With the proliferation of platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, investing in social media is more important than ever. But you already know that. What you might not know is that you may be be losing money through your social marketing. After all, only the most eye-catching content can survive in this age of short attention spans. Gifs, graphics and videos can get that attention, but making them can get expensive. Thankfully, it’s easy to make social content in PowerPoint.
Want to boost your brand by making free social content in PowerPoint? Read on.
Channels For Social Content in PowerPoint
Whatever you post and wherever you post it, keep it visual. According to Social Media Today, content with relevant images gets 94% more views than content without imagery. From there, the channels you should be focusing on come back to the audience you want to capture. Makes sense, doesn’t it? After all, a Snapchat strategy would be useless if you were trying to target senior citizens.
Below are the key demographics of every major social media channel, courtesy of Sprout Social.
Facebook supports all forms of content: texts, pictures, gifs, and videos. It was even the first social media platform to pioneer 360 degree videos and other VR support. That said, it has been backing a strong “Video first” strategy for the past two years. In fact, Mark Zuckerberg has said that by next year, Facebook will be “Mostly video”. For this reason, consider video when designing social content in PowerPoint.
If video is the way to go on Facebook, what sort should you create? It depends on your audience. For Facebook, the majority of users appear to be in the 18-29 year old demographic. 88% of 18-29 year olds surveyed by Sprout Social use Facebook. 84% of of 30 – 49 year olds use Facebook as well. While they are slightly less prominent than younger demographics, they are often more likely to give companies their all-valuable shares. Much of this is attributed to Facebook’s easy social sharing tools helping us share content as a kind of social interaction and statement. Think of how we tease younger siblings by tagging them in videos which say second-born children are more likely to be criminals. With older Facebook users focusing more sharply on connecting with tighter groups of people, they tend to be the biggest sharers of such “tribal” visual content.
While not as prominent as on other social media platforms, Facebook demographics continue to skew heavily toward women. Eighty-three percent of adult women use the network, compared to 75% of men. For this reason, Facebook is ideal for creating highly visual content that resonates with older women while encouraging them to tag and share with close friends and family. Ensure that you use PowerPoint to make such content eye-catching, and ensure it contains strong calls to social action.
While it’s easily the second most popular social media platform, Instagram is nowhere near as widely used as Facebook. The aspirational, highly visual platform supports photos, videos and “Boomerangs” (looped videos similar to gifs). An impressive 59% of 18–29 year olds use Instagram, while only 33% of 30–49 year olds use the image sharing service. In addition, 38% of online women use Instagram compared to only 28% of online men.
The service is primarily used for posting and following filtered photos. Users follow influencers they admire to fill their feed with pleasing content. To stand out in any feed, you must incorporate graphic design in your photos through PowerPoint. For make the most of this, we recommend highly visual photos with a few simple design elements to make it stand out.
In addition, any content you create for this platform should feature relevant hashtags. Not only does this drive users directly to your content, it can automatically increase your follower count due to automated accounts targeting relevant content on larger accounts.
Twitter is unique in its high-volume, fast-paced feed. It is primarily used by younger generations, with 36% of 18–29 year olds using the platform. The gender demographics are split fairly evenly down the middle, with 25% of online women using Twitter and 24% of online men using the service. Where Twitter shines is in real-time tweeting, with event-based hash-tags and real-time reactionary content.
As Twitter is so fast-paced, PowerPoint’s ease of use can help you push relevant content out in time for maximum attention and re-tweets. Ensure your visual content is eye-catching, easily digestible, relevant, and appealing to Twitter’s young users.
According to a survey conducted by the Pew Research Centre, 50% of university graduates surveyed used LinkedIn. 45% of adults who make over $75’000 a year surveyed also used LinkedIn. For this reason, you must ensure your visual content conveys a crisp, professional tone. Stress usefulness and relevance to the professional lives of an educated, ambitious user-base.
What Should I Be Posting?
