Growth graphics are brand graphics that have the goal of growing your business in some way. This could be to encourage sales or warm people up for the sale, connect with your audience more deeply and create community and engagement, grow your audience and get your brand in front of more people or to establish your expertise and credibility as a brand.
These type of graphics are powerful as they are goal oriented and can help build your brand identity while growing your business.
Have you tried using graphics to grow your business and struggled to know how best to go about it, or have you considered created graphics for growth but not sure what would work for your business?
Growth graphics can be a fast way to get your work and ideas seen and but if you are stuck on where to start or how to make them work for your business, then you will never be able to harness their power.
Here are a few mistakes I see business owners make and how you can overcome them so you can start creating powerful strategic graphics that will grow your business.
1. Only copying other people's viral graphic ideas.
While you can get a lot of inspiration from other people's viral graphics and can occasionally create similar concepts, if you are always copying what you see other people having success with and never creating anything original or trying new things, you just end up blending in and not standing out. While you should NEVER copy someone else's post exactly, even just doing something very similar or only doing very trending styles can leave you failing to stand out.
Get inspired by others yes, but find ways to add your own unique spin and try to sprinkle in completely new ideas, don't be afraid to experiment to find your own unique style and voice, because this is what will allow your brand to stand out.
Start by considering who your audience is, rather than what your competition is doing. What message will speak to them and resonate with them? What will tap into their current thoughts, feelings, desires and struggles?
Think outside the box, look at what you encounter everyday and get inspired by the real world, not just by other graphics.
2. Not diversifying your graphics.
If you only ever post viral graphics or only ever post educational graphics, you will exhaust your audience and fail to grow in other areas. You need to have a healthy mix of different graphics and media for healthy growth. This includes viral graphics to grow your audience, sales graphics to sell your offers, content graphics to establish your expertise and provide value for your audience and connection graphics to foster community and connect with your audience on a deeper level.
You will have seasons of focussing more on one type of graphic than another, but it is important to add some variety and not over do one type.
Keep in mind the platforms too. Some platforms will lend themselves more toward certain types of graphics over others, so you may want to focus on content graphics on Pinterest but on the sales, viral and connect graphics more on Instagram and Facebook. The twitter will lend itself mostly to viral graphics.
3. Not playing to your strengths.
If you aren't sure how to make growth graphics work for your brand, start by considering your strengths. This is how you can create something more unique and also establish your own style and voice. It will also come more naturally to you and so will be easier to make and allow you to shine.
So if you are an illustrator, create illustrated graphics and illustrated quote graphics. If you are an artist, create beautiful painted backgrounds and patterns to use in your graphics. If you are a photographer, use your photos in your graphics. If you are a great writer, create clever witty text-based graphics, quotes and memes.
This is how your graphics can really shine, by knowing what your strengths and your weaknesses are, and playing to your strengths when creating graphics.
And if you really struggle with design, use templates as a base. You can customise them to suit your brand and still add your own unique twist, but they will help you produce well designed graphics, if that isn't your thing.
4. Not bringing it to life.
Graphics aren't an email or blog post, so utilise that visual element of graphics to bring your graphics to life. Get creative with colour, typography, graphics, layout, illustrations, animations and line. You can use infographics and illustrations or mockups to explain things or bring them to life. You can also create clever concepts and layouts even for simple things, like putting a simple quote on a notification pop up, or putting a list on an illustrated notepad design. There are so many creative things you can do.
This is especially important for sales graphics. This is your chance do draw people in and get them excited by using not just words but also visuals. Consider how you can capture your audiences attention, makie it exciting and bring what you are offering to life to make it feel tangible.
5. Not maintaining a consistent brand identity
If you are too busy trying to imitate other people's graphics or simply have no clear brand direction you can end up looking like a hodge podge mess. Growth graphics help cement your brand identity and consistently put it in front of your audience to make you memorable and recognisable, so it is important to establish a brand identity and stick with it. Creating templates using your brand colour, fonts and graphic elements can help you stay consistent and on brand all the time.
And if you haven't yet, make sure you have a clear brand identity, and one that communicates your brand message and attracts the right people as this will make a big difference in the effectivness of yoru graphics and brand building efforts.
6. Not having a unique style
If you look like everyone else, it's going to make it harder for you to grow. You need a unique identity, style and voice. Get clear on your brand's style, your messaging and look at what others in your industry are doing and consider what you can do to set yourself apart. For example, if your industry is saturated with soft pinks and gentle cursive fonts, then using dark blue and strong serif fonts is going to set you apart. Or if your industry is full of very formal, professional language and graphic styles, then be a little quirky and using humour will set you apart. It doesn't need to be too extreme or out there, but consider how you can be a bit different and make yourself more recognisable.
There is something called 'The Von Restorff effect', also known as the "isolation effect". It predicts that when multiple homogeneous stimuli are presented, the stimulus that differs from the rest is more likely to be remembered. Practically that means, that if you want your graphics to be memorable and stand out, they need to be different. A good way to test this, is to go to a relevant hashtag and look at all the graphics, what about them makes them similar, and how could you do something that would stand out amongst them.
7. Know who you are trying to attract and talk to
If you aren't clear on who you want to attract and connect with, but simply put out whatever you feel like, you may find you attract the wrong people or struggle to really connect with a clear audience. The more you get to know exactly who you are targeting and where they are at, how they feel and what they want, you can get better and better at creating content that really speaks to them and they get excited to share and engage with. You could easily end up attracting all the wrong people if you aren't strategic about it. An easy trap to fall into is attracting other people doing the same thing as you, rather than the people you want as customers and clients. You will always have some people within your own industry wanting to follow you, but be careful not to creating mostly content for them, as they are ultimately not going to be buyers.
BONUS- Giving up too soon
Growth isn't going to suddenly happen overnight. It takes consistently showing up and sharing to establish a memorable and recognisable brand. Things will speed up over time, but those early days may feel frustrating and you may wonder if what you are doing will even work. The key is to keep at it, stay consistent, engage with others and your audience and try different things to see how people respond. This allows you to get to know your audience and what they like so you can hone in on what works for you.
Once you find your groove with creating growth graphics, you will be batching them out in no time and using them to great effect.
Keep at it, keep testing and refining.
So get creating. Start designing graphics fro growth and watch your brand blossom.
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