In the early days of social media, it was enough to post regularly about interesting and relevant material. As various social media platforms became more crowded, it became necessary to create more visually appealing content to ensure people would stop scrolling long enough to see what you had to say. This could be accomplished with great images or inspiring quotes on an attractive static background.
Unfortunately, neither of these tactics are enough to garner the kind of interest and engagement now needed to captivate the attention of the algorithms that determine how many people will actually see the post you've worked so hard to create. According to most social media marketing experts, video is one of the best tools to take your business to the next level.
Fortunately, many businesses have developed apps to make creating compelling video and animation accessible to all business owners.
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Canva has been a popular graphic design tool for years. It has been used by individuals and marketers of all levels to make stunning flyers, social media posts, business cards and so much more. Recently, Canva rolled out Canva Animator, which gives users the ability to create the same beautiful posts that can now be animated with six different effects for free or a small fee. This is a fantastic feature, especially for brands that are already accustomed to working with the Canva platform. Even those who have never used Canva or any other graphic design software will find the mechanics very user-friendly. Once the design is ready, you can download your animation in either a GIF or movie format, depending on where you wish to use the post.
Spark Video is a true game-changer. This tool is completely free and made by Adobe, which is a leader in the graphic design industry. The easy-to-use interface creates beautiful videos that can contain your own graphics, video clips, icons, images or text. It also gives the option to search for free graphics covered by creative commons license or the Adobe digital library, which has an extensive collection of materials you can purchase.
The platform has a remarkable number of free themes to make it easy for anyone to create stunning videos that feel professionally crafted. The free music library further elevates the final creation. This platform has a robust support team that's constantly finding creative ways to offer new features.
Crello is similar to Canva in many ways. The functionality and ease of use are at about the same level, and Crello is also free. Where Crello jumps to the next level is the fully customizable animated posts. While Canva allows you to animate the text of your post, Crello provides fully animated post templates. All you have to do is add your text, save and upload to your favorite social media site. These files are saved as MP4 and can be played anywhere that allows video. [Interested in social media marketing solutions? Check out our top picks.]
Lumen5 is a great option for businesses of all sizes that produce regular blog content. Of course, you want to use this content to inform your audience, but how much engagement does it get when you post a link on social media leading back to the new post? According to some of the latest statistics, it probably isn't all that much. However, Lumen5 allows you to easily turn blog content from any website into a stunning video. The free service automatically pulls images and words from your posts, which you can then customize as needed to create a video that tells the story for you. Make it interesting enough to keep people watching, but leave the audience wanting more to encourage them to click through for the full story. Free, pro and business plans are available.
Quik is a free phone app that allows anyone with an Apple or Android device to quickly and easily piece together images and videos into captivating movies. Even if it's only a few seconds long, Quik can make the difference in how engaging your content is. It offers a huge selection of templates that you can individually customize to make it look as though hours of editing and design went into each video you create. Do not discount this powerful piece of software simply because it is on mobile platforms.
Remember, there are many ways to use animated posts, GIFs or videos other than as posts on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Twitter. You can use them as a profile or cover image and in advertisements. In all of these venues, moving images convert better than text or static images. Once you become proficient in creating high-engagement animated or video posts, consider implementing them in other areas to earn even more interest and attention in your brand.