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Social Media and Web Graphics Made Easy

Lesson 1 of 12

Class Introduction: The Whys And Whats Of Social Media


Social Media and Web Graphics Made Easy

Lesson 1 of 12

Class Introduction: The Whys And Whats Of Social Media


Lesson Info

Class Introduction: The Whys And Whats Of Social Media

How are you guys doing this morning? Good. Alright. And as I said we're gonna make some social media and web graphics and we're gonna do it in an easy way. Because I'm all about doing things easily. Why make things harder, right? So why social media and web graphics? Why not just making graphics? Why is this not how to make graphics class? Well, the thing is is that social media and web, and I'm gonna kinda lump those together, and then kinda we're gonna pull 'em apart as well, they live in a different space than say if we're printing marketing materials and we're doing you know postcards and business cards and all that. It's sort of a different world and a different thought process involved and a different audience as well. And so it kind of deserves its own little niche. And that's because of the delivery platforms. So when I say social media, and that's gonna be a big focus of what we do, but web, like I said the lines are getting blurred. What does web mean versus social media?

Well social media lives on the web or the internet. You know what is the term that we're using this week for that? So they're kinda blurring together. But when I say social media and social media platforms. So the platform delivery is different with social media than it is say like I say traditional billboards and brochures and things like that. So what are some of the social media platforms that you guys think of when you think of social media? And just feel free to shout them out. Instagram. Instagram. Twitter. Twitter, all right, everybody all at once. Twitter. What's that? Facebook. Facebook. Pinterest. Pinterest, very good. YouTube, thank you. That was the one I was afraid that nobody would say 'cause YouTube is a social media platform. Of course it's huge on the media end of that. Any others? Snapchat. Snapchat. And did we already say Instagram? Yeah. Nobody said let's see, nobody said MySpace. Nobody said Tumblr. (students laugh) Is MySpace still a thing? I don't even know. Tumblr's huge, I just don't get Tumblr (laughs). I don't understand it. And that's what I like is that there are different platforms and I feel like some people feel like they need to attack all of them. And I think what you need to do is figure out what's best for you either personally or for your business and take the platforms that work. I mean obviously people are across all platforms. I wouldn't say find one that works and stick with just the one. You need to find a handful of the ones that work. For instance I don't use Tumblr because A, I don't understand it, and my clients are probably not on Tumblr. And so that's just not one that I use for that. So just keep that in mind. So why social media? There's a reason we call it social media. Those two words are very important. It's not just a name somebody came up with along the way. But as opposed to like traditional media, you know we could just call this internet media, right? Or media we look on read on very small devices while walking down the street, right? We could call it that but we don't. We call it social media. And the social part of that is key. And that's something that we're gonna see as we go through the session and look at the different graphics. So the social is key. So when I say social what are some words or phrases that you guys think of? And I'll point to you so we don't otherwise I can't hear everybody at once I realize. So go ahead like what's something you think of when you think of social? Community. Community. Somebody over here. Interaction. Interaction. Sharing. Sharing. Connecting. Connecting. Engagement. Engagement. I think of communication. I also think of two-way communication. How about relationships? Right. So that's what you're doing with social media. So as opposed to traditional media where I just say this is what I have for sale and I put it on a billboard. Buy it, you know. That's what I'm saying with traditional media. With social media there's a whole 'nother way of thinking. And it's not just get out there and say this is what we have. And I'll see that on a lot of social media platforms. It's just every day they just tell me what they have for sale. That's great but I want to know who you are as a person or as a company. And you're not just a business. You're also a person if you're a small business. I am a small business, I am myself. And so not only am I out there telling people what it is I do, and yes, I would like to eventually build this relationship with you and have you be my client. But I also do just want to build that relationship. And that's you know as a person and as a business as well. So again there's that social media two-way communication. So the social end of it comes back in that your clients or your friends you know, it could be maybe you're just making memes to put on Facebook, you know. Or if you just want to put an inspirational quote up every day and you want it to look good, right? So we let our clients or the recipients of our message, they also have a voice. That's the social part of it. So it's not just me going hey, buy my stuff. It's like here's some stuff I do and here's something I'm interested in, how about you guys? YouTube is a great example of that. On my YouTube channel I always ask people what do you guys want to hear? What would you like me to talk about? There's always that call to action. And that's what your social media should do and with graphics where graphics come in is that because everybody has a chance to be on the web, not just social media but everybody has a presence on the web, you have to shout louder. You have to be seen to be heard on the web. And that's where the graphics come in handy for that. So that's what we're going to do. We'll look at our graphics and how we create those graphics so that we can be heard above the noise and get out there and start building those relationships and also give our clients a way back or our prospective clients or our friends or whoever it is we're talking to. Give them a way to give back and give that voice. So that's what we're gonna do with our graphics. Okay? Sound good? Alright. So let's go ahead and think about what do we need with graphics? Like why, what are we trying to convey, or sell, or what is our message we're putting out there? And that's the first thing I always ask. And that sometimes dictates what platform we want to be on, right? Again it might not just be maybe we know our client target market and we know what their preferred social media platform is and we will put everything up there. You know we'll focus towards that. Maybe we decide we're gonna do Instagram and we're gonna do Twitter, alright. Or maybe a Facebook page. Like for me I use Snapchat. Just only in the last maybe couple months I've finally got into it. I don't use it for business yet, I haven't quite figured that out. But when I'm traveling, like coming here, I went ahead and Snapchatted stuff. I don't have a lot of people following my story but it's like, it's kinda getting me in the mood, you know, kinda getting used to putting up some good stuff that people want to see. My problem is I don't have any way to know which ones people liked. There's no like button in Snapchat. Why is there no like button? So I don't know what sort of graphics and images people are enjoying looking at without just actually then texting my friends later and go what'd you like? Which one did you like you know? So I mean that's you know it's one way of doing it because it isn't built in to that platform. So I pick a couple and go there. And then the other thing is what is it you're trying to convey with your graphic? Are you a photographer and you want to put up a picture every day on Instagram to show how wonderful of a photographer you are? That pretty much, that goes back to the ancient saying, a picture is worth a thousand words, right? If you're a photographer on Instagram you just gotta put up some good photos, right? Put those up you don't need to worry about what it says or anything. You just say here it is, here's where I took it, maybe you know for the photography nerds you're gonna put in you know all the information, the lense you used, and the camera you used and the lighting and whatever else. I'm not a photographer, can you tell? So you're gonna put all that in there but I mean a picture is gonna be the main focus. So that is what needs to be most prominent in that. But maybe it's a sale. You know you're gonna sale. And we're gonna look at some samples in just a few minutes. And there's a sale and you just basically wanna put the information there. So the information needs to be big and catchy because remember a lot of people are reading 'em on their phones. You know so you've got this little phone and you're looking at an Instagram and until recently you couldn't zoom in on Instagram. You couldn't pinch to zoom on Instagram photos and that drove me insane because people'd put these ad graphics with tons of type. And my eyes aren't getting any younger so I couldn't see. And now at least I can pinch to zoom a little bit on Instagram and see that. But you want to keep in mind am I trying to sell something that the information is what's important? So the text is gonna be prominent. But people like pictures so we're gonna put a picture in the background, you know. But the picture is just sort of an added piece to that whatever graphic you're creating. So kind of keep that in mind. And also like I said know where it's going. There're a lot of limitations. We're gonna talk about all the sizes that are available that you have to have for the different social media platforms. They're changing all the time. You know as we get more devices that are more retina capable then they change. We're gonna look at the YouTube one which is the most crazy one of all of them. Because there's one picture for all the different sizes that you can possibly have on YouTube. So trying to create a graphic for that is, I did one just recently and it just almost drove me to drink, so, and I don't drink so. So anyway we're gonna look at that, we're gonna look at the sizes and we're gonna look at the what is the purpose of the graphic. And so that needs to be figured out ahead of time. Don't just jump in and say oh I'm gonna use Instagram 'cause it's what I've always used to put pictures of my dog up there, so that's what I'm gonna use that's what I'm comfortable with. Sometimes it means getting out of your comfort zone and finding the thing that you need to do to advertise what it is you need. For instance Facebook, you know, a lot of people don't use Facebook especially I've noticed a lot of my younger friends like my Millennial friends they don't use Facebook as much. But it depends who your audience is not what you're comfortable with. Great you're comfortable with Facebook, but if your audience isn't there maybe you don't put as much time and effort into that. Because you're not gonna find one graphic that's gonna work across all of them. But some of the tools that we're gonna get in to in a little later we're gonna look at how easy it is to change for the different platforms. And that to me is huge. Because I don't know about you but are any of you is this your main job? Making social media graphics? No. It's not even my main job and I'm a designer, right? And for me I know that I like these tools because I don't have time at the end of the day or don't want to put any more effort into it. I've done all my client work and the last thing I want to do is think about how to make a blog post header that's engaging. So that's why I like these tools. They kind of do a lot of the thinking and the designing for me. I know it's cheating, it's okay. I'm okay with that 'cause I get some wonderful looking graphics out of it. So we're gonna look at all that. So what is the purpose of the graphic you're creating? Always think of this ahead of time. Because the last thing you wanna do is get something created and realize it just isn't working for what you want. So whether it's the specific platform you know the size or the shape. We might have you know Instagram, generally square, although they let you now do non-square images. But square is basically what you think of when you think of Instagram. You know you think of things for YouTube are gonna have like a nice 16:9 widescreen layout for that. Think of that as well and then also think are you trying to sell something? Or engage somebody else? So is it just that you want to show your wares? Or do you want to actually give them a lot of information? Or do you just want to put something out there, that bringing back that connection, that social part of it? We're gonna do inspirational quotes or something like that. 'Kay, does that sound good? Kinda get an idea of what it is? So always be thinking of that ahead of time. Because you don't wanna be down the road and realize oh I really wanted to do it this way. Like I said a lot of the tools give you that option to go I want to change to that. Or save for this, save for this, and save for that. And then you've got three different ones using the same images.

