You don’t have to be a graphic design artist to take advantage of the online program Canva.
Even if you don’t have a drop of artistic talent, if you’re a freelance writer trying to do any sort of blogging or building a social media platform, Canva is your secret weapon with hundreds of resources waiting for you take advantage of them.
What started as the brain child of Melanie Perkins, a graphic design teacher who sought to streamline basic graphic design, has become a hugely successful online tool. Used by both professionals and amateurs, Canva’s easy to use interface makes graphic design accessible for everyone.
Artists, photographers, website designers and advertising companies are the types of professions you would usually associate with a graphic design website. But Canva has tons of uses for freelance writers and bloggers. The site can help you beyond just designing a business card or logo. It offers templates for everything from Twitter posts, social media graphics, blogging graphics and promotional materials, and easily lets you incorporate your own pictures and text into their designs.
It’s user friendly, and even if you have no graphic design know how you will feel like a professional.
Here are some easy ways to start using Canva right now to boost your business and traffic:
1. Create Eye Catching Graphics
Whether you are a blogger, a freelance writer for hire, or author, you most likely have a website to promote your business and writing. Making your blog look professional has never been easier using WordPress templates to help you set up a website in a flash. But Canva can help you set your blog or website apart even more by creating attention grabbing graphics, headers, logos, and infographics.
There are tons of templates that cater to different dimensions and specifications, but the website also allows you to start from scratch.
A compilation of hiking photos with a popular quote using a Canva template
When creating content, you know that the actual words are half the battle. Pictures are a necessity. They break up the paragraphs, keep your reader’s attention, and a picture can make or break an article. Using Canva with a stock photo website can really enhance any content.
For your next article or post use Canva to create featured images that instantly snare your reader.
Put the title of your article on your featured image. It helps organize your articles, gives your reader a reason to click on the article, and creates a visual aesthetic for your website’s home page.
Featured image created with Canva
You can also create personalized infographics, images, and illustrations that showcase your content. The site has a drag and drop interface that allows you to take any of their templates and make it your own.
Example of an infographic made with Canva
2. Sell Yourself with an Impressive and Professional Looking Media Kit
Sample media kit template using Canva
A media kit isn’t just for the companies making it big and looking for advertisers. It’s also a way to promote your writing and business, and you need one.
Don’t know what a media kit is? I didn’t either until I attended a travel writing and blogging conference. A media kit is a way to promote the total package that is you. It goes beyond a cover letter and portfolio.
Resume template you can retool for a media kit
A media kit is your portfolio, your bio, a headshot, your contact information, your goals and objectives and what you bring to the table all wrapped up in one distinctive package.
And if you’re just starting out and don’t think you have enough to fill even a page, start your media kit anyway. You’ll be surprised at how quickly it will fill up.
3. Canva Can Set Your Social Media Profiles Apart from the Crowd
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, these are the basic platforms that we as writers, authors, and freelancers use daily to promote our businesses, blogs, and books. Using Canva to create eye catching posts will help you get noticed, as opposed to floundering in the mire that is the hundreds of tweets and posts that go out every second.
Canva actually has social media templates, so whether you are creating a Tweet, Instagram Post, or Facebook Post, the majority of the groundwork is done for you.
You can make Pinterest worthy Tweets and pictures that aren’t just copying and pasting someone else’s work.
Writers love tweeting quotes. Created using a Twitter template on Canva
You can even create customizable Twitter and Facebook headers. A professional looking header says a lot.
Twitter Header Template available for free on Canva
These are just a few ways to use Canva to truly boost your business and writing. The website has so many tools and designs to help freelance writers, authors, and bloggers, but is rarely toted as doing so.
You can design a logo, create snappy graphics and featured images on your blog posts that grab the reader’s attention. You can also create a professional media kit. And its user-friendly interface and wide selection of templates, graphics and texts assures that the process is quick and easy which leaves you more time for writing and promotion.
Guest post contributed by Kay Vandette. Kay is a freelance writer, blogger, and travel writer with an eclectic collection of interests. She also runs a website dedicated to all things writing, chronicling her beginnings as a full-time freelancer. Also check her out on Twitter.