Creating a Facebook Cover Image Using PowerPoint

Your Facebook cover image, both on your personal profile and on your “fan page”, is a great opportunity for visual content marketing.  In the video below, I show you how I changed my personal cover image with a fun, customized image for Easter, Passover, and Spring.

Facebook makes it so easy for you to upload a great image that gets viewers’ attention and Facebook will even send an automatic status update for you every time you change your cover image.

Warning:  Because of this automatic status update, you might want to avoid uploading multiple versions of a timeline cover, one right after the other.  Otherwise your friends and fans may wonder why they’re getting so many messages about your new cover image!  It’s best to carefully review your new image before you click the Save button in your timeline.  If you back out of the upload, no status message is sent.

There are a variety of do-it-yourself ways to create Facebook covers for timeline other than the common method of uploading panoramic photos.  One of those methods is to use a PowerPoint template.

You can change the size of the slide layout yourself, but it is much easier to use a pre-sized template.  There are a number of them available on the internet.  The one I used was downloaded free from Hubspot at:   http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/facebook-cover-photos-best-practices-ht

Once you have your PowerPoint file sized appropriately, then you have a lot of different options for adding graphic elements:

  • Use the Format Background function to fill in the slide background with a solid color, a gradient, a texture, or even a photo or illustration
  • Insert Pictures, either from file or from the web.  Just be aware of licensing issues.  Even though a Facebook cover image is technically not commercial, you still should use royalty-free images and/or give credit for images where that is required as part of the image license.
  • The Easter egg images I used came from PresenterMedia.com, a wonderful and inexpensive source for templates (many with animation), clip art images, and video clips.  Many of their materials can be customized before you download them, as I did with the eggs!  Check them out and, if you’d like to join, please use my affiliate link:  http://www.presentermedia.com/CXAUEALJPE
  • Insert Textboxes for headlines and other text you might want to include.  As you probably know, Facebook has removed their previous restriction about how much text you can use on a timeline cover, but I don’t recommend going overboard with text.  After all, the point here is to share eye-catching visual content.
  • When choosing font styles and colors, remember to make your message easy for viewers to read!  PowerPoint offers a wide variety of fonts, plus there are many more available on the internet, but many fonts are difficult to read for more than a few simple words!
  • Insert Shapes, such as boxes, circles, arrows, stars, and many more built into PowerPoint.  (Note:  Facebook no longer objects if you use an arrow to direct viewers to the Like button on your page!)
  • Insert Smart Art  diagrams that can have inserted text, customized color fills, and much more.

When you’re finished designing your unique slide layout, just go to the File menu in PowerPoint and “Save As”.  Then click on the folder (or the desktop) where you want to save the cover image file on your computer.  Once the “Save As” dialog box appears, you need to do the following critical steps:

  1. Click the drop-down arrow next to “Save as Type” and select JPEG File Interchange Format (*.jpg)
  2. Name your cover image file – preferably something to identify clearly it in the future.
  3. Click the Save button.
  4. You’ll see a prompt asking which slides you want to export:  All slides OR Just this one

Now you’re ready to go to your Facebook timeline, click the Change Cover button, and upload your .jpg file.

PowerPoint is a pretty powerful graphics editor.  Of course it doesn’t compare to Photoshop, but then neither does its price tag!  If you already have PowerPoint on your computer, why not try your hand at designing a unique Facebook cover image?  Once you do, share a link to your page on my Facebook page:  https://www.Facebook.com/PowerPointQueenRules

I look forward to seeing what you create!  And I’d love to hear your comments and questions about this blog post and about the video – thanks!




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