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5 Quick Design Cheats for Marketers Without a Budget

Updated: Mar 11


Over the years, we have worked with some big brands, including Red Bull to Chevrolet Malibu and Oracle. But we also know that not every marketing team has a budget, or there’s a rush, and something needs publishing straight away. So, naturally, no time to work with a designer or external agency.

Don’t panic if you don’t have design skills. Not everyone can or should know their way around Adobe Photoshop CC, Lightroom or InDesign. Unfortunately, that doesn’t help if you need to knock together a kick-ass social graphic before lunch.

Thankfully, there are numerous options for those who need help creating visual content. Most of these tools include services or design assets (e.g. premium font or image options) you can pay for, but on the whole, they’re free. Fast, free and easy-to-use: Let’s take a look at kicking your visual content into shape!

#1: Canva One of the most popular visual creation tools around, with a web-version and apps for iOS and Android. Comes with a simple drag and drop interface, plus dozens of template designs, for everything from a Facebook post to a poster design.

Canva also includes dozens of font styles, icons, background images and other useful features, making it relatively easy to create visual content. Just make sure you have a good Wi-Fi connection when designing using an app, or when you upload your own images, as it can slow down or even crash mid-design.

#2: Pablo by Buffer Social media sharing app, Buffer, are no strangers to creating compelling visual and written content. When it comes to content marketing, they are one of the pioneer startups that wrote the book on how to do content marketing right. Buffer has the revenue and ROI to prove content works. Of course, images are an essential element.

Pablo was created to make it easier for Buffer users to create compelling images. Here is the guide they created for anyone who wants to learn. #3: Skitch Skitch is an Evernote tool. Designed to make it easier to share notes and documents between colleagues, this is another way to take screenshots and turn them into amazing visuals for social media.

It also comes with an annotation feature, so that you can walk an audience through visual features in an article or social media post.

#4: Microsoft PowerPoint or Google Slides PowerPoint needs no introduction. One of the most well-known visual tools on the market. Google Slides is similar, except sharing with colleagues, clients and freelancers is easier, since everyone can implement design features, drop in text and add images.

Both are designed for long-form content, such as presentations for meetings, sales pitches and SlideShare documents.

#5: Infogram Infogram is a web tool that can create infographics and other data visualisations. We know from experience that doing this is not easy, and doing this well is even more challenging. With Infogram, you can combine data from a range of sources, use a selection of 35 charts and over 500 maps, then turn the finished product into anything from a WordPress embed to a PDF.

Creating stunning online visuals does not have to take ages or cost a fortune. Anyone can do it, with the right tools, images and an eye for what your audience wants.


Do you have any useful tools to share? Comment below.

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