online graphic image editors may not do this, Canva does. This is very useful if you want to create a presentation or a PDF.
3. A design library: keep designs you’ve created
Canva keeps your designs and many other tools do as well.
If a tool doesn’t do this, be sure to save your designs at various stages: image only, image with text, etc.
4. Social media “share” options
It’s always useful to be able to share your designs with others. Many online image editors will publish your creations to social media and share privately as well.
Private shares are useful if you’re working on a design with a colleague, or if you’re creating for a client.
DIY designer tools: practice and keep practicing
Every DIY designer tool has a learning curve. If you’re completely new to image editing, your learning curve will be longer than if you’re well versed in image creation.
Set aside ten minutes here and there just to practice with your tool. Over time, this will make you proficient.
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