Enthusiastically Self-Employed: business tips, marketing tips, and LinkedIn tips for coaches, consultants, speakers, and authors.

023 How to Use Canva More Efficiently in Your Business with Brenda Cadman

July 31, 2023 Brenda Meller Season 1 Episode 23
Enthusiastically Self-Employed: business tips, marketing tips, and LinkedIn tips for coaches, consultants, speakers, and authors.
023 How to Use Canva More Efficiently in Your Business with Brenda Cadman
Show Notes Transcript

How to Use Canva More Efficiently in Your Business with Brenda Cadman

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Originally Aired Tuesday, May 9, 2023

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023 How to Use Canva More Efficiently in Your Business with Brenda Cadman

Brenda Meller: [00:00:00] Hey, good morning and welcome. It's The Brenda Show today here. on Enthusiastically self-employed cuz you've got me, Brenda Meller. And we have a very special guest with us here today. Brenda Cadman. Hey Brenda, how are you doing today? 

Brenda Cadman: I'm very, very, very well. It's nice to be here, Brenda. That's not gonna be weird at all.

Brenda Meller: Right? It's kinda funny when you interview someone with the same name as yours because it's, it's like, it, it feels kind of funny to say, hi, Brenda. It feels like you're talking to yourself. Hello, Brenda. How are you? I'm good. How am I? You know at any rate, I wanna welcome our audience. I wanna introduce Brenda. Cadman and Brenda and I came connected, became connected through the Digital Course Academy, which is offered through Amy Porterfield amazing program.

And as a part of it, you get to be a part of, of a Facebook community, a Facebook group, and. There's opportunities for you to introduce yourself and to get to know other people in the group, and, and, and she's done some group coaching and things like that, and I don't, I don't remember where our first interaction.

Came about, but I was, when I connected with you, I'm like, oh my God, a Canva [00:01:00] expert. I need, I need that person in my network. And in the pre-show, we were talking about the fact that it's really great to have people in deep, deeper, in knowledge areas and, and ourselves. So I know a little bit about you and your background.

I've attended some of your webinars and workshops already. Brenda, could you take a few minutes and tell us a little bit about who you are, who you help, and what you help them with? 

Brenda Cadman: Absolutely. So my name is Brenda Cadman. I am based in Charlottetown, prince Edward Island in Canada, and I have been an entrepreneur for a little over 23 years now.

It's hard to believe it's been that long. It's been since the days then when domains cost over a hundred dollars a year. It's changed a lot, the landscape, but my business for the most part over the past two decades has been running a website development company. So I've really been involved in. To some extent online marketing as far as websites go for a couple of decades, and I just retired that finally in September.

It was took about two years to make that decision and just decided it was time to do something a little bit different [00:02:00] because I had been pulled into this world of Canva. I should started using Canva in 2014, but I started teaching it in 2019 because it actually was in Digital Course Academy that I had joined that program in 2019 to create a course about websites.

And I quickly realized that people weren't asking questions about websites. They were asking, how did you create your lead magnet in Canva? How are you creating your slides in Canva? So you start answering these questions over and over and creating little trainings and. Folks started asking if that's what my course was going to be about.

That's one of those kind of fork in the road moments. Yeah. Listening to your audience. Yes. It's, and I, 

Brenda Meller: I mean, I call this show Enthusiastically Self-Employed, and we, we, we have a variety of people that are coming on talking, but I think that's an important lesson right up front. Yeah. You know, what you, what you join Digital Course Academy for, to create.

Actually led you into a different path entirely, and it sounded like, mm-hmm. Were, were you then, would you have called yourself a Canva expert, [00:03:00] whether Canva certified you or not, but would you have called yourself a Canva expert at that time? 

Brenda Cadman: I would, in terms of just how I'd been using it, because it was probably my most heavily used.

App or program that I was using. Cause I was using it to create everything. My social media graphics, my lead magnets, my course slides, my webinar presentations, you know, whatever I needed. Need a quick checklist, great, I'm gonna go create it in Canva. And it was just such a part of my daily ecosystem that.

You, you, I think what happens is you forget the learning curve and when you are so immersed in it, you don't realize that you have an expertise in something that other folks really do are still at that beginning of that learning curve for, so when folks started asking a lot of questions that felt. Just like part of my Canva vocabulary, it took a little bit of time to realize, you know, this is something that I have an expertise in.

This is something people want to learn. They're excited to learn. They're excited to talk about far more than learning about website security. [00:04:00] Mm-hmm. Like you said, you need to listen to your audience. And I made a quick decision and it took a little bit longer to actually close the development side of the business, but I was ready at that point last year or two.

