How to Use Canva to Create Easy Social Media Posts

Create Amazing Social Media Posts with Canva

Readers respond to social media posts with good visuals and precise words. Even if you don’t have a graphic designer background, you can create attractive social media posts quickly. You can use a pre-made flyer, or create your post graphic with any photo editing program like Photoshop or Pic Monkey. I use Canva.com for its simplicity, pre-designed flyers, and great ideas.

There are several plans. One is free and I used that for about a year. I chose a Canva Pro plan billed on a yearly basis. There is also an Enterprise plan for large companies.

How to Use Canva.com

  1. Upload your picture if you are using your own.
  2. Choose the type of media you are creating.
  3. Canva has pre-created templates. The berry mode below is one of them. All I changed was the wording, so it took about 2-3 minutes to create several social media posts.
  4. You will see a blank screen. Name your design. Canva automatically names it using the heading text you write. Make sure that is the name you want because it is hard to search for a design if you forget what it is called.
  5. Pick your background color.
  6. Insert your uploaded picture or choose one from Canva’s choices or choose a template with a picture you like.
  7. Size the image until you are satisfied with the look.
  8. Download. There are several options. I use jpeg for blogging because it says it is optimized to take less space.
  9. Then upload to the social media page.

You can use any photo editing program you wish, but Canva comes out clean, the right size and the print is not blurred. If you do not have the automatic resize that comes with the paid version of Canva you can still easily resize images yourself. Below are samples of posts in different sizes.

Features of Canva

Canva is more intuitive than Photoshop and performs many of the same functions. So join me and jump right in – hands-on learning works with Canva. If you run into a problem, they have a solution – school.

This was one feature I overlooked until I started teaching Canva classes to students are their courses and tutorials. My students and I clicked on the tutorials and learned together. Each lesson offers a short video (less than 2 minutes) that saves you a ton of time.

Courses are free and each video has an outline.

Reference Written Instructions

  1. Design Icons: On the upper right under the menu bar are some icons that change as you click each element of the design. For example, in the background mode, you can change color and transparency.
  2. The Text function has many options: font, size, bold, case, alignment, copy, transparency, and a link. So it is easy to add a bold heading or a faint watermark. I don’t think the link option is available in the free version. Most of the frequently-used options you have in Word or Google Docs are available in Canva, but the computer shortcuts don’t work. If you want to copy, you have to press the Canva “copy” button.
  3. Elements like shapes, lines, charts, grids, pictures, illustrations have three design options: copy, arrange, transparency, and link. You can also group items that overlap.
  4. Images & Templates: Two of the most useful elements in Canva are the assortment of images and templates they have. Many are free. The most you pay is $1 for a picture you can use without the worry of copyright infringement.
  5. Editing Options: Pictures have several more editing options. You can filter, crop or flip. Some of these might not be available with the free program.
    1. Filtering gives you a simplified version of changes you can make in Photoshop. In the Pro version of Canva, you find 13 ways to alter the picture in addition to changing contrast and brightness. It is so much easier to use for simple changes than Photoshop. Major changes like erasing wrinkles, changing eye color, moving objects from one picture into another work on Photoshop, but not Canva.
    2. Cropping is easy.
    3. Flipping is available in the Pro version.
    4. Copy, arrange and the link features are available for pictures, too.

Making Size Changes

Sometimes it is easier to make a new design than it is to resize.

When it is complicated you might rather choose to resize your great design.

Facebook Post 940 x 788 px

Social Media Posts
Facebook post 940 X788 px Woodlake Berry Festival

Steps to Change Sizes Manually in the Free Canva Program

With Canva Pro, you can instantly resize your graphic to fit different social media. Otherwise, you can note the size here and recreate it yourself. It is not hard to do this.

Social Media Posts
Canva.com screen

Social media sometimes make changes in their requirements. For the most part, I choose the templates which Canva aligns with current social media requirements.

Remember – Sometimes it is easier to make a new design than it is to resize.

  • To make size changes yourself, go to the File menu. Make a copy. VERY IMPORTANT if you are using the free version, not the Magic Resize.
  • Name your copy for easy reference later.
  • Enlarge the image to see all your details clearly. You can enlarge it by clicking the % button in the lower right corner of the screen.
  • After you resize, rearrange the items in the image to fill the spaces attractively.
  • Extend elements like the rectangles you see in these templates to completely cover the background.

Warnings!

  • One of the problems that I sometimes have is that the rectangle elements do not always come out to the edge of the background. Then you have an unwanted halo around your graphic detail. To solve this extend your element past the edge of the graphic.
  • A mistake that I make is forgetting a minor detail in the text like I did in the picture below. You have to go back and fix it in Canva, which takes time, download it again, reload it into your post. Bummer! It is best not to put text on a photo that you use in Canva. If you do, then you have to alter two programs if it is wrong.

Instagram Post 1080 x 1080 px

Social Media Posts
Instagram 10080 x 1080 px Woodlake Berry Festival

If you forget, you can find the size for the design in the file menu where you can click to change the dimensions. Expect everything in the design to look out of place after you resize.

