Creating Content in 2023: What Will Help You Reach Your Business Goals?

In 2023, creating content that is valuable and engaging to your audience will be key in achieving your business goals. Content creation should focus on building relationships with customers, providing accurate information about products or services, and providing a platform for customers to engage with your brand.

Let’s look at some common business goals and different types of content you can create to help you reach them.

1. Increase Brand Awareness:

Are you looking to boost your brand’s visibility? Crafting content that positions you as the expert in your field is an excellent way of achieving this goal.

Content marketing involves developing and sharing meaningful, valuable content with your target audience. Use your expertise and experience to create content that showcases your knowledge and provides your audience with insightful information about the industry such as:

  • Blog posts – create informative, helpful, and keyword-rich blog content that educates your readers and helps them solve their problems.
  • Infographics – create eye-catching infographic content that can be used to explain complex topics or to present data in an easily digestible format.
  • Videos – create engaging video content that can be used to showcase your products and services or to provide helpful tutorials and how-tos.
  • Social media posts – create shareable content that people will enjoy and engage with on social media.

This type of content should be creative, entertaining and informative. The key is to create content that resonates with your audience and provides them with valuable information. Additionally, you should also ensure that your content is optimized for search engines so it can be easily discovered.

Creating content that is easy for users to consume will help increase awareness about your business and drive more traffic to your website.

2. Generate Leads:

Creating content that will generate leads is an important part of any successful marketing strategy. If you want to generate more leads, you need to create content that encourages customers to take action.

A few strategies you may want to consider include:

  • Optimizing your content (seo)
  • Targeting specific keywords and topics
  • Leveraging social media to share your content with a wider audience
  • Writing content that is interesting and informative to your target audience

You may also want to consider creating content with a call-to-action to generate leads, such as offering a free download or providing a contact form for those interested in learning more about your product or service. With the right content strategy, you can create content that will help you generate leads and grow your business.

3. Build Customer Loyalty:

Creating content that will build customer loyalty can be a great way to increase customer retention and boost long-term customer engagement.

Here are some ideas on how to create content that will build customer loyalty:

  1. Focus on providing quality content. Quality content can include helpful advice, tips, articles, videos, and more that are tailored to customer needs.
  2. Show appreciation for customers. Create content that highlights customer achievements and thank customers for their support.
  3. Offer exclusive content. Give customers early access to new products, discounts, and other special offers.
  4. Ask customers for feedback. Encourage customer feedback by asking customers for their opinions, ideas, and suggestions.
  5. Share customer stories. Highlight customer success stories in your content.

You should also consider creating customer loyalty programs that reward customers for their loyalty. Rewarding loyal customers with discounts, exclusive offers, or other promotional items can help increase customer engagement and satisfaction.

By following these tips, you can create content that will build customer loyalty and help strengthen relationships with your customers.

Remember This When Creating Your Content

Creating content that meets your business goals in 2023 will require a well thought-out content strategy.

It is important to ensure that your content is tailored to the needs of your target audience and is optimized for search engine rankings. Use creativity when creating your content to make it truly stand out. This will increase its visibility and attract more viewers. For maximum impact and engagement from your audience, it is essential to be consistent with your content – this will not only help you gain their trust but also keep them coming back for more. With careful and thoughtful content creation, your business can reach its goals and find success.

Prepare To Meet Your 2023 Goals

By focusing on creating content that is valuable and engaging for your customers, you can build relationships with them and increase brand awareness, generate leads, and build customer loyalty.

By following these tips and staying up-to-date with the latest trends in content marketing, you can ensure that your content creation efforts are successful in 2023.

If you need help creating a content strategy for your brand, contact us today at 412-715-6266.

Social Media Hacks: 10 Ways to Make Posting Quicker and Easier for Small Businesses Using Canva PART 2

Are you a small business owner who doesn’t have the time or energy to create and design for social media posts? 

Do you need ways to make posting quicker and easier?

You’re not alone! With ever-increasing expectations in both reach and quality of content, it can be hard to keep up.

That’s why we’ve gathered some of our favorite social media hacks that will help make creating attractive, professional social media posts quicker and simpler for small businesses like yours.

If you’re a small business looking for easy ways to create social media posts without spending a ton of time or money, then Canva is your go-to tool.

As the leader in DIY design and visual content creation, Canva makes it easier than ever for brands to whip up stunning visuals that engage their customers—all with just one click.