Put a hundred percent of my time into this Canva education business. 

Brenda Meller: That's awesome. Well, I, I'm delighted that you chose that path. You know, I know you said there's a fork in the road and you chose to go in the one I'm super excited because I've, I've already learned a lot from you, and I was on your webinar, I think it was about two weeks ago, and, and I watched about half of it, and then I had an appointment and I watched the other half and replay, and you even did like a bonus segment where you answered all the q and a and you sent, I mean, like that was so generous to.

Brenda Cadman: I underestimated the number of questions. Yeah, it took, yeah, full half hour of lightning, lightning round, answering questions, which was wonderful because it means that people really, genuinely are interested in this, and it confirms that I'm on the right path. 

Brenda Meller: Absolutely. And let's 

just, I, I, I always tell people I refer to as, as Canva, as graphic design for Dummies, and I say it's like a web-based software.

Like if there's someone watching the show right now [00:05:00] that has heard of Canva that doesn't really know what Canva is, how do you describe it? What is Canva? 

Brenda Cadman: I mean, it is an online graphic design tool. It's, it can be used. It was originally started for the most part to be able to easily create social media graphics, but it has expanded dramatically since then.

You can create basically any sort of online, not just any sort of online marketing material that you need, but a lot of the. Even printable pieces you can create in Canva as well. Now, to some extent Anyways, so I describe it as an, it's an online graphic design tool that will let you create all of the marketing assets you need to support your business.

Particularly if you're an online business, 

Brenda Meller: and you may raise a good point too. It started with social media. Now you can do just about anything. Mm-hmm. I mean, I, I don't know if everyone see this, but in, if you're watching this on video, you'll see underneath my name it says Intro outro, created in Canva.

So the intro video that I play at the beginning of this interview, and then at the end I'll have an outro video. I created that in Canva. And there's so many things that like once you get into [00:06:00] Canva, there's little. Tips and nuggets and stuff. So on that note, we are here today to talk about how to use Canva more efficiently in your business.

So Brenda, what tips do you have for us? 

Brenda Cadman: This is where you'll need to reign me in cause I'll probably go off for ages. Otherwise, there are, I think, some fundamental foundational kinds of, Components within Canva that are really important if you are using Canva inside of your business. And the two key ones that I spend probably most of the time educating around are the brand kit and the projects area.

So the folders specifically in projects. Okay. Because you don't, do you have to use the brand kit? Do you have to use folders? No, you don't. But if you want to use this, As a tool in the most efficient way possible to support your business without going down that Canva rabbit hole where you are spending, you know, hours trying to create things.

And it's really easy to do and it's really fun to do, but you know, you've got a lot of other things in your business that you need to be doing. If you want to [00:07:00] do, if you wanna create this content quickly so you can move on to the more important stuff, you do need to really be setting up that brand kit feature so that you have all of your brand assets, your colors, your logos, your fonts, your other brand graphics and elements that you use.

You want those at your fingertips. And the fastest way to do that is to take advantage of that brand. It used to be the brand kit, now it's the brand hub. Mm-hmm. That feature is going to be a, a game changer in terms of making things more efficient and also ensuring that you're able to create content in Canva that is consistently on brand, because it's very easy otherwise to slip into using imagery that just isn't consistent with your branding or colors or fonts that are not part of your established visual brand kit.

And if you set up this brand kit and you stick with it, it's going to make sure that you can, not only are you saying on brand, but you're gonna be able to create those on brand graphics far more quickly as well. 

Brenda Meller: That's, can I ask a question about the brand kit? Absolutely. So is I, I have the premium version of Canva.

For Years Pro I had the free basic, ver, or [00:08:00] the Pro version. Thank you. I. I'm thinking LinkedIn Premium and Canva. So it's the pro version. So I did upgrade and it's not that expensive to do, but I, I started doing it cuz I was managing multiple clients and I needed to have their brand assets and materials.

So is the brand kit something that we get with the free version or do we have to have pro? 

Brenda Cadman: You do have to have pro. They were very smart in their assignment of that, in the pro plan because it's really only relevant for the most part. If you are an organization or a business. So you do need to have Canva Pro in order to take advantage of the brand kit feature, but it is well worth it in terms of the, you know, it, it eases the, the friction that you might be feeling.

Otherwise, it's gonna be faster to use it. You are going to It's just gonna be a better experience and you're gonna get a lot of value out of it. And like you said, it's not expensive. I'm not sure what it is in US dollars. I think it's about $13 a month or the monthly ends up being less if you go annually.

