Author Archives: Sarah Matista

Social media design tips

Your digital presence is important to you.

And since design is the foundation of an attractive digital presence, it’s essential to understand the elements of design to help portray the appropriate image for your business.

Chances are you will be seeking the consult of a professional graphic designer to assist you, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be well-versed in common graphic design terms.

Learning the design language will diffuse any confusion between your vision and the final product; and overall cultivate a meaningful, professional relationship.

Luckily, Pagemodo’s Cover Photo Creator and Post Designer tools easily help you design like a pro for your social media profiles. But for everything else, here’s a categorical guide for talking the talk with graphic designers:


The Process

  1. Wireframes: A basic layout that doesn’t yet have design elements.
  2. Comps: Usually when the design goes digital.
  3. Prototype: Meant to give a close idea of the working product.

The Look

  • Bleed: Allowing a design to go beyond the edge of the page so there is no margin.
  • Grid: Used in print and digital to help align elements to create consistency.
  • White Space: The area left empty to bring focus to other elements on the page.
  • Gradient: Fading from one color to another, or opaque to transparent.
  • Padding: The space between a border and the object inside of it.
  • Margin: The space between a border and the objects outside of it.

The Letters

  • Leading: How lines of text are spaced vertically, also known as line height.
  • Kerning: Adjusting the spacing between characters in a word.
  • Typography: The art of arranging type elements in attractive ways.
  • Font: A collection of characters, punctuation marks, numbers, and symbols.

The Web

  • Below the Fold: Refers to the area of the page that a user must scroll to see.
  • Responsive: A web design that adjusts the layout for different screen sizes.
  • Resolution: The number of dots per inch; 72dpi for web, 300+dpi for print.
  • Web Colors: Colors used on the web, represented by 6-digit hexadecimal codes.
  • Web Safe Fonts: Fonts that most users likely have, like Arial, Georgia, or Times.

The Acronyms

  • CMYK: Cyan, magenta, yellow, and key (black), usually used for print.
  • RGB: Red, green, and blue, generally used in digital.
  • DPI/PPI: Dots per inch / pixels per inch in design, also called the resolution.
  • UI: User interface, or the actual appearance of the design
  • UX: User experience, or the flow and behavior of the design.

The Files

  • JPEG: Join Photographic Experts Group, best for images with gradients.
  • GIF: Can be static or animated, often used in web design.
  • PSD: The format of files that come directly from Adobe Photoshop.
  • PDF: Portable Document Format. Ideal for sending materials to be printed.
  • PNG: Portable Network Graphics. Supports transparency and good for the web.

Now you should be fluent in the tricky language of design. So go forth and converse with any digital designer you may meet!

Small Business Social Media Tools

Social media marketing is only one aspect of your business. And whether you’re just getting started or finally getting serious, building a small business is easier if you have the right tools. Put in the effort to find the best tools for your business at the beginning, and you’ll save yourself a lot of time in the long run.

To help you get started, we’ve put together examples of the categories of tools you should be putting in your small business toolkit.


Website Tools

Website Building: Webs
Customer Experience: Crazy Egg
Image Editing, Design: Photoshop
Traffic Driving: Moz (formerly SEOmoz)

Social Media Tools

Content Curating: Pagemodo Posts
Page Design: Pagemodo
Image Management: Pingraphy
Engagement Analytics: Linktally

Marketing Tools

Marketing Promotion: Vistaprint
Email Marketing: Constant Contact
Display Advertising: Google AdWords
Relationship Management: ContactMe

Utility Tools

Website Analytics: Google Analytics
Cloud File Sharing: Dropbox
Financial Management: FreshBooks
Personal Organization: Evernote

These are just a sampling of all the great tools available to you. Find more ideas by searching the internet and networking with other small business owners just like you!

Social Media Posting Playbook

To succeed on social media, you need to pay close attention to what you are posting and the engagement your posts draw. So while some will say that ‘going viral’ takes a bit of luck, we think there are general patterns you can follow to appeal to your fans and followers.

