1. Today Instagram released “Face Filters” as an addition to their Instagram Stories component of the app. This follows a string of updates the company has made to increase their user base and change how long-time users interact with the platform. Face filters are the latest addition to what some are calling Instagram’s move against Snapchat. Along with Face Filters, Instagram Stories now allow a video feature to play in reverse with “Rewind.” What makes Instagram Stories different than Snapchat’s interface is the hands-free option and the ability to create Boomerangs in the app. 
  2. Canva is a great (and free) platform that simplifies design creation. The website has hundreds of templates organized by project type and allows you to generate the right graphic in only a few minutes. Canva’s paid version opens up more customization and a “brand” feature that makes it easier to transfer graphics between project types and continue visual themes.
  3. Adobe Spark is a free graphic tool to add text to photos or videos. Spark allows you to use your favorite photos and within seconds create a valuable graphic. A perfect tool for everyone, from influencers and independent photographers to social media managers, the cloud-based platform enables the user to transfer their designs seamlessly from the mobile app to the desktop version. 
  4. Unsplash is a self proclaimed “photography community” that centers itself on free access to high definition, professional-grade photographs. A great alternative to stock photo websites, Unsplash has a growing library of stunning pictures, all licensed under Creative Commons Zero, which means no citation needed for any use. Although the website may not have thousands of photos for every topic, new photos are being accepted every minute. Unsplash photos have been used by bands for album covers, graphic designers for website and app backgrounds, and companies like Apple and Pringles for ad campaigns.(This is the first photo when you search “radio” on Unsplash)
  5. Over is a fantastic mobile app that allows the user to choose from hundreds of fonts and designs to overlay text on photos/graphics. Built with an intuitive interface, it only takes minutes to masterfully create a final product fit for social media platforms. Having recently integrated with Unsplash, the user has an entire library of HD photos at their disposal. While Over offers many features for free, you can pay to go “pro” which allows you to access more art, photos and graphics.
  6. Vectr is a multi-purpose online graphic design platform. While many similar online creation platforms are focused on specific products such as websites or flyers, Vectr enables the user to create a diverse array of visuals, from resumes to memes. The website simplifies the graphic design process by making great use of tutorials. Vectr’s has no shortage of useful features, including the ability to scale graphics without losing clarity and cross-platform abilities, but the option to engage in online collaborative design is an obvious standout. By simply sending a link to another member of your team, they can join the document and help edit in real-time.


What tools or programs do you use to create visual content for social media? Comment below!