Most experts advise the 80/20 posting ratio. Post about fun, interesting things that are tangentially related to your business about 80% of the time. Post about serious promotional stuff the other 20% of the time. To lead in any industry, you must show that you have expert knowledge of your entire industry. These post ideas will show that you’re on top of your game when it comes to what you do – and that people can learn a lot from following you.
Before you can crack into creating your content, you need to consider your…
Visual Tone of Voice
Every brand has a voice and a tone. Even if you think your organisation isn’t that exciting, you need to think about tone and voice. Let’s look at how you can find them and use them:
Finding your voice
Your brand’s voice is its personality. A voice doesn’t carry through words alone, but through everything you put on your social pages. Every image. Each tweet. Every edit on every video. The more content that contains your voice, the larger the net you cast into your audience.
There are a few good exercises for finding your voice:
- Look at your most successful social posts
- Ask people outside of your office what they think about your brand
- Imagine your brand as a person. McDonald’s is a clown. Jack Daniel’s is a cowboy. Who’s your brand supposed to be?
- Ask what your voice isn’t.
Finding your tone
Your brand’s tone is how you express your voice to the audience at hand. Though you need to keep your voice consistent, you obviously need to adjust your tone depending on your message.
When thinking about your voice, you need to think about yourself. For your tone, you need to think about your audience. What news are they expecting from you? Just imagine that you have to deliver the news in person.
For the most part, your social media posts should be entirely visual. For this reason, you need to consider your visual voice. Here are a few considerations to build a consistent visual voice:
- Brand colours – Obviously you should use these in everything you design, but get creative! Look for your brand colours in the outside world and photograph accordingly.
- Consistent imagery – Your followers should be able to tell what you’re posting without seeing that you’re posting it. Try and add the same products and motifs across your images.
- Adjectives – Does your brand look cosy? Simple? Industrial? Write a few adjectives down and make sure everything you post is making the mark.
A brand which reflects these flawlessly is Kikki.K, the Swedish stationery company. Just have a look at their Instagram feed:
They keep their colours consistent: millennial pink, rose gold, black and white. Their imagery includes stationery, coffee, and other things you’re likely to find on a stylishly furnished desk.
Now think about the adjectives of these images: simple, stylish, hand-made. Each of them is Kikki.K to a tee.
Now that we’ve established the style of your content, let’s explore what you should be posting. Editing pictures is one of the easiest ways to make social content in PowerPoint. With a few clicks, you can make your photos stand out in your follower’s feeds. Just consider the following tips first:
This is the very first thing you must consider when making social content in PowerPoint. Below is a handy reference chart for the ideal dimensions of different platforms, as well as instructions on how to adjust dimensions.
First, click on the “Design” tab. Click on the “Slide Size” option on the far right and select the “Custom Slide Size…” option.
In the pop-up dialogue box, adjust the height and width according to our reference chart.
Once you have your dimensions down, it’s time to upload your photo. To do this, click on the “Insert” tab and select “Pictures” if your image is on your device.
Once your image is uploaded, crop it to the dimensions of your slide by selecting it and clicking the “Format” tab to the right of the top bar. Click the “Crop” option, and in the drop-down (crop-down?) click “Fit” then “Crop”.
As you can see, you can make all sizes of social content in PowerPoint.
Editing your image
PowerPoint has a plethora of powerful photo-editing tools. To access them, select your image and click the “Format” tab to the right of the top toolbar.
Here’s a breakdown of each from left to right:
- Remove Background – A simple tool which automatically edits out the background. If you don’t like the background which has been selected, you can manually adjust the selection. This is foundational for creating one of the most effective forms of social content in PowerPoint: Collage.
- Corrections – This panel lets you sharpen and soften your image. You can also use it to increase your brightness and contrast.
- Color – This option does what it says on the tin: adjusts the colour of your pictures.
- Artistic effects – Similar to Photoshop’s “Filters”, this can edit your images in all sorts of interesting ways.
- Picture Styles – This option gives you borders, gradients, and other interesting styles to play with in your image.