So this is one of the least expensive business expenses you're going to have. But if you are using Canva for business, [00:09:00] it, it is gonna be important to upgrade, to take advantage of that feature. 

Brenda Meller: I don't know what it is. I pay it annually because of the same thing. I kind of looked at the cost. I'm like, oh, it's that that much.

I pay it once a year and it comes through on my 

Brenda Cadman: credit card like 109 a year or something like that. 

Brenda Meller: Yeah, yeah. All right, awesome. So we need the brand kit and it and that. And I agree with you. I mean, it does help you save the time, so you're not using the wrong fonts and you've got your color palette. Is it palette?

Palette? I always mispronounce that word. 

Brenda Cadman: I've always said palette. So palette. Who knows if that's accurate. 

Brenda Meller: I say that. Well, I dunno if the other people do that too. I like, I say the word and I'm like, did I say that right? Palette. 

Brenda Cadman: Then you just have to double down and go with it.

Brenda Meller: Then I think, is it like a palette, like a wooden palette?

Is that palette? I don't know. Is that the same at any rate? So we've got one tip off the bat, which is getting set up with our brand kit. Yeah. What, what other tips do you have for us? 

Brenda Cadman: Well, The area that I primarily specialize in what I didn't mention in that two decades of experience is I ran a, a professional [00:10:00] organizing business for a period of time as well, and my specialty was filing systems, creating, filing systems, and controlling paper, especially in an office environment or a home office environment.

So, Those, those skills have always been a part of me. And now when you marry that with Canva, my specialty is teaching how to stay organized specifically in Canva using the folders that Canva includes in their projects area. A lot of business owners, they have either not created folders or they have, and they're finding that it's hard to stick with it, which means they haven't got the right system.

So I basically. That's where a lot of my education is, is how do we set up these folder systems? How do you clean up the mess that you already have? Mm-hmm. If you're brand new to Canva, it's the perfect time to set up a system because you don't have the, have this backlog that you need to put some sort of order to.

But if you have been using it for some time, if you're a power user, a veteran user of Canva, you probably already have, you know, a thousand designs and images [00:11:00] that need some sort of organization. And it can be very soul crushing to look at it like, how am I going to do this? Which is why a lot of people haven't gotten around to it.

Yeah. It just feels so overwhelming. So I that's why that, you know, you attended that webinar a couple weeks ago and we talk a bit about, I. How do we approach this? If you are feeling like you've got this kind of organizational pit of despair that you want to create some sort of organization around, and you start by creating folders, custom folders, if you haven't done that before, and that one's available on both free and pro.

There's a couple of minor differences, but for most people, they'll never run into any of the, the limitations that come with that. 

Brenda Meller: That's a good point and I appreciate you telling, cuz there's probably some people that are watching this that maybe aren't on Canva yet, and they're thinking about sitting it up and they're like, what do I get with the free versus the pro version?

Yeah. But I, I love your point of if you're just getting started, start. With organization because I, I don't know how many projects I've got in Canva Brenda, but I've got like, probably thousands and they're, [00:12:00] some are in folders When I was working with clients a little bit more, but now they're, there's just like, it's a mess.

It's really, and it, and it takes a little bit of time to search for things and that's time away from what I need to do for my business. That's not productive time. Right. 

Brenda Cadman: Yep, agreed. And I think if you're just starting using, you may not realize, you may not know yet what kinds of folders you need. So create them as you go.

If you know that you're creating it initially for Instagram posts, create a social media folder and inside of that, create an Instagram folder and then store it all there. And as your use of Canva. Dictates more folders. You're gonna start to realize the kinds of categories of content that you're creating and you'll start to, you'll just by understanding the inventory of what you have and there some sort of organizational structure will start to appear if you find that.

You are struggling to remember to use that. It may mean that the folders you've chosen are not the right one for you. So I would really encourage you though, to stick with it. It's just a [00:13:00] matter of finding what system is gonna work for you and there's no one size fits all solution. The way my brain works in terms of organizing content is not how.

Somebody else's brain is going to work. And particularly if you're the only person that is looking for content in your Canva account, you, you can create an organizational system that works uniquely for how you like to retrieve. You know, retrieve your designs and images. If you have a team, it's a little bit different because you do need to make sure that you are creating a system that will work for them as well.

Yeah. But it's gonna be even more important to have an organizational system because they're not going to know what you named that file, and you need to be able to have a system to house it so that you're not the bottleneck when they're trying to get work done. 

Brenda Meller: So you just made me think of a question.

