Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Social Media Tools to Help Manage Your Online Life, Part Two by Nicole Miller

Last week, author and social marketing specialist Nicole Miller provided tools to help us organize our social media posts. You'll find Part One here. Today, she continues her recommendations to help make our marketing lives easier with tools for creating images. -- Sandy

Image Creation Tools

Pablo - ( 
Images get much more attention than plain ol' text posts. There are now dozens of powerful image creation tools to assist with creating attention-grabbing pictures (and also while being mindful of copyright.) 

Pablo was created by Buffer and is free to use — you can enter in whatever text you’d like and download or share the image instantly. All the images are copyright free and stunning. Definitely check this one out! 

How I use this tool:
With how quickly you can create a stunning image in Pablo, I used this while I was live-tweeting at a writer’s conference and included quotes from the speaker. The Pablo images got dozens more interactions than the text-only posts. This is a great way to spice up your blog posts, highlight cool passages from your novel or promote events with!

Canva - (
Canva is user-friendly and has an array of helpful templates that will turn any non-designer into a pro in seconds. Social media networks all have different sizes where images “fit” a bit better into the social streams. Canva has these all measured out and offers incredibly designed ideas for you to use. 

Most of the elements in Canva are free, but some images are $1 a piece, but you’re able to use them worry-free in knowing that you have the copyright a-okay. :) 

How I use this tool:
For more complex images, I turn to Canva. There are so many options and you can even collaborate with people on an item. 

Other tools to mention if you want to explore more! 

PicMonkey (

Bonus: Copyright-free images resource here! (

There are so many more amazing tools I use on a daily basis that I haven’t touched on (Evernote, IFTTT, etc.), and new tools pop up every day! It’s a truly wonderful time do be doing what we do. We’re all connected to potential readers just a click away and there are many more resources for all of these awesome tools. 

If you do happen to get stuck, turn to Google for help! (Or, another idea: Ask your audience and friends what they use!) Test tools out for a week or two and if you’re finding it doesn’t jive with your workflow, give something else a go. 

The best tools suit your needs and your personality best. What works best for me might not be the best for you, but that’s the beauty of having so many options online. 

Do you use images in your posts? Do you ever create memes?


Nicole M Miller is a team member at Buffer, a social media management tool with 2 million users, and a historical fiction writer. A journalism major from Western Washington University, she has worked as an event coordinator, designer, marketer and everything in between. She blogs about her urban homesteading adventures with two dogs, two horses, 17 chickens and four ducks at