To add text to your photo, click the “Insert” tab and go to either “Text Box” or “WordArt”.
Personally we prefer text box as it’s more dynamic, but we’re not your parents. Go nuts. Once you’ve typed your text, you can adjust it and add all sorts of effects under the “Home” tab.
A few essential tips for adding text to your photos:
- Be sparing. Use only attention-grabbing keywords like “Sale” or “New”
- Pick a font that complements your brand’s identity
- Don’t obscure the original picture (especially on Instagram)
- Read our post on the 5 Essential Font Rules
PROTIP: There’s a science to selecting the right images for your feed. To make sure you get it right, be sure to read our post on Choosing the Right Images for Your PowerPoint Presentations.
Top Graphic Design Tips
By using contrasting colours, you have a better chance of contrasting with the rest of your follower’s feed.
PROTIP: Contrast is just one of many ways to make information stand out in your content. Be sure to read our post on 5 Ways to Highlight Information in Design.
Create a consistent colour scheme
While you should always strive for quality in your posts, quantity is the best way to keep grabbing attention. For this reason, your visual identity needs to remain consistent in everything you post. To do this quickly, establish a uniform colour scheme.
Keep it simple
After all, clutter can keep followers from being captivated by your content.
PROTIP: Simplicity is a principle you should apply anytime you design social content in PowerPoint. Be sure to read our article on how to simplify your content.
Never use naked images
Opt for grids and frames to give your posts a recognisable style. Look at the fashionable feed for the famous clothing brand “MIGHTY KILLERS”
The distinctive black frame gives each post serious character points. These are incredibly easy to insert in PowerPoint. Simply click on your image, resize it, and click on the “Format background” option. To add a smaller border around your initial image, insert a shape through the “Insert” tab. If your shape is appearing over your image, right-click on your shape and select “Send to Back”. To create collages featuring multiple images, insert multiple images through the “Insert” tab then resize and move them to your wishes.
PROTIP: Grids are incredibly handy when creating social content in PowerPoint. To make the most of them, read our post on how to improve your content with grid layouts.
According to the statistics, video is incredibly important for engagement on social media. Make sure you consider the following when editing this engaging social content in PowerPoint:
Say you want an image to fade onto the screen. Simply select the image, click the “Animations” tab at the top of the screen, then select the “Appear” option. Perhaps you want another image to move from off screen to the centre? Simply select that image, click the “Animations” tab again, activate the drop-down menu, and go to “Motion Paths.” Select the path you’d like your image to travel along, or create a custom path. Once you’ve done that, adjust the start and end points to your preference. And there you have it!
Now that you have multiple elements of motion to manage, you must consider their sequence. This can be done in the animation pane.
Mastering the animation pane
When you’re managing the many moving elements of your social content in PowerPoint, the animation pane is your best friend. To access it, go to the “Animations” tab at the top of the screen and click “Animation Pane” next to “Add animation.” This pane removes the pain of having unorganised elements, allowing you to sequence your animations, set the timing of videos, and order every moving element of your marvelous video.
By right clicking on each element here, you can adjust how and when each animation starts. With the large arrows in the top right, you can move each element up and down in the timeline.
There are plenty of in-built options for creating animated social content in PowerPoint, including motion paths and preset 2D animations. As well as these, there are engaging animations for 3D objects. Read more about them here.
Working with live action video in PowerPoint
Not only does PowerPoint have a number of options for inserting live-action video, it can even create screen-recorded videos for you. To access either of these options, click the “Insert” tab and go to the far right.
Under the “Video” option, you’ll find options for inserting videos from online or your own PC. The Screen Recording option on the right offers an interesting way to work a screen recording into your PowerPoint. Clicking this option will activate a popup on the program you had open before PowerPoint.
As you can see, this tool has options allowing you to record a narration, your pointer or a particular area of the screen. Whatever you do with these tools, you’re sure to create engaging social content in PowerPoint.
Whatever you do with video, it must be engaging without editing. To a certain extent, the same rule applies when creating any social content in PowerPoint. The foundation of this is framing your shot. To frame your subject well, position them in a well-lit space.