We studied the effectiveness of Facebook and Twitter posts by thousands of real Pagemodo users to bring you the emerging social posting patterns to help boost your social media engagement.

In what we like to call The Posting Playbook, we guide you on what, when, and how to post based on common social media marketing goals.



  1. Get Retweeted
    1. Post Photos
    2. Avoid video and link posts
  2. Get My Facebook Posts Shared
    1. Post more videos
    2. Post in the middle of the week
  3. Get My Tweets Favorited
    1. Tweet more images
    2. Throw in some text-only tweets
  4. Get More Likes on My Facebook Post
    1. Post more images
    2. Mention holidays
    3. Post on weekends
  5. Get Maximum Engagement on Text Posts
    1. Facebook posts with the most likes and shares were 500-700 characters
    2. Tweets with the most favorites and retweets were 40-120 characters

Should I TGIF?
Yes, but on Facebook. Facebook users appear to be more excited for the weekend than Twitter users!

  • 30% more likes on Facebook posts that mention “Friday” than those that don’t.
  • 18% fewer favorites on tweets that mention “Friday.”

Are #Hashtags Still a Thing?

  • Using hashtags results in a 120% boost on Twitter.
  • Using hashtags on Facebook lowers engagement by 22%.

For a winning social media strategy try scheduling your posts to publish more frequently, and use tools like Post Designer for more visually-appealing image posts!

The Five Types of Facebook Fans

Any number of motivations and circumstances can drive Facebook fans to your company’s page. If you don’t know what they are, it’s nearly impossible to keep your fans engaged. Recognizing the types of Facebook fans will help you produce content your visitors will love, and keep your page fun and interesting for all.


  1. The Tire Kicker

Who They Are:
Someone with a passing or surface-level interest in your business who could (with the right hooks or messaging) be converted from onlooker to prospect.

How to Engage Them:
Periodically run polls to reveal your audience’s hidden motivations and unmet needs. Let the answers fuel your status updates, new promotions, blog posts, and other socially shared content.

  1. The Curious Prospect

Who They Are:
Someone who is actively searching for a solution and willing to consider your company but is not yet convinced.

How to Engage Them:
Resist the urge to pepper your page with promotion after promotion. Instead, keep a ratio of 70 percent content—funny, interesting, or unique information relevant to the prospect—and 30 percent pitch. This builds the trust and credibility that ultimately spawns a sale.

  1. The Unrelenting Skeptic

Who They Are:
Someone who knows your market, takes nothing at face value, and frequently challenges your company’s assertions.

How to Engage Them:
Thoroughly and thoughtfully answer every question the skeptic posts. You may never convince the skeptic, but your willingness to stand up to scrutiny will impress your less jaded fans.

  1. The Deal Chaser

Who They Are:
Someone who is solely a fan to take advantage of the deals, offers, and coupon codes your company puts out.

How to Engage Them:
Announce upcoming promotions and specials when non are currently underway. This will keep the deal chaser around as they await their next chance to pounce, and it will encourage them to keep coming back.

  1. The Proud Advocate

Who They Are:
A devoted fan who takes every opportunity to sing your brand’s praises to their family and friends.

How to Engage Them:
Occasionally update your company’s status with good deeds, positive customer support stories, or strong testimonials. These are the “raw materials” that your proud advocates transform into referrals and good will.

Never forget that behind every post, comment, or like is a person, each with different needs, emotions, and reasons for visiting your company’s Facebook page. Tailor your social content appropriately, and these disparate visitors will become fans for life.


How to Post on Facebook

Best practices for posting on Facebook have proven to be a moving target for marketers. This is especially problematic for small business owners who have limited time to devote to social media marketing.

We’ve put together the latest findings on what to post and when to post it, so you can manage your Facebook page and get back to business.


Why You Should Post
When you post great content, your followers will engage with it by liking, sharing and commenting.