I'm like, maybe this is only for me, but there might be others if you're sharing projects with other individuals in Canva and mm-hmm. And you can kind of collaborate. It's kinda like Google Docs where you can all go in and collaborate on things. So if I create a folder in my version of Canva, they would still have access, my team members would have access to that folder.

Is that right? 

Brenda Cadman: You would need to deliberately share the [00:14:00] folder, but if you just hover over it, basically you'd go into your Canva projects, you'll hover over that folder, you'll see three little dots, and when you click on that, you'll see an option to share, and then you just can share it to your team.

You do need to share a folder though. Often the question I get asked is, do I need to share every single design? Individually, right? No, you don't. You can do it at the folder level, but you do have to take that step or they're not going to see what you've shared with them. Mm-hmm. There are some limitations.

You can't share your uploads folder, for example, that is just for your personal use. But what you would do in that case is if you have images that you want them to have access to, you're just gonna create a folder for those images and you're gonna share that folder. And it really is a better practice to be creating a custom.

Folder system for your images. I don't like seeing people put all of their content store all of their images in uploads, and I don't know if you, I mean, you watched the rest of it in the replay. You know that I do. That. I, I emphasized that in the training you did a couple of weeks ago. Yeah. [00:15:00] You should not be using your uploads folder to house all of your images because it just, There's no way to organize that.

Yeah. And you can very quickly accumulate hundreds. And in some cases, I've seen accounts with thousands of images in there. Mm-hmm. And good luck finding that one stock image that you uploaded three months ago that you wanna go find again. And you're gonna end up re-uploading the same images over and over because you don't have a system to organize them.

So use 

Brenda Meller: you. You just like gave, I mean, I and I, I, I don't think I listened to the full, I think I listened to part in the beginning live and then part in the playback, but I gotta go back and listen because I. I missed that point of creating a, a folder to put all of your uploads in and what I loved about that point and this is the concern I have, and, and for those of you that are listening or watching, if you have multiple people working on a project, I, that was one of my concerns.

If I upload something, my interns don't have access to the photo. But you're saying if I put them in a folder and I shared the folder with them, they would, yes. So that would cut down on some time right there. That's a huge tip. [00:16:00] 

Brenda Cadman: Well, and upload it directly into the folder as well. You don't have to upload images into your uploads folder first.

If you just o go into projects, open up that custom folder, maybe it's called Styled stock photos. Yep. And then drag the images from your computer directly into that folder. They'll upload directly there, so you're skipping a step of having to move everything over as well. And that's gonna be a lot more efficient for staying on top of.

An organizational system once you've actually created it. Because creating it is one thing, but the best organizational system in the world is gonna fall apart if you don't maintain it. 

Brenda Meller: I love it. Such great tips. I'm already like walking away with some really great, I'm like, I, I'm gonna do this after I get off the call today.

I'm gonna start working on Canva organization. What, what other tips do you have for us? 

Brenda Cadman: I think there are key little features as well that are going to be. Really good game sa, you know, they're gonna be game changers in terms of saving time and, and this one's also a pro feature, is the resize option, which you're probably familiar with as well.

Brenda? Yep. It is the [00:17:00] main reason that I upgraded to the pro version back in 2015 when Canva for Work came out for the very first time. Before that, they didn't have a paid subscription, and it was that resize feature because if you are creating something, let's say you create a really great looking Instagram graphic, and now you want to take that same image and you want to create a pin out of it, or you wanna create a LinkedIn post out of it, or you wanna create a Facebook page cover out of it.

You don't wanna have to start from scratch creating brand new dimensions and, and copying and pasting all of that over. You can just quickly go to that resize feature, tell it the dimensions that you want it to be. You can search for the, the particular image type that you want. I don't have to say, you know, take this square image and turn it into an image that's 1,280 pixels by 600 pixels.

I could just search for the kind of graphic that I wanna turn it into, and then it's automatically going to. Resize all of the, the components to fit into that new [00:18:00] dimensions. You're gonna have to do a little bit of tidy up, especially if you're going from something like really, let's say you're going from something tall and skinny to wide and landscape.

You're going to have to move things around to get it looking. You know, good. Yeah. But all the components are there and some of the elements will already be resized, but you're not starting from scratch, having to carry everything over, that's gonna save a lot of time. Particularly if you want to, you know, version something out into a variety of different social media graphics and get them in their really precise, desired ideal dimensions because it's very easy.

To create a single square image and then use that everywhere. But to look ideal across different platforms, you are going to want to create your social graphics in the specific dimensions that each platform is asking for. 

Brenda Meller: What, what are your thoughts too, on sizing as you talk about like sizing for social media graphics?

