Marketing for a bank (or any industry, really) is already a hectic job. Building campaigns, creating content, coming up with creative ideas and graphics, finding that “perfect” image for your next social media post… seems like it never ends. So why not make your life easier with these resources and tools to help you be a better bank marketer. Below you’ll find loads of tools and resources categorized by functionality and use (and many of which we use here at WSI). Let’s break it down, even more, to make your life even easier…
Yes, FREE is what you just read. All of these resources offer FREE stock images for you to use on your website, social media, blogs, etc. Therefore, you can no longer use the excuse “I don’t have time to take nice pictures” or “I don’t want to spend money on buying professional photos”. Here is the perfect resource for YOU! We do suggest, however, that you always double-check the license information anytime you’re using images, video, audio, etc. off the web, as terms change over time and it’s better to be safe than sorry!
Image & Video Creation
Creating nice-looking images and/or videos can take a lot of time, cause a good deal of stress, and oftentimes requires a commitment to digging in and learning a complicated program. The good news is we have some recommendations to make this process easy and stress-free. First, we suggest trying an online “version” of photoshop, called Photopea, which allows you to create images, size them, remove their backgrounds, etc. It’s not an Adobe product, but it looks pretty darn close! On the other hand, another web-based solution we strongly suggest is Canva. Canva is one of the top-rated graphic design platforms available for “non-designers” and like Photopea, runs completely from your browser.
As far as video creation is concerned, we have a few online video solutions that we recommend based on ease of use, content creation capabilities, audio solutions, and more.
Image & Video Editing
Editing images and videos do not have to be frustrating and a long, drawn-out process. One of the most time-consuming tasks for photo editors is removing backgrounds for images, videos, and GIFS, and/or resize, convert, and move around visual elements. Doing this enables you to drop in other backgrounds, colors, and design elements to really make the image stand out and meet your creative needs. Here are a few we recommend you check out.
Video is HUGE these days… and if you can go live to interact and actually involve your audience in the conversation - that’s even better. While most every social networking platform allows for you to go live natively, what if you’d like to really get your message out there and be seen across multiple channels at the same time? You’re looking for a live streaming service and the ones below are a great starting point. Not only will you be able to push your event live to sites like Facebook, Twitter/Periscope, YouTube, Twitch, and even LinkedIn Live (if you have access), you can save your live content and edit it and post it again later
Video & Music Resources
Music adds extra “spice” to your videos and online content, so why not use it? Because it costs money? Because you can’t find any “good” audio tracks? Here are a few options that offer free music, music for as cheap as $1, sound effects, and other ways to get the audio files you want (such as YouTube to MP3/4 conversions). Remember, check the license terms to be sure that you’re not violating copyright restrictions!
Oh, and an AWESOME teleprompter resource called BigVu allows you to put your words on a screen (like your iPad) while you’re talking. Just like the teleprompters, you see all the late-night talk show hosts using to keep them on track, you no longer have to worry about speaking on the fly and can be totally prepared for that video!
Research shows if you include a hashtag in a Tweet that can boost your engagement and visibility by over 1000%! Even the business-focused platform, LikedIn, has embraced the power of hashtags on its platform. Who knew hashtags were so important? Well, they are and as you start to use more of them, it may be time for you to use a hashtag management tool to help keep you organized. Tools and resources like these will help improve your Instagram profile (IQHashTags), provide you will an all-in-one hashtag tool (HashTastic), help find and manage Instagram hashtags (Flick), and lastly, build hashtag lists and analyze your Instagram account for you (DisplayPurposes). Even if you do not actively use hashtags, it is worth your while to check out these tools to help you get started, and help you get found online!
Logos & Illustrations
Have you ever wondered where logos come from and who makes them? Sure, you can hire a graphics designer - but that may cost you thousands of dollars by the time you’re done. Granted, in some cases that’s the best route to go, but one tool we like to use for logos is called Looka. Also, when you create a logo, you’re usually creating some sort of a “brand”, right? Therefore, you’ll likely also need some sort of an attractive color palate. Yup, there’s a tool for generating color schemes called Coolors.
Usually, when you create a logo and a brand, you start to advertise your brand or share it online. With that being said, you might need to illustrate ads, fun images, etc. to share online. You can do so using the following illustrator tools:
Social Link Validators
And finally, now that your creative work is done and it’s time to share it with the rest of the world, your content is likely going to be shared via social networking. When your content is on your bank’s website and you’re ready to start sharing, check out the link validators below for the three main social powerhouses. This will give you a preview of what your post will look like on their platform, and if there are any “issues” that you should fix before you click that post button. Did the right image appear, what about the preview text? If you’ve ever shared something and it looks different than what you expected, this will get you headed in the right direction.
Keep in mind that it may require a bit of HTML wizardry by your web team to get the right tags and labels in the right spot, but once you have those in place when you (or maybe even a customer) shares your content, it’s going to look super cool and show off all your hard work!
What are YOU Using?
There’s a lot here, we know. But if you are using any cool tools at your bank and would like them added to the list let us know! We’re always on the hunt for “cool stuff” to help make sure that your bank's website is amazing. We'd love to hear from you.
For a quick guide to all of the resources and tools links, download the PDF below.