Aside from endearing people to your brand, engaging content drives social discovery through amplification. And all those extra pairs of eyes can quickly translate into more likes, more leads, and more customers for your business.

What to Post
Facebook uses a complex algorithm called EdgeRank to determine which posts will be seen by the most users based on the engagement each type typically receives. Research has shown that visual posts get the most likes, comments, and share over all.

  • Average Likes for Photos: 26
  • Average Likes for a Status: 18
  • Average Likes for Videos: 13
  • Average Likes for Links: 6

Users also seem to react differently to positive and negative subject matter.(1)

Positive posts get more “Likes” & negative posts get more comments. (2)

  • Best statuses and image captions are less than 80 characters. (3)
  • Want comments? Ask a question or fill-in-the-blank (92% increase). (3)
  • Caption this photo posts get 5.5x more comments. (3)
  • Calls to action get 45% higher interaction. (3)

When to Post It
While experts agree that the best days to post vary by industry, there are definitely some overall trends. Such as posting between 8pm and 7am get a 14% higher interaction rate. (3) What makes the best days and times to post?

The sweet spot will be the time when many of your followers are active, but there isn’t so much content being posted that you get lost in the shuffle.

Wednesday is the worst day for posting, while Saturday and Sunday are the best.

Posting 2-3 times a day keeps your fans engaged without hogging their news feeds.

An easy way to manage your content is to find a savvy tool like Pagemodo Posts that will help keep to this suggested posting schedule. The tool provides examples of content, and allows you to schedule your Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn posts in advance. It is a great time-saving tool to help a busy social media marketer reach their marketing goals.

For more specific pieces of Facebook marketing advice, visit our Facebook for Business social media marketing guide.



(1) and Your Brand – An Analysis of Messaging Engagement on Facebook by Business Category Ch1.pdf



Small Business Facebook Trends

Since there are new social platforms joining the world daily, it is hard for small business owners to keep up with which networks are the most important to establish a presence on.

So we went straight to the source.

In a recent survey of over 2,200 small business owners in the United States, you will see that Facebook is the dominant social media profile used across businesses for digital marketing.


According to the survey (conducted by Vistaprint):

  • 63% of small businesses use digital products as part of their marketing strategy.
  • 59% of site owners created their websites with DIY tools.
  • 80% of site owners are their own webmasters.
  • 88% of businesses with social profiles use Facebook for their marketing, followed in order by LinkedIn (39%), Twitter (31%), Google+ (22%), Pinterest (20%), and YouTube (17%).

But it is important to always keep one question in mind; ‘where is my audience?’

This question will dictate your decisions of where to join in the digital (and social) marketing trends as technology continues to evolve.

For example, as social media networks become a more pay-to-play market, we saw 65% of small businesses with Facebook profiles answer that they are using or are considering the use of Facebook advertising.

So what will be your next digital and social move? Try visiting Pagemodo to help you make your decision.

*Pagemodo is a part of the Webs marketing platform, which is a subsidiary of Vistaprint.

Posting Tips for Facebook and More

Everyone knows that social media is an important part of any marketing plan. And the more profiles you have, the more you stand to gain.

But before you run out and make profiles on every single platform, remember: quality over quantity. You should only have profiles on as many sites as you can run well. That’s why this presentation will focus on four of the most visible.

Why Post Social Content?
There are three main goals marketers aim to achieve by posting and sharing content.

  1. To gain exposure for a brand through social discovery and amplification
  2. To bolster a brand’s rank in search engines through backlinks
  3. To engage, delight, and build loyalty with fans and followers


5 Top Posting Tips


  • Want to drive engagement? Contests get people talking.
  • Make your posts visual to get more likes, comments, and shares.
  • Post positively. Positive messages/emotions get more likes.
  • Post 2-3 times a day. Check out your insights to find the best times.
  • Get comments by posting questions and fill-in-the-blank updates.

