In our series on Visual Content Marketing, we explained the value of incorporating visual elements into your digital strategy. Trends in digital marketing continue to value these visuals as they have been shown to create higher levels of engagement. In this post we talk about the tools to create those visual assets to carry out your digital marketing strategy. If you’re on a tight budget or deadline and can’t hire a designer, these free tools can help you create effective infographics, social media micro-content, and presentations. Each section features two different tools for the various capabilities a company may require.
After doing the research and outlining what is to be said in the infographic, try these free tools to implement the formatting. You wont have full customization of things like icons and shapes, but if you’re interested in getting the informational content out in a visually appealing way, these tools will be great solutions.
1. Creately (for flowcharts and diagrams)
Pros – High level of customization, many templates available
Cons – Not visually attractive, all files are public unless you pay
2. Piktochart (for highly graphic, basic infographics)
Pros – Has large collection of free assets including photos and icons and offers a create-your-own mode
Cons – A “Created with Piktochart” footer is added to the bottom unless you upgrade and offers limited free template options
Social media micro-content
This type of visual content is typically found on a company’s social media page. It is usually quickly made, highly graphic, and has some basic calls to action. This isn’t content that’s meant to be put up in a gallery, rather the flashy visual that’s meant to attract people to a post, and then disappear down into the feed. You can also use these tools for projects outside of social media for mockups or photo edits.
1. Pixlr Editor (more technical and custom)
Pros – setup similar to Adobe Photoshop with reasonably good customization
Cons – Far more basic than Adobe Photoshop and offers no templates
2. Canva (less technical and easier to template)
Pros – Attractive imagery, easy drag and drop templates, and lots of additional resources for tips on design
Cons – Can’t edit the fine details and requires payment for using their premium images
While PowerPoint and Keynote typically dominate the presentation market, there have been some major innovations in the form of free online deck creation tools. They offer quicker and cheaper solutions for those looking to piece together some attractive slides in a relatively short period of time. Like the rest of the tools mentioned here, what they lack in full customization, they make up for in price and ease of use. However, keep in mind, these apps host your presentations online and offer limited options for downloading and sharing.
1. Emaze (for drag and drop templates and PowerPoint style presentation decks)
Pros – You can download in a variety of formats. The learning curve is lower as it somewhat resembles the PowerPoint setup.
Cons – Limited themes and assets, also can’t make presentations private or present them offline
2. Prezi (for interactive presentations)
Pros – Provides a refreshing and more interactive experience than the typical slide-by-slide presentation
Cons – Can’t download an interactive version and takes time to learn
View the Prezi version of this blog post here:[prezi url=”http://prezi.com/6j-afajf8ttf/” width=”635″ height=”476″ zoom_freely=”N” ]
Hopefully one of the two options for each medium will offer solutions to your visual content needs. There are plenty of other free and paid tools on the Internet to explore, but we think these are the best tools for most jobs. The prevalence of visual content isn’t going away, so utilize these free tools to develop a design workflow that works best for your company. If you need assistance with producing great content for your digital strategy, contact Kona Company today.