Catching your eye: visual communications online - Thing 6

We all know that an interesting visual is now essential in the quest to grab attention on busy social media feeds. Things 3-5 proved full of practical advice on communicating visually online.

For Thing 3 Image Banks, I posted a couple of images from Pixabay on my blog. Pixabay is a fantastic site, I use it almost everyday at work to source images for social media posts. It is remarkable that all images are free to use, even commercially, as they are licenced under Creative Commons.

I thoroughly enjoyed Thing 4: Communicating Visually. I chose to download PhotoFunia, an app to help you create fun and interesting visuals. It's very user friendly and I'm using it regularly to illustrate posts on facebook and twitter now - such as the above image which I used to illustrate a post on twitter this week.. So thanks to the Rudaí23 team for introducing me to it!

For Thing 5: Video Presentations I decided to take a look at PowToon and I created a short presentation. The aim of which was to introduce general library patrons to a number of our core  eResources available for free with their library membership. Here's how I got on....

I felt very comfortable completing Things 3 and 4. I use image banks such as Pixabay and Unsplash very regularly in work and have been using flickr and Creative Commons for over ten years. Thing 5 was a lot more challenging and sometimes frustrating experience.  I had never used PowToon and although I have a lot of experience using PowerPoint and ProShow Gold, a video presentation application, and a little with Prezi, I found the learning curve steeper than expected. My previous experience didn't give me as much of an advantage as I expected.

Of all the Things, I found 5 to be the most time consuming and I wasn't fully satisfied with the result. I feel the outcome may have been more satisfactory if I had a strong script or more time to get under the skin of PowToon. However, I will keep it in mind as I can think of plenty of applications, particularly in promoting elements of service online and can therefore see myself using it again. Next time I think I will try to design a presentation from scratch rather than use the templates, as I found it frustrating how many elements were only available to Pro users. I would definitely take the time to do PowToon's training webinar too and spend more time looking at other examples.

I am always on the lookout for tools to make information more visually appealing and interesting. Now that PowToon is on my radar I feel sure I will use it both to communicate with library patrons and my colleagues. I can think of some presentations I previously created using PowerPoint, knowing there was a more dynamic solutions out there. But I will admit I need to engage more with PowToon and gain more familiarity before using this application comes naturally.


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