Like I've always told people like, Canva gives you the dimensions, but sometimes I will go to the platform or I may even [00:19:00] do a Google, Google search and say, what are the best sizes nowadays? I mean, we know like Instagram, it's like 10 80 by 10 80 square, but you know, I've heard sometimes LinkedIn is 1200 by.

Seven 20 I think it is. I've heard different dimensions. And then if you look in Canva, it might say slightly different. So how in tune are they, in your opinion, are they Canva with the right sizing of those social media graphics? 

Brenda Cadman: I think they're usually pretty good. We're at a point now where a lot of the platforms accept kind of different orientations.

Some they allow Square and a landscape one, so you might see multiple options coming up. You know Instagram you can still post a square, but obviously the new version is slightly taller. So you're going to find all those different options in there, and I usually will go with what they provide, but I'm going to check it if it looks kind of.

Gross. Mm-hmm. I will, you know, maybe dig in a little bit deeper. Often what I'll end up doing is I'll save a design at twice the size. So that is a pro feature. [00:20:00] When you download an image out of Canva, you'll have an option to download it at half the size, or you know, the standard will be one at. It's actual both size.

Yeah. Dimensions. Mm-hmm. But you can also do one and a half, two, or up to three times. So if I find, for example, that a face, like a Facebook group cover image is just looking kind of grainy, this happens a lot where it's getting compressed. When it's uploaded into an another platform, I will often go back and download that image that I've created at 10 80 by 10 80 or whatever it is, download it twice the size so you've got a much larger high resolution image.

Upload that in, and then you're gonna be able to get something that's more clear and, and looks better. So I'll usually go by the dimensions that Canva provides. I do find they tend to be pretty accurate, but if it's not seeming quite right, you can, you know, do a little bit of Googling or just try the, the trick of downloading a larger version of it.

Brenda Meller: That's awesome I'm already getting some really great jumps. I'm hoping my interns are watching [00:21:00] and they might help, helping me organize my system my folders and putting things in the right places.

And a lot of times you know, Brenda, they are creating a graphic and I will always say, if you're creating a graphic, share it with me. Is there a way to. Transfer ownership of a, of a graphic or a project to another person. I know this is a question that I think that you got asked in the webinar as well.

Brenda Cadman: Yes. At this point there isn't, it is a highly requested feature because there, particularly if somebody's working in a team environment, there is a feature now that when somebody leaves a team, they can choose to reassign ownership of the designs that they've created to, you know, the, to the admin.

But that, Relies on the person willingly doing that. Yeah. And then also if you want to have ownership before somebody's leaving a team, there's no easy way to do that right now. I do think that is an important feature. I hope it's coming. I don't have any intel on whether that's in the roadmap, but I do know that it get a, gets asked a lot [00:22:00] when I have worked with clients.

When I'm cleaning up their accounts and I see that where there's a bunch of designs that are created by one of their team members, I will often say, let's duplicate these. Okay, so that you have a copy and then your copy will become the master instead. That's really the only way to do it, is to duplicate the design so that it's the ownership belongs to you, and then.

Quickly remove the copy so you don't have confusion about which is which. But it does, it's a little bit laborious if you have a lot of designs that you need to do that with. Unfortunately, that's the only way right now. 

Brenda Meller: Absolutely. And it's interesting that you say that cuz that's what I do and I'm like, I feel like that's probably not the most efficient way.

Like maybe there's a backdoor to change ownership, but I'm glad that you're affirming like what I'm doing. But I hear you, you're, you're creating a copy of the graphic. So then there could be some confusion over which project are we using? Are we using my version or, or your version. I wanna change gears and we're already starting to get some questions coming into to chat here, if that's okay with you, Brenda.

Yeah. We'll take some questions from the audience. If you happen to be listening to this in the podcast, I'll give [00:23:00] you some instructions at the end that you can get ahold of Brenda Cadman. And we do have two Brendas, Brenda Meller and Brenda Cadman I call.

Yes, it's a little confusing. But we will go into a couple of these questions and see what we have in here. So I have one from Brian. Hey Brian, an nice to see you today. Sir. Brian is asking what do we do if we're not too creative in design? I have my logo yet. I'm having a terrible time designing a speaker.

One sheet. What would be your thoughts there? 

Brenda Cadman: Brian templates are your best friend. One of the great things is Canvas Template Library has really expanded dramatically since its inception. There used to be not a lot of choice, but now there is a tremendous number of templates inside of Canvas own template library.