Twitter Post 1024 x 512 px

Social Media Posts
Twitter post  1024 x 512 px Woodlake Berry Festival post

Tumblr 540 x810 px

Social Media Posts
Tumblr post 540 x 810 px Woodlake Berry Festival poster

Pinterest Graphic 735 x 1102

Pinterest 735 x 1102 px Woodlake Berry Festival

Conclusion

Visual social media posts take 15-30 minutes to create and even less if you use a template. Canva has free templates and stock photos you can purchase for $1 each.  Below is a Facebook post I made out of a quote that had no illustration. It took less than five minutes to create. I hope you enjoy creating with Canva. Always Write is not an affiliate of Canva.

Social Media Posts
Picture of Dogwood flower Quote “Live Simply. Dream big. Be grateful. Give love. Laugh lots.” Unknown author

Related Posts

Grab a free PDF download of this post for reference.

How to Post to Multiple Social Media Accounts

Post to Multiple Social Media Accounts

Are you still breathing, Amy?

How many hours do you think I have in a day, Peter?

So you have plenty of time to write a post a day, spending two to four hours processing photographs, creating professional graphics, writing about your niche, and you need more to do?

Says NOBODY!

In Part One we discussed getting the most publication for your writing hours by using WordPress “Publicize,” or a Third Party service like buffer or Hootsuite. CoSchedule, the wonderful blog that brings us the headline analyzer, also has a calendar that allows you manage and publicize posts. Their product starts at $60 for 10 accounts, but with more users. It is primarily a business tool.

post to multiple social media accounts

Even though I am posting an article every day for the Ultimate Blog Challenge this month, I do not usually have time to do that. It is not even recommended by all blogging experts. Dries Cronje from Productive Entrepreneur wrote my favorite post of all times, “Why Posting Every Day is a Silly Strategy” on SmartBlogger.

He changed my blogging life and made it manageable. Continue reading “How to Post to Multiple Social Media Accounts”

Time Saving Tips for Social Media Posting for Success

Social Media Posting for Busy Bloggers

Yes, social media posting is important, Peter Problogger. But don’t you know that we amateur bloggers live, work, raise families, AND spend 2-6 hours per blog post?

Calm down, Amy Amateur. There’s help!

social media posting

I struggled to keep up with all the social media and my blog. I tried scheduling with WordPress, Buffer, Hootsuite and manual posting. It still took me a lot of time. So, a few weeks ago I asked my readers how they handled their marketing time.

Oh Yes, …And still, have time to breathe. This is what they shared with me. Continue reading “Time Saving Tips for Social Media Posting for Success”

How Do You Find Your Posts on LinkedIn?

Do Your Posts Get Lost in the Shuffle?

As an author, blogger, and webmaster I spend hours on multiple social media sites.

Have you ever posted something, and forgotten whether you posted it or not?

Possibly it did not show up in the first place. That happened to me with the last post I created on Always Write. So I wanted to check to see if it had posted on LinkedIn. The problem was that I couldn’t find my posts on LinkedIn. They are not in the dropdown menu or on your profile page like they are on Twitter.

Today I learned how to find my forgotten posts.

Here is how you find YOUR posts on LinkedIn.

How to find your posts on LinkedIn. Thank you Donna.
How to find your posts on LinkedIn. Thank you Donna.

  1. Go to your profile page.
  2. Click the View Profile As blue button.
  3. Click the top button View Recent Activity.

Easy as one-two-three.

Please share if this post is helpful to you. I’d love your follow on Google +.

 

 

Blogging is YOU in Words – Three Steps to Help People Know You Better

RESOLVED in 2015:  Update my blog.  I spent two days cleaning up my three year-old blog and incorporating what I’ve learned over the years.

typing

  1. Create Pages That Work
    1. Only use a few (3-7) Main Pages, and create sub pages if you have lots of information. Examples might be: About, Start Here, Resources, (I had about 10 pages showing.)
    2. Main Pages are short, but highlight your purpose.
    3. Spend the most time refining your About page because people will go there first to see if they want to spend any time with you.
    4. Don’t be afraid to borrow ideas from other people’s pages YOU liked, and revise them to make them your ideas.  Did someone mention their dog, and you adore yours?  Reinvent and include.20130915_0618171R
    5. Invite viewers to your social media on your About page
    6. Include contact information for readers to fill out, if your purpose is to build readership and/or sell products.

      11
      I got sucked into SOCIAL MEDIA: Facebook, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Twitter, Path, Pinterest, Instagram. I’ve been through it all!  Anything to get my face out there!
  2. Publish with Social Media
    1. Social media, even if you don’t understand it, builds statistics, and may build long-term readers. Establish social media accounts, such as Facebook Google +, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and invite your email contacts to build each platform. Set WordPress to link automatically to social media.
    2. To build readership and relationships check your social media often and learn how to use it.
    3. Join social media groups so you can send posts and pages to specific groups who would be interested in those topics.Manny's Trip to Spain
  3. Revise and Repost
    1. After a few months, or years depending on how much you blog, reorganize your blog.
    2. Update information on pages. Refer readers to search specific categories. Include lists of helpful blogs, books, and posts.
    3. Revise your writing based on what you have learned about that skill from blogging. For example eliminate passive verbs and pointless adverbs like quite or really.
    4. Copy the link of your revision and repost them on social media.  Assuming that your social media presence has grown, it’s amazing how many people didn’t see it the first time, but now know you, and will visit it now.

Most of the photos above are compliments of my blogging friend, Ralph who entertained my teddy bear Manny for a month in Spain.  Manny knows more about blogging than I do!

I'm going in again!
But her blog still need some cleaning up. I’m up for it! 🙂 Manny 🙂

What are your plans for your blog this year?