Class Description

Do you want or need to create graphics for use on your website, blog, and social media accounts?  Thankfully, there's no experience required with Erica Gamet's new Social Media class.  Erica is a seasoned Adobe instructor, and she'll show you how to make beautiful graphics, easily, quickly and at a low cost.You'll also get an overview of software tools that are free and easy to use. 

This class covers: 

  • Design basics for digital graphics, such as file types, color and resolution
  • Using Adobe Spark’s suite of free tools to create social media posts and web pages 
  • Choosing photos and type to get your message across

Software Used: Adobe Spark 2016, Apple Keynote 6


Chuleenan Svetvilas

I learned about some great free apps that make it easy to create images for social media. You can make some great images with text really quickly after taking this class. I actually made a little animated image during class and posted it Instagram. I also learned about some good places to go for free images. Erica's very personable and fun, which made it an enjoyable class. The apps are easy to use and you can start making images right away. There isn't a steep learning curve.

Rebecca Chapman

WOW this course is jam-packed with information on so many apps - not just Adobe Spark Post. I love how easy Erica makes everything plus she's very funny and has an approachable style. Thanks CL for another great class!

Jose Velazquez

I really liked how informative and helpful the class was, even do Ive worked with some of the programs used in class I feel like There was so many new things I learned. Thanks to Erica and the whole crew for such an awesome experience

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