So just going in and searching for, you know, a. A one sheet or a media sheet or, or something like that. You might have to get a little bit creative with the keywords if you're not finding quite what you're looking for. But ultimately, if you're not finding the templates that you need inside of Canva Zone template [00:24:00] library, there are so many template shops out there as well, and template memberships and all these various resources where folks have, you know, designers have.

Done the heavy lifting in terms of creating the kinds of templates that you might be looking for specifically in your business so that you can start with something that has been professionally designed where, you know, a designer has thought about contrast and hierarchy and white space and all these design principles that a typical business owner, how would you know that's not your area of expertise?

So I would really strongly recommend starting with a template. Don't feel like you have to design from scratch. Don't feel like, you know, you said you have a, you're having a terrible time designing a one sheet. I don't wanna see you designing a one sheet. I wanna see you de you know, choosing a template that's already been done for you, that has the components in it that makes sense for what you're trying to create.

And then focus on setting up that brand kit so that you can customize the template so that it's on brand. You wanna change the colors, you wanna change the fonts, you want to change the imagery being [00:25:00] used. What you'll find is you quickly can turn something that has, you know, already has the kind of.

Polish of a professionally designed one sheet, but now it feels uniquely designed for your business because you have tweaked it to fit your own visual brand kit. I hope that, does that make sense Brenda? It's, it's 

Brenda Meller: totally does, it it reminds me a little bit of back in the day when PowerPoint first became a thing, and for those of us that are a little bit more experienced, rich, you know what I'm talking about here?

And when we first started using PowerPoints, people were like using those. Animations and all the fun features and stuff. Yep. But when you, when you first create a PowerPoint, there's like a template library inside PowerPoint. So you can create like the blank one and put your own fonts and pictures and things.

Or you can create like one of the, the PowerPoint templates. So it's kind of the same way is my interpretation. Like, but the great thing is the Canva template library. There's a ton, and I love how you said, type in one sheet or type in the word speaker or type in flyer and. And then you can at least get the [00:26:00] look of some things.

You might even find like a resume, like type in resume and you can find some resumes that have like a photo because the speaker one sheet will have a photo included as a part of it. But no, I think that makes perfect sense, starting with the templates. And then I love your advice too about modifying. To fit your brand colors.

Is that, is that, do you always say modify something off of the template or do you ever say, use the template as is? I'm wondering.

Brenda Cadman: Oh, modify. You 

don't wanna use, I mean, I mean, ultimately you can, it kind of depends what it is. If you're just choosing something functional and you just need something quickly to serve a particular purpose, then maybe you'll do less customization of it, because there is a tendency You know, to fall into trying to get something perfect, and I think sometimes good is better than perfect, right?

If it gets you moving. But I do think it's important to modify it because Ev, you gotta remember there's over a hundred million monthly users of Canva, and they all have the same access to that Canva template library. So if you are creating something for your business and you want it to feel unique to your business, it's gonna be really critical to.[00:27:00] 

Take the time to customize it, to modify it so that it visually matches everything else that you're putting out. And I think not just from a. A point of trying to, trying to create something that's distinct from other businesses, but also you do wanna create a really consistent brand experience for your customers, for your potential customers.

You want them be to be able to recognize content that you're putting out as belonging to your brand. Even if they don't see your logo on it, I think it just creates a better experience as a potential client for someone. If everything looks, you know, consistent across the board through your social graphics, your lead magnets that you're putting out your website, all of your marketing material really needs to be cohesive and I think anything that you're creating to support your business should be carrying that same brand kit across it.

Brenda Meller: I love it. Great advice. All right, we got some more questions and comments that are coming in. , is there a Canva expert in this group? Now, ironically, if I'm like literally [00:28:00] right here if you look at your LinkedIn profile and I think across socials, I've even seen like you've got that circle badge around it says Canva verified expert.

Can you tell us what that means? , 

Brenda Cadman: The Canva Verified Experts Program. It is not something that you apply for. It's not something that you can sign up and go through and and gain a certification. The verified experts are handpicked by Canvas Community Managers.

So I am one of only 44 in the world right now. Wow. When we first, when the program launched I think it was March, I think it was March of last year. Oh, the time just all blends together. There was some. Previous iterations of various kinds of official programs. This particular program launched, I believe it was early last year, and there, there were only 25 of us at that time.

So it has grown, it will continue to grow over time, but we are chosen based on the kind of content that we're putting out and the kind of trainings that we do and the communities that we're building. They are, you know, handpicking us and inviting people [00:29:00] into the program. So I'm, I'm one of only 44 in the world and one of only two in Canada.