Last time, we covered 4 hacks for getting started in Canva–we talked about what Canva is, how to get your business set up quickly, and how to keep your files organized for maximum efficiency when using Canva. If you missed Part 1, check it out here.

In Part 2, we’ll go over the easiest ways to use Canva’s design tools so you can start posting professional looking social media designs right away!

There's More to Getting Started in Canva

Hack #5: Using the "MORE" Menu Tab

In Canva, more is more. Whenever you see a three-dot tab in a toolbar, that means there are even more options for your design!

This can be information overload if you’re not used to Canva. But, if you click the “more” tab, you’ll find a ton of features that will help make your social media designs even more unique and on-brand.

For example, in the More tab, you can copy an entire design or an entire folder, make subtle changes, rename it, and then save it again as a brand new design.

No more starting from scratch, and it’s super easy!

The More tab also allows you to add special effects such as blur or vignette to draw attention to specific elements of your design. You can also access features like adding links or adjusting the transparency of page elements, graphics, and overlays. 

In addition, the “More” tab gives you access to options for layers, which can help you separate different parts of your design so you can change them even more.

This is especially useful if you want to make certain graphics stand out at the front of the page and appear “on top” of other graphics to create a multi-layered look.

Quick keyboard “command” shortcuts are also listed out for you in the more tab, making it easy to select, copy, and paste anything on your page with the click of a button.

Select a group of multiple elements, like a box of text and a logo icon from your page, by holding down the “shift” key as you select each item, and then click “group” in the more menu.

You can then copy and paste that entire group of icons, text, etc. to a new page while keeping the size and spacing the same from one post to the next.

The Quickest and Simplest Canva Tool for Beginners

Hack #6: Use Canva's Quick Create Tool

Canva’s Quick Create tool is a great way to create social media posts that are both eye-catching and on-brand.

Quick Create has a small library of templates that automatically add your company’s logo, colors, and preferred fonts to pre-formatted social media designs.

You can literally create polished posts in minutes. Best of all, you don’t need any design experience at all to use it, and it’s free. This is a great option if you’re just getting started and do not want to make too many design choices.

If you like having a more customized look for your social media posts, this may not be the best option for you. It is a nice starting point, though, because you can still customize these designs as much as you’d like after they are saved in Canva.

To use the Quick Create tool, just log in to your account and select the social media icon button located at the middle of the home page. The Quick Create tab is listed in the “popular” section and should be the first option you can choose.

You will be prompted to pick the social media formats you will need, the text you’d like to add, and the style you like the most out of Canva’s pre-selected design templates.

There are only 5 steps to complete before your social posts are ready to go!

Right now, video formats are not supported in Canva’s Quick Create tool, but you can save the Quick Create designs and use them to make a video in a new design later. 

It’s really that easy!

Let's Get Moving

Hack #7: Quickly and Simply Animate Your Social Media Posts in Canva

Now, you might not be ready yet to make an entire video using Canva, which we will cover more in depth in a future blog post, and you may not even want to make a short video clip, but adding one of Canva’s pre-made animated graphics to your post is the easiest way to add some movement and interest to your social media posts.

Simply choose a design element and select the “animated” option under the filtered search tab. This will bring up some animated stickers and icons to add to your post.

You can also click on the “animate” tab in your design screen’s toolbar, which will allow you to choose from a number of motion effects that can be applied to the text, entire page, or graphics.

Then, just hit the play button at the top right corner of your screen, and you’ll see the animated graphic start to move.

With Canva’s Pro feature, you can even speed up or reverse the direction of certain types of animation.

When you’re done, click “share” and choose the option to download as an MP4 or GIF file (just remember that a GIF can’t be downloaded with sound but will play on auto-loop).

Check out one of our previous articles on how to film a video on your smartphone and turn it into a social media post.

Can You Hear Me Now?

Hack #8: Quickly and Simply Add Audio to Your Social Media Posts in Canva

So you’ve made an animated design in Canva, but something’s missing. What could it be?

Yes, Sound! You can add music or sound effects to your social media posts with Canva.

Just like the animated graphics, you can find a number of audio files from inside the design screen by clicking on the “audio” tab in the toolbar and selecting from one of their available options.

Here, you’ll find a variety of royalty-free soundtracks and sound effects that can easily be added to any post.

You can also upload your own music if you have a purchased track or sound file that you want to use.

Once you’ve uploaded the music, you can change the volume and add fade-in and fade-out effects right in Canva’s editor.