Source: Pagemodo, Mashable


  • Pinterest is about the lifestyles of users. Do not self-promote.
  • Post visual representations of your business, products, and brad.
  • Share things that would be helpful to your followers.
  • Go red! Images with red get up to twice as many re-pins.
  • Post anytime outside of 5pm to 7pm. Avoid dinnertime.

Source: MyCleverAgency


  • Win friends so you can influence people – network!
  • Join or create groups that are relevant to your brand.
  • Post engaging updates about 20 times per month on your page.
  • Know the LinkedIn audience. They tend to be tech-savvy and entrepreneurial.
  • Keep it short and to the point.

Source: LinkedIn


  • Include links, images, and videos to drive re-tweets.
  • Keep it short. 140 characters is a limit – not a goal.
  • Tweet 3-5 times a day to avoid getting drowned out.
  • Network with other users through replies and re-tweets.
  • Monitor trends and participate whenever you can. Just make sure it makes sense for your brand!

Source: Twitter

While there isn’t just one end-all-be-all answer for what will work for your own social media marketing strategy, these are great tips to help you get started.

So for the more advanced marketer – you can expand to more social networks, A/B test your social posts, and calculate your social ROI to make more thoughtful, powerful and strategic decisions.

10 Facebook Timeline Tips for Small Business

As a small business, you know it’s important to have a Facebook presence. Millions of people like brands on Facebook, and being a small business gives you more personal connections and likability.

You want to make sure your timeline is the best it can be to maximize Facebook’s benefit for you. Here are ten ways you can do that.

1. Pick a Good Profile and Cover Photo

These photos are going to be your first impression. Your profile photo can be a company logo or mascot, but your cover can be more creative. You can use a team photo, product display or design something specific for this purpose.

2. Use a Cover Call-to-Action

You have the option to put a button in the lower right corner of your cover. The button can link to a webpage of your choosing. Button options include:

  • Book Now
  • Contact Us
  • Use App
  • Play Game
  • Shop Now
  • Sign Up
  • Watch Video

You can also include the URL of the mobile version of the webpage, if applicable.

3. Pay Attention to Image Sizes

You want your images to look good, so pay attention to sizes. Here are the sizes of commonly used images:

  • Profile: 180×180 pixels
  • Cover: 851 px wide and 351 px tall
  • Shared images: 1200×1200 px

4. Use Apps

There are plenty of apps you can connect your Facebook page with, and these apps can appear at the top with tabs and also have their own section in the column on the left.

One app that’s good to include is the option to sign up to your email newsletter. Most email marketing service providers will have an app you can use to connect the two.

5. Add Milestones

Milestone posts have a very prominent display with a photo, headline, date, location and other details. Business milestones can be a new product launch, achievements or special events.

6. Highlight Posts

One way you can bring attention to important content is by highlighting a post. To do this, simply click on the edit icon in the upper right corner of your post and click the “Highlight” option. This will add a star mark in the upper right corner.

7. Pin Posts

Pinning is another way to draw attention to a particular post. When you pin a post, it appears at the top of your timeline. You can only pin one post at a time, and that post will remain pinned for seven days, or until you unpin it. To pin, click on the edit icon in the upper right corner and select “Pin to Top.” And orange tag in the upper right corner will note a pinned post.

Because a pinned post is at the top, it’s good to post something that will benefit first-time visitors.

8. Set Your Featured Tabs

You can have three tabs listed on your main page, the rest will be kept under the “More” option.

9. Respond to Comments Quickly

Whenever people comment on your posts or photos, be sure to reply promptly. This is especially true if it’s a question or complaint, but even complimentary posts deserve a “thank you.”

10. Add Videos

Videos are rising in popularity, with Facebook users posting 75% more videos than they were a year ago. Creating brief but entertaining videos will allow you to connect with users on the medium they enjoy.

Need help managing your Facebook page and other social medial profiles? Our social media marketing suite can help you get on the right track.