It’s important to remember that you don’t need a professional photography studio to create stunning social content in PowerPoint. Say you want to film a statement from your CEO to share on LinkedIn. First, set them up in a room with light levels you can control. Take advantage of the space behind them by filling it with material relevant to your company, such as your logo or notable products. From there, position your camera on a tripod or steady surface. Once you have done this, adjust the camera so the content within its frame aligns with the “rule of thirds”.
By aligning important objects along these lines and focusing your subject on their intersections, you add eye-pleasing balance to your social content in PowerPoint.
When designing social content in PowerPoint, you can apply all sorts of style effects to the video files you import. Simply right click on the video you import and select the “Style” option.
From there, scroll through the many options available to you.
Let’s say you want a statement from your CEO to look particularly professional. Start by turning your first “Slide” into your video’s title-card. To do this, select an appropriate background by clicking on the “Design” tab. You can pick a pre-made theme or format your own.
From there, you can place text on your title-card by clicking the “Insert” tab and inserting a text box. Click on the text, then click “Animations” to find a suitable reveal animation. Once you’ve done this, insert a new slide and apply a transition to your title-card slide. In the “Timing” section of the “Transitions” tab, click on the “Advance slide after” option and put it to your preferred time.
This ensures a smooth transition when exporting your PowerPoint to video.
Now, insert your video into your second slide. Right-click on the video in the animation pane and select “Start with previous”. This will ensure it starts smoothly at the end of the title-card’s transition when you export your PowerPoint to video. If you want an overlay of the name or title of the video’s subject to show on-screen, simply insert an appropriate shape (through the “Insert” tab) then insert text over the top of it. As you did with the text on your title-card, you can make these appear on screen with an animation. Simply adjust their timing in the animation pane so it doesn’t appear prematurely.
To add credits to your video, insert a new slide and repeat what you did with your title card.
To make an image fade onto the screen, start by selecting the image. Click the “Animations” tab at the top of the screen and select the “Appear” option.
Perhaps you want another image to move from off screen to the centre of the slide. Simply select that image, click the “Animations” tab again, click “Add Animation” and go to “Motion Paths”.
Select the path you’d like your image to travel along, or create a custom path. Set the start and end points to your preference, and there you have it! Easy, animated social content in PowerPoint.
Exporting your PowerPoint into video
To achieve this, you must first ensure that no part of your PowerPoint is activated by a click. Once you have automated all of your animations and transitions, click File -> Export -> Create Video. Don’t worry about the “Time Spent on Each Slide” option, as that only applies to static, unautomated slides.
Making gifs is easy. All you need to do is create a video in PowerPoint, export it, then convert the file into a gif. This can be as simple as uploading the video on a website like ezgif.com. If you are creating a gif, you must remember that gifs do not feature sound. They must also be short, as they play and replay automatically.
Cinemagraphs are an easy, effective kind of gif. You only need two frames of animation to highlight an important part of a photo. Have a look at the examples below for a little inspiration.
Want more inspiration for moving content? Pop over to our portfolio page, or read here about how to use animation to improve your organisation’s message.
Graphs, infographics, and gifographics
We know this sounds boring, but think about it. If your followers are scrolling through their feed as fast as their fingers can flick, they’ll want information conveyed quickly. Graphs and infographics give your followers a great deal of information fast. It’s also incredibly simple to make this kind of social content in PowerPoint.
Remember, just because they’re the sort of thing you see in board meetings doesn’t mean they’ve got to be boring.
To make a great graph in PowerPoint, go to Insert → Chart.
You can then insert any sort of graphic you want. This is often the perfect option for LinkedIn posts.
Infographics are only an amalgamation of every element you’ve already mastered. They’re also incredibly useful for breaking down complex information.
To start building your infographic, go to Design → Slide Size → Custom Slide Size.
In the pop-up menu, adjust your width to at least 21.17 cm. This translates to 800 pixels, which is roughly the ideal width for most infographics.
