The Importance of Graphic Design in Social Media: 6 Key Reasons
Learn how social media graphics can help you enhance your social media presence and achieve your marketing goals.
Table of Contents
You know social media is important, but do you know why and how graphic design can help you utilize these channels best? Learn about it here.
It’s a well-known statistic that half of the world’s population is using at least one social media channel, and spends an average of 2.5 hours on social media every day. Over 70% of marketers consider it an effective digital marketing tool, and over half of social media users browse products on these channels.
There are numerous social media strategies to boost engagement. Still, at the day, most social media channels are focused on visuals. So, unless you have visually appealing content, your marketing efforts will be in vain.
How are social media and graphic design connected? We’re looking at some of the main reasons why you need good graphic design on social media.
Having quality products or services or a great website design is critical for building a strong brand. But it’s highly unlikely that people will visit your website every day, even if they like your company. As social media followers they can get regular updates and maintain an interest in your business, which in turn increases brand awareness.
Any professional designer can create graphics for social media (you can even do it yourself with templates or DIY design tools like Canva). But for social media to be on brand, you need consistent graphics that are in line with your brand identity: the look, values and messaging outlined in your social media brand guide.
We’ll use our own Instagram profile as an example! Our old Instagram posts were visually appealing and unique. However, they didn’t help potential clients to form a mental image of our brand.
Nowadays, our Instagram feed looks a lot more coherent and professional, with our signature brand colors used for each post.
It helps you stand out from the crowd
With so much time spent on social media exposed to a flood of content, our attention span is getting shorter by the day. So one of the most important roles design has in your social media marketing strategy is getting people to stop and notice what you’re advertising.
In a world where every Instagram mom uses #foodporn for a humble brag on her cooking skills, it can be pretty damn hard to impress people with photos of foods and drinks.
Chambord is a well-known producer of the famous raspberry liquor, and you’d probably expect drinks made with it to be pretty “instagrammable” on their own. But the company also uses the power of great graphic design to create these eye-catching posts that stand out from the usual drink photos we’re all so used to seeing on our feeds.
It shows professionalism
After Google, YouTube is most commonly used as a search engine. Same as with SEO optimization and Google, having a great YouTube thumbnail can help boost clicks and get people to actually watch your video content (that requires so much effort and work to create!).
If you have a professional channel, a unified look of your thumbnails and cover art shows that this isn’t just a side project, but rather a valuable free resource for your clients. Which in turn, builds trust and creates a stronger brand image.
If you use YouTube to promote your products, and especially to create video tutorials for your customers, you need to make sure the thumbnails have a professional design. This suggests that the quality of your video content is high, and shows you prioritize helping your customers, over just selling something to them.
Hubspot is a great one to learn from. They combine a unified professional look, with a bit of fun and edge, perfectly fitting for their audience of (mostly) younger digital natives.
It helps you connect with your target audience
Social media platforms are powerful marketing channels thanks to extensive targeting options that allow you to present ads to people that are more likely to be interested in making a purchase (based on demographics, location and preferences).
So while you can make sure that the right target audience sees your social media ads, professionally designed graphics can boost interaction. Design can greatly improve your storytelling, and help bring the key information, data or messages to your customers in a fun, accessible way.
Dollar Shave club gained internet fame with their wonderfully funny YouTube ad, but beyond that, they’ve mastered the art of verbal and visual communication. Their key value proposition is that self care for men doesn’t have to be overpriced or complicated — but you can still embrace it.
If you take a look at their Facebook page, you’ll notice that the graphics have a toned-down style that is fitting to the brand values, enriched by funny and clever copy. Instead of just posting something that looks good, think about how you can use social media platforms to engage and connect with your audience. Ask them questions, provide them with “taggable” content that they will love to share with friends.
It can boost your website traffic
If you’re still wondering “how important is graphic design in social media marketing”, this ought to convince you.
As a business it’s fantastic to have many followers and high social media engagement rates. Still, at the end of the day, what you’re really interested in is making a profit.
Social media marketing and graphic design go hand in hand, but the majority of sales still happens on your website. While an increasing number of people use social media to shop for products, most people still prefer to use ecommerce websites.
Nevertheless, your social media profiles and your website should work together to secure sales. Once you start posting regular content on social media and, hopefully, with the help of great graphic design getting more engagement and followers, it will be easier to direct them to your website.
They might start by “window shopping” your products on Instagram, only to eventually decide to visit your website and purchase. Or, they might be more inclined to view your stories and click on links leading to your website or landing pages with a specific campaign.
It helps you sell on social media
While social shopping might still be in its early stages, it’s definitely a trend you should keep an eye out for. Here are some stats:
- Sales via social media platforms is estimated to reach $1,298 billion in 2023.
- Over a quarter of people aged 16-64 say they use social media to find things to buy.
- According to Statista, a third of shoppers use social media to find ideas for holiday gift shopping.
- More than 130 million people use Instagram for shopping.
Just like your web design and the design of a physical storefront, graphic design is integral to your social media ecommerce ventures.
You can build a branded online store on platforms such as Facebook and Instagram, and sell directly over social media. This means a shorter sales cycle and showing your customers that your business is relevant embracing new technologies. Professional product shots can make or break purchase decisions,a s we all know from first-hand experience.
Where to get great social media graphics
We hope this explains why graphic design and social media are intrinsically linked.
Getting by with online templates can only take you so far. If your social media graphic design isn’t branded or unique, you won’t be able to connect with your audience or send the right messages.
In turn, this means you’re wasting the opportunity to increase your profit through social media marketing. So, hiring a professional designer is the best social media management decision you can make today.
The cost of a single social media post design is affordable, but bear in mind that building a strong social media presence requires posting regularly. That way the cost of social media graphics can be quite unpredictable, if you opt to work with freelancers.
How about a more budget-friendly way and reliable solution? Our unlimited graphic design service allows you to get all your social media graphics for a flat monthly rate. Whether it’s custom YouTube thumbnails, colorful story templates, or a killer Instagram ad - we do it all!
Having lived and studied in London and Berlin, I'm back in native Serbia, working remotely and writing short stories and plays in my free time. With previous experience in the nonprofit sector, I'm currently writing about the universal language of good graphic design. I make mix CDs and my playlists are almost exclusively 1960s.