Graphic designer at work. Color swatch samples.

Don’t let anyone fool you, a marketer in 2017 is three parts marketer, one part visual designer. Marketers without a designer must know how to put together compelling visuals quickly, easily, and at low cost. Lucky for all of us, there is no shortage of visual content creation tools out there today, but the sheer amount of them can be seriously overwhelming. Not to worry though! Here are my favorite fail-proof tools to make any marketer a master at visuals:

  1. AutoDraw (FREE) AutoDraw, Google’s new how-did-they-do-it brainchild, uses machine learning to understand what you are trying to draw and then replaces it with a professionally drawn version of your masterpiece. Draw, design, and export, all for free.
  2. Canva (FREE) Canva allows you to create basic ads, social posts, postcards and more for free. Their vast library of templates allows you to make just about anything from the comfort of your desk.
  3. Pablo (FREE) Pablo focuses on helping you make social ads and posts easier than ever. Although their offerings are minimal, they do offer some really helpful tools when it comes to sizing and formatting your images for specific social channels that really take the guess-work out of creating social ads and posts.
  4. Venngage (FREE basic access, $468/year for all the features) Choose from hundreds of pre-designed templates to create custom infographics quickly and easily with Venngage. Browse infographic, poster, social templates and more through the link to see if Venngage is right for you.
  5. Piktochart (FREE) Much like Venngage, Piktochart allows you to use beautifully designed templates to help get your message across. The free version gets you most everything you need to create your next social ad or infographic but you can also upgrade to the pro package for print quality downloads and exportable presentations.
  6. Death to the Stock Photo (FREE monthly photos, access to the full archive for $180/year) Death to the Stock Photo is on a mission to rid the world of the typical stock photo and replace each one with gorgeous curated photos by their artist friends for free. Sign up for their email list and you receive a new set of themed photos in your inbox every single month.
  7. Unsplash (FREE) Much like Death to the Stock Photo, Unsplash is here to save us all from unappealing and overused free photos. Unsplash is especially easy to search through and if you sign up for their email list, you get 10 new photos every 10 days for free.
  8. All the Free Stock (FREE) If you prefer to have practically every single available stock photo on the internet available at your fingertips, then All the Free Stock is the place for you. While it can sometimes feel overwhelming, it provides just like its name suggests. Free stock photos, mockups, videos, sound effects and so much more.
  9. A designer ($$$) While this is likely a more expensive option, it is also the most reliable of any list-acle you can find on this topic. A good designer is hands down the best tool a marketer can have.

More on Visual Marketing:

3 Creative Brands to Inspire Your Visual Marketing

Infographic: 20 Visual Marketing Statistics You Need to Know

The New New Thing Podcast: Why Visual Marketing is Key for Brands in 2017

Featured image: Launch Marketing

Clara Doti
| High Alpha
Clara Doti is a Designer in Residence at High Alpha, helping to conceive, launch and scale next-generation enterprise cloud companies. When she’s not designing a marketing R&D platform for digital ads, Clara enjoys sewing her own shirts, eating chorizo tacos from her nearby international grocery store, and listening to sad pop songs as she runs through her Northwest side neighborhood. She often spends time brewing really good coffee, watering her vegetable garden, and avoiding large crowds. She has a hard time remembering to bring an umbrella but she’s great at keeping in touch with her parents.
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