The Lowdown on Downloading

Hack #9: Quickly and Simply Download Your Social Media Posts

When it comes to sharing your creations online, Canva makes it easy to export your designs directly from the platform. Just click the “Share” button at the top of the page and select how you want to share it. You can then copy the link or download your design as a PDF, JPEG, PNG, etc.

Image Size Guide for Social Media Posts

Social media platforms are constantly changing their size and dimensions for images, which means that creating posts with consistent sizing can be tricky. To make sure your social media posts look great on any platform, here is a handy image size guide:

Facebook Landscape Post: 940 x 788 pixels

Twitter: 1600 x 900 pixels

Instagram: 1080 x 1080 pixels

Pinterest: 1000 x 1500 pixels

LinkedIn: 1200 x 1200 pixels

YouTube Thumbnail: 1280 x 720 pixels

No matter which platform you’re using, make sure to keep your images optimized for the best quality.

Canva makes it easy to resize and crop images so that they fit within the recommended dimensions of each platform, and it will automatically give you their suggested format for your download.

Canva’s Pro feature even allows you to copy and resize your design using the “resize” tab near the top left corner of the screen.

Sharing and Scheduling

Hack #10: Quickly and Simply Share Your Social Media Posts

Last but not least, automating social media posts is one of the best ways to save time on posting content for your business. There are plenty of platforms out there that offer scheduling capabilities, so you can set up all your posts ahead of time and never worry about rushing through them again. 

Canva has recently launched its own scheduling feature for Pro users, which lets you quickly and easily post your designs to your social media accounts. You can even schedule posts for specific days and times so that your content is tailored to the right audience at the right time.

With this new feature, you don’t have to worry about manually posting your content every day. Just schedule it and let Canva do the rest!

Canva’s free plan allows you to share to multiple social media channels, but you cannot schedule them in advance.

By following these simple hacks, you can now use Canva to make beautiful social media posts with ease!

Think of your designs as stories that help build relationships with your customers; use images and animations to really bring them to life. And finally, use the scheduling feature to save time and make sure your posts are shared on a regular basis.

Good luck, and happy designing!

And if you need any more help, contact our social media experts at IFTS, and we will get the job done for you! Give us a call today at 412-715-6266, and we’ll get you started on creating visuals that will take your business to the next level.

Social Media Hacks: 10 Ways to Make Posting Quicker and Easier for Small Businesses Using Canva PART 1

Are you a small business owner who doesn’t have the time or energy to create and design for social media posts? 

Do you need ways to make posting quicker and easier?

You’re not alone! With ever-increasing expectations in both reach and quality of content, it can be hard to keep up.

That’s why we’ve gathered some of our favorite social media hacks that will help make creating attractive, professional social media posts quicker and simpler for small businesses like yours.

If you’re a small business looking for easy ways to create social media posts without spending a ton of time or money, then Canva is your go-to tool.

As the leader in DIY design and visual content creation, Canva makes it easier than ever for brands to whip up stunning visuals that engage their customers—all with just one click.

 In this article, we’ll go over quick and simple hacks #1–4, the basics of getting started and staying organized in Canva, so you can get busy creating beautiful, eye-catching posts! Read on so you can start benefiting from these shortcuts right away!

Canva basics: the basics of using Canva to create posts for your small business

Canva is a user-friendly graphic design tool that can be used to create professional-looking visuals for your small business. With Canva, you can create custom visuals for your website, social media posts, and marketing materials.

A great thing about Canva is that it’s free to use. You can create basic designs without having to pay a cent. If you are running a small business, however, the “pro” plan that Canva offers is worth it in my humble opinion if you need to create lots of social media posts quickly.

Getting Started With Canva

To get started with Canva, head to the website and create an account. Once you’re logged in, you’ll be taken to the main dashboard. This is where you’ll find all of the tools and features that Canva has to offer.

Have a Social Media Plan for Your Posts

Hack #1: Plan Your Posts

Have a plan for your social media posts before you get started. As we outlined in one of our previous blog posts, creating themes for each day of the week is a great way to get your creative juices flowing.

Take a peek at your competitors’ social media accounts or an account in an industry similar to yours.

Is there a certain type of post that seems to get a lot of engagement from their audience?

Try to come up with your own version.

For example, if you own a painting company, you can do a series of DIY fail posts for a fun look at why your industry is sometimes so desperately needed. Just be sure to credit any photo sources or quotes that aren’t yours.

Once you have your themes in place, create a content calendar. Start by jotting down at least two weeks’ worth of content ideas and post dates. You can even begin drafting in Canva’s Pro Plan scheduling feature (which we will be covering in this article) before you even start designing the actual post!