Adjust your height to 52.92 cm, but don’t worry about stretching or squashing your content to fit this. Start building your infographic and adjust your height accordingly as you go.
Gifographics are infographics with a few simple animated elements. Adding animation can highlight important parts of your infographic, while making your content more visually engaging.
General design tips
- Keep a consistent style – This goes for designing any social content in PowerPoint. Anything you post should be recognisable as yours in any feed, so pick one style and stick to it.
- Make graphs fun and simple – For starters, no line graphs. Nobody likes ’em. And try to make them look like anything other than the ones which bore you to death at work.
- Consider where they will be published – If you’re making a graph for LinkedIn, make it look professional and relevant to your industry. For something like Twitter, keep it fun and cartoony.
- Make it an interesting topic – Did you know that the White House orders more pizza during states of emergency? Find the sort of data people will want to share.
- Stay aware of size – Find the size of the preview square for your platform, and make sure your graph/infographic fits inside it.
PROTIP: If you do decide to post graphs and charts, remember to keep a balance. To find out what that balance is, read our post on How to Balance Statistics in Your Content.
If you want to share a link to long-form content, it’s not enough to simply share the link. To catch the eye of followers flicking through their feeds, it’s best to include a teaser image. Let’s say you want to share a link to your blog on Facebook. Blow the title of your blog up in PowerPoint, include an eye-catching image in your background, and ensure the dimensions are exact.
Get different employees to create different content
One of the best ways to bring variety to your social channels is to feature posts from different employees in your organisation. Each week, let another employee take over the feed. PowerPoint makes it possible for any of your employees to design interesting new content for your channels.
Showing your product in stop-motion
An easy and eye-grabbing way to show off your product is through stop-motion.
As well as spicing up your feed, it’s so easy to create this kind of social content in PowerPoint.
Creating Stop Motion Content in Five Easy Steps:
- Under the “Design” tab, adjust the size of your slides to the platform you’ll be posting on.
- Take photos of your product at each stage of the animation. You could show it activating, opening, or anything you can imagine!
- Upload your photos to your device in a shared folder. Now, insert them through Insert → Photo Album → New Photo Album.
- Click “Insert Picture from File/Disk”, drag your cursor over each photo, and click “Insert”. Now you only need to click “Create” back in the pop-up menu.
- Size each image correctly. Click “Transitions”. Adjust your Duration to no longer than 10 seconds. Next to Duration, adjust the “After” option to 0.5 seconds. Click “Apply to All”, then view the slideshow in presentation mode.
Before you export, you can add text and shapes to enhance your stop-motion. Once you’re done, click File → Export → Create a Video.
Design a Squeeze Page
Wait, what’s a squeeze page? Well, they’re the pages where websites ask you to give them your email address. To get more people to sign up for your newsletter, one of the best social media content ideas is a link to your squeeze page. This will give people direct access to the place where they can sign up to get more of your content. Below are a few tips for making a squeeze page that maximises audience engagement:
As with everything you design, you should keep your branding colours consistent. With that in mind, you need to make the most important parts of your page stand out from your branding colours. For instance, if your branding colours are blue and black, make your subscribe button red and white. This can get complicated, so on that note…
Keep it simple
Your squeeze page needs to cast a wide net. To do that, you must make the page as accessible as possible. Don’t bombard your users with forms. Instead, keep it to one button or box.
When Should I Post?
Unfortunately, there is no universal perfect posting time. The answer to the question of when you should be posting depends on the content, your industry, your audience, your platform, and whether or not you’re running paid or organic content. According to an in-depth study by CoSchedule, there are a few broad rules for the best time to post on each platform. We’ve summarised them for you below:
The best time to post on Facebook is 1–4 p.m. late into the week and on weekends.
- Saturday and Sunday, between 12 and 1 p.m.
- Thursday and Friday, between 1 and 4 p.m.
- Wednesday at 3 p.m.
When to post on Facebook in general to increase your shares and clickthroughs:
- 1 p.m.