Brenda Meller: I think you're one in a million personally. You're Oh, awesome. Thank you. And you're, you're helpful and you've got resources and you do, you did a lot of freebies and we'll talk a little bit more about that later. But I know there's a couple people that are in comments right now. They're really excited about this conversation and this person says, I'm excited to learn about branding and how Canva will help me.

 Let's assume they're brand new, starting with Canva. What's, what's your recommendations Right when they're first starting their account?


Brenda Cadman: I. I know that it can feel really overwhelming and I think it's important to not get sucked into the feeling of I need to learn how to use every single feature that's available to me. In here. I, there's some very sexy new features that have been added as far as AI goes, and it can be a real time suck if you start going down that particular path, but it also can feel very overwhelming and I think that's why a lot of people are.

Maybe start using it and they don't continue using it. I feel like it's intuitive. A lot of people [00:30:00] do, but if you're brand new to using it, it can feel like a lot. So I think focusing, if you're brand new to using Canva, focus on some of the really key foundations as far as getting started. So understanding the differences between the free and pro plan and whether or not, you know, you do need to upgrade to the, the the paid version is important.

In understanding how you're gonna be using the platform, setting up that brand kit, setting up some folders, finding a set of templates in Canvas template library that can get you started. You don't need a lot. You don't need to have a whole suite of designs. Choose a couple and then you can always. You know, resize them as we talked about earlier, into the various other dimensions that you need.

So at least you're starting with something that is consistent and cohesive and recognizable for your brand. But if you don't have a brand kit yet, this is where a lot of folks are. They're not at the point of even putting their branding into a brand kit cuz they don't have a brand kit. Mm-hmm. I do feel.

I feel [00:31:00] like camp, it's not a replacement for a talented graphic designer or branding designer. I think when you're at the point in your business that you are ready to invest in some key brand assets, I, I think it's important to do so, to have a. Professional designer, create your logo for you and work with you to determine what your fonts and your colors should be.

Cuz it goes beyond, I like these colors, it's, yeah, what is my brand personality? Who is my ideal client? Who you know, what are my brand values? All these things tend to go into choosing how that is expressed visually through colors and fonts and all of those good things. Mm-hmm. So investing in those key pieces so you can pull them into your brand kit, that's gonna also ensure that what you're creating looks.

Far more professional and less amateur if you are not at that point yet, though there are also a lot of I think if you search on mood board or brand board in Canvas template library, or again, a lot of these third party template websites, you can get pre-done [00:32:00] for you kinds of brand boards. It's not ideal because they don't necessarily fit for your audience, but you can find something to get started, in least.

It's a starting point. I, again, we're not looking for perfection here. I wanna keep you moving. I wanna see progress. So, but choosing something and then sticking with it until you're ready to. Do it a little more officially can be a good way to get started. I'm rambling a little bit there, but hopefully my key point is coming across.

Brenda Meller: No, totally. This is awesome. And I wasn't even aware and I just typed in, I have Canva open in another window I typed in mood board. Mm-hmm. And I never thought about doing this cuz I have to your point, when I first started my business, Brenda, I created my logo using Canva.

I went through the logo templates. I found one that I liked. I changed the color pink, of course, and I changed I think some font. But then I kept it and then I got to the point where I'm like, it's okay. But I know it could be better. And I reached out to my friend who was a graphic designer and I said, I'll pay you, make my logo better.

And she did. And she created a little, a mini brand library of, of [00:33:00] assets for me using that. And then I got to the point where I'm like, I need more colors than pink. And I went out to, I dunno if it was five or Upworks. And I had somebody create secondary palette and things like that. I think I said it right, that time.

Secondary palette of colors for me inside Canva. And if you type in brand board, It creates this, there's like these, these templates in here and you could use these as a starting point. I think this is, this is really brilliant. I never thought about that before. 

Brenda Cadman: There's an important limitation that I would be remiss if I didn't mention though it, and that comes to the licensing in terms of using Canva to create your logo.

You can't trademark a logo that you've created in Canva if you have included anything from their Elements library. So if they're, if you're using something in it beyond fonts, Lines and shapes. Mm-hmm. You're not gonna be able to trademark that, which could cause a problem down the road. And the reason you can't trademark it is because everybody has access to those same images.

But I typically will recommend exactly what you did. You could create something and then use that as you know, [00:34:00] a starting point to hand to a graphic designer to say, could you recreate this but z it up a little bit, or tweak this and they can make it, you know. Use it. You're basically using it as an in inspiration starting point.

Yeah. But if you really are not in a position of hiring a graphic designer yet, you can absolutely create your logo in Canva, but understand that you're gonna wanna stick to like fonts and lines and shapes. And then you're also going to have to understand that you're not gonna be able to save all the various image file types that a graphic designer would be able to create for you, that you might need for print in the future.

