Size AND Shape Matters: Guidelines for Social Media Visuals

Businesses trying to market themselves on social media need to understand how to use social media visuals in the right way. Images and videos are the most potent form of online outreach today, and many text-heavy sites started capitalizing on it long ago. And as online visual formats evolve and mature, new business uses are being discovered all the time. To make your visuals as impactful as possible, you need to know how to optimize social media visuals for favorite social channels.

Take a look at our guide on how media brands are maximizing their Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn visuals.

Optimizing Video for Different Social Channels

Video marketing is vital for every favorite social media channel, regardless of what products or services you’re selling. When you share your brand videos across different platforms, you’re providing reminders on why your business is the one people need.

The key to the right video strategy is understanding the user base of each social media channel. That way, you’ll understand why something works well on one channel but doesn’t on another.

  • Facebook. About 85% of Facebook videos play muted. This means that users miss any dialogue or voiceover narration. So, you should integrate graphs, charts, text, titles, and other visual storytelling tools into your videos. That’s how you can communicate your message without forcing users to turn the sound on. Also, videos uploaded directly to Facebook have 477% higher share rates and 109% higher interaction rates.
  • Instagram. Businesses on Instagram can use videos to spark conversations between users and groups. According to recent data, 97% of branded campaigns on Instagram have significantly upped their ad recall. Use videos as a start of marketing engagement – pose questions, respond to comments, and develop rapport. Use explainer or animation videos, be selective with hashtags (pick three to five relevant ones), and ask viewers to give their opinions on the content. Also, don’t forget vertical videos for Instagram Live and Instagram Stories.
  • Twitter. When it comes to Twitter, the optimal video length is about 45 seconds. Everything happens fast on Twitter, so it makes sense. Users are seeking quick information; so, choose topics that can be covered in short videos. Condense the information to make it memorable and digestible and to make a powerful statement. Choose native video and be sure to add your brand logo.
  • LinkedIn. About 50% of all college-educated adults (most of them older than 30) are present on LinkedIn. This demographic is ideal for B2B and high-end brand marketers. Optimize your videos to showcase your thought leadership. Grant insider access to conferences and share videos that comment on current market trends. Casual and fun content may work on other channels but looks out of place on LinkedIn.
  • YouTube. The world’s largest video platform and the second-largest search engine, YouTube has almost two billion monthly users. Go beyond advertising and use it to conduct Q&A sessions, upload tutorials, and demonstrations, how-to videos, testimonials, etc. YouTube is an excellent place to resolve customer pain points with your videos.

Optimizing Social Media Visuals for Different Channels

When it comes to images, we already understand their importance for every social media marketing strategy. Here, we’ll share the image types and sizes most suitable for different social channels.

There are three types of social media visuals you can share – square, vertical, and rectangular.

Square Images

Square images are compatible with all devices (whether they are in a horizontal or vertical position). On Instagram, the square format is the default image format, so leveraging square images is critical for building your presence there.

Vertical Images

The first social channel to popularize vertical content was Pinterest. The format continued to grow because we naturally keep our phones in a vertical position. Eventually, other platforms introduced it as well, and it now claims its spot across various platforms. Many businesses are using vertical images for Stories, so if you’re about to delve into it, you need to know how to optimize them.

  • Facebook Stories, Instagram Stories, and IGTV – 1080 x 1920 px
  • Pinterest – 600 x 900 px (or a 2:3 aspect ratio)

Use these dimensions to create the most compelling Stories visuals for popular social channels. Also, remember that you can invest in Stories ads as well.


Horizontal Images

The most traditional image format is the horizontal format. Before the rise of the smartphone, people used to shoot pictures and videos horizontally, with 4:3 and 16:9 aspect ratios. The popularity of horizontal videos has decreased, but there are many places on social media where it’s still a must. Take a look at our cheat sheet to optimize visuals for favorite social channels.

  • Facebook cover photo size – 820 x 311 px
  • Facebook link post image size – 1200 x 628 px
  • Twitter header size – 1500 x 500 px (this isn’t written in stone because Twitter is responsive and will scale your banner to fit all screens)
  • LinkedIn banner image – 1400 x 425 px
  • LinkedIn cover image: 1584 x 396 px
  • LinkedIn company cover image: 1400 x 425 px
  • LinkedIn company page banner image: 1128 x 191 px
  • YouTube channel cover image: 2560 x 1440 px

The role social media plays in today’s digital marketing is vital. To maximize your social media marketing efforts, target specific audiences, and drive engagement – make sure to optimize your pics and videos for the channel! Visual content is easy to digest and is more popular than text, but it must be optimized for best performance on different social channels.


People using Social media management platformEvery business should amplify their social media marketing efforts with the best possible social media management platform. With a unified dashboard and many features that can help with all marketing-related actions, eclincher will save you both time and money. Publish and schedule your posts – especially images and videos – and track live social feeds for engagement.

Use the social media library to manage and store your media and other creative work on dedicated cloud storage. You can access your images and videos to share it as inbox response or with your social media posts. eclincher also comes with built-in visual marketing tools that make designing and editing your social media visuals fun and easy.

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