- 3 p.m.
- 9 a.m.
Tweets can generally be sent out on any day of the week, and will see the most activity during commutes. Business to business tweets work best on weekdays, while individuals are mostly on during weekends (which isn’t surprising). In all of this, your ideal tweeting times are:
- Wednesday, between 12 and 1 p.m and 5 to 6 p.m.
- Monday to Friday, between 12 and p.m and 5 to 6 p.m.
Pinterest users are most active on Saturdays, especially later at night. Avoid posting during work hours, but try for these hours:
- Saturdays at 8–11 p.m.
- Fridays at 3 p.m.
LinkedIn sees high readership from business people during their daily commutes. To this end, the ideal time to post is between 5 and 6 p.m on weekdays. More specifically:
- Tuesday between 10 and 11 a.m.
- Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday between 7:30 and 8:30 a.m, 12 p.m, and 5 to 6 p.m.
Since it’s primarily a mobile platform, Instagram audiences are engaged throughout the week. Give the following times the most love:
- Monday and Thursday at any time other than 3 to 4 p.m.
- Videos any day at 9 p.m. to 8 a.m.
So now you’ve made your social content in PowerPoint. You’ve posted it to the fanfare of your followers. Now how do you keep the engagement going?
Post during active times
The times we mentioned above are the ideal times for engaging users. On top of those, you should aim for public holidays and long weekends. On a slightly related note…
Stay relevant with quick turn-around times
In today’s digital age, news travels around the world in seconds. Trends live and die in the blink of an eye. To succeed, you need to stay quick and relevant.
As an example, look into Oreo’s famous Super Bowl tweet. During a power outage at the 2013 Super Bowl, Oreo tweeted an image with the caption “You can still dunk in the dark”. The tweet went viral, earning them even more impressions than their multi-million dollar half-time commercial.
Thankfully, you can make social content in PowerPoint in seconds. With such a fast turn-around, you can increase your reach by staying relevant to the second. Of course, if you really want to increase your reach…
Use relevant hash-tags
Trust us, nobody hates having to sift through heaps of hash-tags more than we do. That’s why we beg you to use relevant hash-tags.
Let’s say you run a deli. Throwing #food onto a photo of your artisan cheese-wheels won’t set the world on fire. Instead, see if there are any hash-tags for your local food scene. Maybe there’s an artisan cheese festival in your area people are hash-tagging. Have those in your post and you’ll be able to engage with an interested audience. As you open yourself up to a larger audience, you must remember to…
Know your audience
How do they talk to one another? What are they following you for? It’s important to understand how to interact with your followers, because you need to…
Follow up on interactions
If people ask questions, answer them. If someone leaves a well thought-out comment, thank them for it! Your followers want to feel like they’re interacting with you, not just blindly following a brand.
Of course, interactions don’t always come naturally. Sometimes they need a little encouragement. While you should never force interaction on your followers, you could consider…
Creating a poll
Twitter allows you to automatically generate polls. Facebook allows you to hold impromptu polls using different reactions. However you hold it, promote your poll with a prominent feature image. That brings us to another point…
Does your organisation offer travel insurance? Ask your followers to share their dream destinations! Maybe you sell software. Ask them what they want to see in the next update. Maybe even offer beta access to the best suggestion. Whatever interaction you encourage, always remember to…
Use images instead of statuses
With your newfound power to create social content in PowerPoint, why bother with words alone? Images are going to get you more attention, giving you the engagement you’re after. And once you’ve secured that following, you should…
Encourage fan content
Now obviously this depends entirely upon your tone and audience. That said, your fans are a great resource for interesting content. If they can do something interesting with your product, encourage them to share it! You can even use PowerPoint to create collages and montages of their content.
As you can see, it’s easy to create powerful social content in PowerPoint. Of course, it takes experience to earn engagement and followers. Experience you earn by helping build dozens of brands every day. To tap into our experience, contact our team today.[thrive_lead_lock id=’8912′]Hidden Content[/thrive_lead_lock]