How to Create Gorgeous Graphics For Your Business & Blog
You’ve seen beautifully-branded websites, blogs, social media posts, opt-ins & freebies with custom designs everywhere online...
And you probably think you'd need to hire a graphic designer or learn complicated design software (yeah right) to make stunning content that stands out online for your business.
I’ve been using a free application called Canva to make almost ALL of my graphics for my business - and my clients’ - for years to create everything from blog post images, opt-ins, Pinterest graphics, Facebook ads, website banners, to printable pdfs.
There are a lot of programs out there, but many of them weren't built to create eye-catching opt-in incentives, content upgrades, or freebies to send to your hottest new leads and subscribers.
In fact, I've seen a lot of "meh" PDFs come through my inbox that were clearly made through these programs.
A couple months ago, someone sent me a PDF guide on "essential" website design and mistakes to avoid that looked like it was made in 2004. Mismatched fonts, cheesy images, and no cohesive look or feel to it.
Yeah - not going to take any website - or design - advice from someone who sends me a boring, crappy PDF.
So instead of sending "meh" stuff to your list or leads...
Let's make something awesome and make your content look like the pro you are. :)
Canva makes it super easy to create custom designs that look professional at the same time. They offer tons of templates, layouts, and design elements & features, so you don’t need to have design skills to use it.
In this video, I’ll show you how to create a workbook pdf you can use as an opt-in incentive or lead magnet, and send it to your list of subscribers. You can also create worksheets, checklists, or any other valuable content for your audience - the options are really endless!
Create a Canva Account and Login
If you don’t have an account with Canva, just click here to create your free account.
Once you’ve logged in and see your dashboard, click the Create a Design button on the left side.
You'll see a variety of templates to choose from, but since we're going to be making a workbook, choose the “US Letter” template.
Creating the Workbook Cover
You'll see on the left of your blank workspace is your design menu where you can choose from hundreds of shapes, layouts, and text blocks.
Choose or Upload an Image
Since I'm starting from scratch with this workbook, I'm going to click on the Uploads tab.
This is where you can upload your own images to use in your designs, and since I already have one I want to use, I'll select it and drag it onto the white workspace area.
If you want to upload an image, just click the 'Upload Your Own Image' button and select the file you want to use.
Once it's uploaded, click on the image thumbnail and it'll be placed into your work area.
Then you can resize your image by clicking the corner and dragging it to the size you want, and adjust it into place.
Adding Shape Elements
Next I want to add some square block elements to the workbook cover, so I'll go over to the design menu and click the Elements tab and choose Shapes. Then choose the first square shape.
Change the Color of Elements
You can change the colors of these blocks, too! Just select the square color box at the top. You'll see general colors to choose from, or you can click the ' + ' and choose a custom color.
Adding Headings & Text Blocks
Now I want to add a title for my workbook, so I'll go to the design menu and click on the Text tab and choose Add Heading.
Then there's tons of fonts to choose from! Just click the font menu at the top and you can browse through to see which ones you want to use. You can also change the size, color, and character & line spacing.
Creating the Workbook
Now that I've customized the cover, I want to add another page to start the actual workbook, so I'll click the Add a New Page button underneath my cover page.
Then I'll add some more heading text for my title and description of the page, as well as some shape elements to break up some of the content I'll be putting in.
This is where the fun comes in! Feel your way around and try out different elements, colors, fonts, and shapes to find what you like the best.
Here are some tricks and tips to help you along the way:
Grouping & Copying Elements
You can combine 2 or more elements to make a custom one, like the numbered circle I made below. But if you want to make more than one of these, it would be a huge hassle to have to start over each time, right?
That's where the Group and Copy buttons come to the rescue!
If you want to duplicate or resize more than one element together, just click and drag your cursor over the elements until their container boxes are highlighted.
Then click the Group button at the top.
Now that you've grouped these elements, click the Copy button to duplicate the element group, and voila!
You've got a copy of your custom-made element!
If you want to rotate any of the elements, just click on the element you want to move, and then on the little curved arrow that appears at the bottom of it and turn it however you'd like.
Save & Download Your Workbook!
Be sure to rename your workbook by clicking the title at the top. (One will have been automatically saved by Canva based on the text you entered at the start.)
Canva saves as you go, but it's smart to make sure it's saved before you download your final draft.
Just go to the top left of the page and click File > Save.
Next, it's time to download your workbook!
Go to the top right of the page and click Download.
Next, you can choose the File Type - JPEG, PNG, PDF (standard pr print), and for this workbook I'll choose standard PDF.
Finally, click the Download button and your workbook will be saved to your computer, and you're done!
Now you have a gorgeous workbook you can send to your email list subscribers, or offer as a free opt-in/lead magnet!
I've never used another application or software that allows you to create professional-looking graphics this quickly and easily, and I know you'll love it too.
Leave me a comment below and let me know if you have any questions or if you use any tools you love to use!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: KATIE BRIMMER
Hey! I'm Katie. I help service-based business owners just like you create stunning websites & smart marketing strategies designed to help you stand out online so you can start turning visitors into paying clients and take your business to the next level.