Ok, so social media–particularly Facebook–hasn’t had a great few weeks in the news. But before you either panic (if you’re a social media enthusiast) or rejoice (if you’ve been waiting for this pesky fad to end), take a step back and remember that social media isn’t going anywhere. According to Pew Research Center’s recent survey on social media use in 2018, almost 70% of U.S. adults report that they use Facebook, most on a daily basis, and almost 90% of 18- to 29-year-olds use some form of social media. So, fear not–all the time and effort you’ve put into growing your organization’s social media presence will not end up being time wasted…social media, for better or for worse, is here to stay.
This is good news for organizations using these platforms to raise awareness, drive engagement, connect with people who care about their causes, drive web traffic and donations and just generally meet people where they are online. The not so good news is that one of the main challenges of social media continues to be competing for attention amidst all the noise, especially when you’re captive to the whims of ever-changing algorithms. Your best bet at breaking through the noise and capturing people’s attention? Video and images.
While the necessity of images and video for social media success is no big deal for brands with big budgets and creative teams, it’s not that easy for the rest of us mere mortals working with shoestring budgets and limited staff resources. How can a low- or no-budget organization create the multimedia assets that are essential for social media success? While we don’t have all the answers (although we know a few things about this stuff), we’re constantly on the lookout for free or cheap creative tools that can help make our clients (and our) lives a bit easier.
Here are 5 tools that we’ve come across lately that are definitely worth checking out:
- Need graphics? Snappa makes it easy to create any type of online graphic…and for free. Even with no design savvy whatsoever, you can create social media images and banners with Snappa’s free stock images and templates, custom infographics, and even web ads.
- Love listening to podcasts and wish you had either the budget or the tech savvy to produce one? Check out Anchor for absolute ease…and absolutely free. Looking for something a bit more advanced but still super easy and affordable? We haven’t tried these yet but ZCast and Cast both look really cool.
- Have great content that you wish you could afford to repurpose into video? Lumen5 lets you transform articles into videos in minutes….really. Their free forever plan lets you create unlimited videos with millions of free images and sound files.
- How cool would it be to host an interactive video show? Clipisode can make it so! It’s essentially a “talk show in a box” that gives you the capability to create a video asking your audience a question; share it via text, web and/or social media; capture their video clips, then create a professional-looking video that’s automatically sized for social media sharing once it’s ready to go. We’re going to be trying this one out ourselves.
- Getting tired of using the same old GIFs and wish you knew how to create your own instead of relying on what’s already out there? There are a bunch of ways to easily create GIFs from video hosted on YouTube or Vimeo. This article provides step-by-step directions for creating GIFs from video with Gifs.com or Giphy; if you have a Mac, GIF Brewery also looks really cool.
Our team believes in the power of DIY, but also in being strategic and intentional when creating video and other assets that tell your organization’s story or represent your brand. We offer training, support and collaboration packages that can help you maximize your DIY efforts, as well as free creative consults. Feel free to reach out to us…and also let us know in the comments if you have other DIY creative tools you love.