This will help you keep track of what posts you have coming up and plan ahead to make sure all of your posts are on time and delivered when they need to be. Not only that, but it’s also helpful for making sure your posts are well-thought out and not rushed.

Have Your Brand’s Style, Fonts, Colors, and Logo at Your Fingertips

Hack #2: Create a Brand Kit Using Canva’s Pro Feature

Creating a brand kit using Canva Pro is one quicker and easier way to ensure that all of your branding elements are consistent and look professional in your social media posts. By creating a brand kit, you can control the size, font, and color of your branding elements, which will help create a unified look for your business.

You will need access to all of your text fonts, high resolution, transparent background logo files (preferably SVG, aka Scalable Vector Graphics, which do not lose quality or resolution when resized), and the CYMK #s that represent your company’s brand colors to upload to Canva.

When you are ready to start designing, your brand’s kit is easily accessed from the side menu bar under “styles.”

Canva offers a variety of pre-made templates that you can use as a starting point for your social media post designs.

You can also create your own brand templates from scratch by starting with a blank canvas and using your brand kit as your guide, or simply change the background colors and logos on any of the pre-made templates by clicking the small color box in the top left corner of the design screen. Your company’s colors will automatically show up in the color selection menu on the left side of the screen.

When designing the graphics for your brand, it’s important to keep in mind the overall tone and message of your business. For example, if you want to project an image of professionalism and sophistication, you’ll want to use sleek fonts and rich, neutral colors. If you want to create a more playful or whimsical brand identity, then you might want to use fun fonts and brighter, bolder colors.

You can also easily use your own fonts instead of the ones that come with Canva’s templates by clicking the text button in the sidebar menu.

Make sure that all of your branding elements are the same size and shape. For example, if you have a series of posts with a border, make sure it’s the same size in each post. Your logo icon and company name should also be consistently placed throughout your designs.

After you’ve chosen a template or designed your own, it’s time to start filling in the details of your social media posts. Canva offers a range of tools and features for adding 2D and 3D images and illustrations, animations, graphs, borders, photos, shapes, and lines, as well as textures and filters, to give your social media a totally custom look.

Canva’s Filter Feature

Hack #3: Use the Filter Tab to Find Your Ideal Graphic Quickly

Canva’s filter feature is great for finding the perfect graphic or image quickly without having to scroll through endless clip art options.

The filter tab icon shows up in the top right corner of the search bar when you are in the elements section of the design screen. The filter allows you to search by keyword, color scheme, size, and whether you need a free or pro element.

So if you need a vector illustration of an office chair that’s green with white stripes, no problem! Just type in those keywords and let Canva do the rest. 

Canva also offers a library of royalty-free stock images and photos that you can use in your designs. You can search the library using keywords, or you can scroll through the available images to find what works best for your post. Plus, if there’s something specific that you need, you can upload your own pre-made graphics and photos. 

Once you’ve created a few templates for your brand, it’s important to save them so that you can use them again and again throughout the year. Canva allows you to save both individual designs as well as entire folders of templates, which brings us to hack #4.

Save Your Designs for Faster Creation

Hack #4: Save Your Designs to a Folder

When you save your newly designed social media posts, you can easily and quickly copy the layout, elements, and style you worked so hard on into your future social media designs.

The easiest way to do this in Canva is by creating folders. You can create folders to save different types of images, such as logos, product shots, or blog graphics. You can also create a folder for each client or project you’re working on.

This will help you stay organized and save you valuable time by making it easy to find the images you need when you’re working on your designs.

When creating folders in Canva, be sure to name them clearly so you can easily find them later. You may also want to create sub-folders within your main folders if you have a lot of images. This can help keep you even more organized. 

When you are ready to create a new social media post, select a folder and then click the “add new” design button on the top right portion of the screen. Once you are directed to the editing screen, you can scroll down the toolbar on your left to the tab labeled “Projects” and select one of your saved folders or designs.

Your previously saved project can then be added as a new page. Then, you can easily change the background color, images, and text to your liking while keeping some elements, like the border and logo placement, the same.

There you have it. Follow our first 4 simple hacks so you are organized and ready to start designing social media posts in Canva.

Next time, we’ll go over 6 more hacks that will explain the most efficient ways to use Canva’s design tools so you can get busy creating!

And if you need any more help, contact our social media experts at IFTS, and we will get the job done for you! Give us a call today at 412-715-6266, and we’ll get you started on creating visuals that will take your business to the next level.