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June 6th, 2016 by - Posted in Plan, Design & Build

“I’m not a designer”, “Photoshop makes my eyes glaze over”, “I want to create visually stunning graphics that attract the right audience to my brand”

These are some of the frustrations that I hear over and over again from fellow entrepreneurs that want to step up their design game but are not sure how to do it. Well folks, I’m just going to state for the record that I struggled with these same issues for a while, until I launched this brand earlier this year.


My Struggle With Consistent Branding and Visual Design 
As I initially stated, for years I struggled with branding, visual design and just pretty much trying to create a cohesive look and feel for my brand. I tried using programs like Photoshop, but got easily frustrated with trying to figure out how to use it. Then I tried using PicMonkey, but I didn’t like the fact that I could not save my work.

Then one day I decided to sign up for an account on Canva and used it to create a few blog post images, but nothing else. Now, even though I had been using Canva for a little while I didn’t realize the full potential of this platform until launching YourChicGeek.

I would sit around for hours creating one different branded design after another (HOURS people). Then one day, I after setting up shop on Pinterest, I started looking around at some of the other designs there.

What I noticed was that the designs that were getting the most re-pins, shares and likes all had one thing in common: There was a consistent look and feel to their designs.

This my friends, was a huge game changer for me and the way that I moved forward with designing graphics for my brand. These days, Canva is now a staple in my brand, and a resource that I use every day for designing graphics and visual designs for YourChicGeek.

What Is Canva, And How Do I Use It For My Business?
Canva is an online platform that you can use to create super gorgeous visual designs + documents for your brand. What I love about Canva is that in the dashboard of the platform, there are templates for nearly every type of design you can think of like: presentations, social media profile covers, blog Graphics, flyers, postcards, resumes, banners, eBook covers and CD covers.
Canva-1024x242

When I launched this brand earlier this year, I made a promise to myself to get really serious about stepping up my visual design game. I took the time to learn how to use Canva to create graphics that:

  • Would be easily shared on social media networks
  • Would increase engagement, shares, likes Repins and Retweets
  • Stood out from the sea of millions

So far, it has really been working! Now, I want to make this point clear, I am all about investing in your brand and in tools for building your business. However, I also know from spending tons of money (to the tune of thousands) in the past, that you also want to be very intentional about where you are investing money into your business – because at the end of the day, you want to make a return on your investments.

Why Visual Content and Graphic Design Matters
Earlier this year, Hubspot published an article that covered that is armed with stats about the importance of visual design. I felt compelled to share these stats with you to stress the importance of using visuals with your marketing:

  • Content with relevant images gets 94% more views than content without relevant images (KissMetrics)
  • Visual content is more than 40X more likely to get shared on social media than other types of content (Buffer Blog)
  • Researchers found that colored visuals increase people’s willingness to read a piece of content by 80% (Xerox)

I admit, I have definitely noticed an increase in engagement and shares across the board when I share posts with graphics vs. posts without them.

How I Use Canva To Design Graphics For My Brand And Build My Visual Arsenal
One of the questions that I get all of the time from fellow entrepreneurs and peeps that I run into online is: “Kim, what are you using to design your branded graphics and images on your blog?” When I tell them Canva, they are floored. But it’s true. I use Canva to design all of the graphics that I use for my brand such as:

My Branded Graphics
Remember when I stated earlier that I used to spend hours creating branded images for my blog posts? So, I finally figured out how to create a branded image in Canva, and use it over and over again for future images.

Branded Blog Image – Designed with Canva

My Product Images and Covers
Yeppers, that’s right folks! I used Canva to create all of my product images and graphics that I sell from my store.

Startup-Like-a-CHAMP-Power-Pack-768x576

Startup Like a CHAMP Workbook – Designed with Canva

My Workbooks That I Offer In My Store
Shocker right — my ‘Startup Like a Champ Power Pack + Toolkit‘, ‘Brand Like a Boss Workbook‘, ‘31 Day Pro Workbook‘ and ‘Blogging for Business Toolkit + Planner‘ were all designed with Canva.  Even the workbooks that I design for my courses and workshops over in my mini-university are all designed with Canva.

Blogging for Business Toolkit + Planner Workbook – Designed with Canva

 

Lead Magnets, Opt Ins and Content Upgrades
For every blog post that I write, I tend to add a lead magnet or some type of incentive to the end of the posts.  If you ever wondered what I was using to design these freebies, it is non other than Canva, my friends.

Lead Magnet + Pinnable – Designed with Canva

And last but not least… Promo and Advertisement Materials
When I first collaborated with my good friend Shannon of InkPensnCoffeecups, we wanted to create some sort of promotional and marketing items to get the word out about our 31 Day PRO Startup Challenge.

31 Day Pro Flyer – Designed with Canva

Well peeps, I used Canva to create our marketing + promo flyers for this event andddd as I mentioned before, to also design the 31 Day Pro Workbook that accompanies this challenge.

31 Day PRO Workbook – Designed with Canva

As you can see, I have used Canva to build a complete visual arsenal for my brand.  The best part of it all is that it didnt cost me anything to create these designs.  All I used was just a little bit of creativity and planning on my part to get er done.

So peeps, my question to you is this…

Do You Want to Build A Visual Arsenal for Your Brand, Design Gorgeous Freebies and Products with Canva? 
Great!  I created and released a workshop Canva Superstar with you in mind.
Canva Superstar is a 2 hour + workshop with 8 video lessons where I show you how to:

  • How to choose a color palette + fonts for your designs like a PRO!
  • How to Design Gorgeous Blog graphics for your blog (like these) even if you don’t have design skills.
  • The 5 Step system that I use to design workbooks that I sell for profit
  • How to design branded graphics for your sidebar
  • The framework that I use to design eBook covers and more!

As a bonus, I added a Font Pairing Pro Workbook with more than 30 pre-selected fonts to the mix — as I know that choosing font combinations is seriously a hassle.
In fact, one of my students (who mind you doesnt have any design skills and etc) used Canva Superstar to design this graphic for a very important keynote presentation for his clients.

Canva-Superstar-Testimonial

Doesn’t this look amazeballs?
How You Can Use Canva To Create Graphics For Your Brand + Build Your Arsenal 

  1. For starters sign up for an account with Canva if you don’t already have one
  2. Start designing graphics like a PRO by joining me in Canva Superstar
  3. Figure out what types of graphics you want to design for your brand + use Canva to Create them.
  4. For branding purposes, try to design your graphics cohesively that have the same look and feel as your brand (color palettes, style and etc.,)

Here’s a quick video that I put together of a Workbook that I designed using Canva.  I am telling you…Canva is the #Truth!

Alrighty, I would lovee to hear from ya! Do you have any questions about Canva Superstar?
Anything that you would like to see added?  Are you already using Canva to design graphics for your brand?  I’d love to know…please drop me a line below.  Cheers + much love yall!

 

About The Author

Kim George
Kim, YourChicGeek is a tech savvy diva + founder of YourChicGeek.com. She is passionate about teaching small biz’s how to create a web presence for growth + impact — one tech tool at a time.

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