But again, It's a starting point. You don't have to have nothing to use in your designs. You can start with this. Just understand the limitations of that approach. 

Brenda Meller: That's really great. And the good thing is because you are a Canva expert, you've seen it all, you've heard it all, you've probably got a lot of these questions that are already coming in.

So the things that we're asking today are, are not new. And we've, we've got, maybe I'll, I'll finish with a few more questions. I'm gonna go for this one, Christopher Johnson. Hey Christopher, how are you? [00:35:00] He's saying, can we convert designs into templates? He keeps making a copy of a prior design and starting there.

Is there a better way? What do you think? 

Brenda Cadman: You can, yes, the answer is you can do both. This really comes down to how you prefer to use Canva. Some folks just like to create a copy of their design. They, that works for them. I often will do that, that works for me. But if you're afraid of overwriting an original template, or if you have team members and you wanna make sure that they don't accidentally overwrite something, you can save a design as a template.

And what happens when you do that is once it's saved as a brand template, when you click on that design, it's going to prompt you to either, do you want to edit the original or do you want to use this template? And then it'll make a copy for you. You just need to open that design if you wanna convert a design into a brand template.

Open the design. Click on the share button that appears in the top right corner. Mm-hmm. And when you click on that, you may already see an option to save it as a brand template. If you don't, just go down to the more section and you'll find it under [00:36:00] there. And then you just publish that design as a brand template.

It's going to then change on your projects page. It'll no longer look like a standard design. It'll look similar, but you'll see a little label on it that says brand template. And when you go click on it in the future, it's gonna prompt you to make a copy. 

Brenda Meller: Okay. I have Canva open cause I was like, I never knew this.

There's so many. I'm gonna have to watch the playback and look through everything. And by and by the way, thank you Christopher, for your question. I want to just kind of start to. Ask some questions, Brenda, about how we can get ahold of you. And I wanna pull up your LinkedIn, let me pull that up in here.

 And I see that you've got the circle badge, I'm assuming your headshot photo with the circle around it that was created in Canva. Is that fair to say? 

Brenda Cadman: Yes, it's, it's a template that they provided us when we.

Gained that title to be able to use. So it's a nice visual way of letting people know No, no, I'm not just saying, and I'm, I'm an expert. I actually have some verification here. So yeah. I tend to use that as my profile everywhere. 

Brenda Meller: Awesome. And I see that you're on LinkedIn obviously. Are you [00:37:00] open to connecting with folks that are watching or listening to the playback later?

Brenda Cadman: Yeah, absolutely. If they just, when inviting or asking to connect, if they just say they were watching. Our conversation that'll help me know where they're coming from, but yeah, absolutely. 

Brenda Meller: Yeah, just say, I mean, the good thing is her name is Brenda, my name is Brenda. You could say, I watched both of you Brenda's on the LinkedIn live or on the YouTube, or I heard you on the podcast or wherever it was that you heard us, and I see that you have crater mode turned on.

And I know that because I see that you, you have the talks about and the hashtags that are listed there. So I'm gonna let folks know that if they do visit your profile, From their version of of LinkedIn, they're gonna see the follow button as the default button. That will be the blue button on their view.

Follow mine says message because we're already connected, but they're gonna see follow if. If you all want to connect with Brenda Cadman, you'll have to click under the more menu and underneath that in your view, you will see an option. They will either say personalized invite or connect, and then. In your invitation, just add a note and mention that you watched her listen in on the LinkedIn live or on the playback.[00:38:00] 

And if there's something helpful, let her know that as well. So there's your LinkedIn. Now I wanna pull up your website and, and, and I'll ask you if you could tell us a little bit about. What are the services that you offer? You've got so much expertise here, but tell us a little bit about the services that you offer.

Brenda Cadman: So I focus quite a lot on courses for Canva courses, you know, Canva for beginners, the Creating Your Canva brand, kid getting organized in Canva, and there's a couple more of those coming out. I a couple more courses coming out in the summer, but I do also offer a Canva organization, v i p day. And there's a couple more.

Kind of done with you or done for you service offerings related to organization that are gonna be coming in the next few months. But for the most part, it is courses that v i p day and I have a membership opening in a couple of weeks for the Canvas support hub. So if you have questions, it's just gonna be a really low ticket monthly membership where folks can get answers to their [00:39:00] questions each month without having to struggle with Canva Zone support.

Brenda Meller: Right. Well, I, and I, and I think when I first started, got get started on Canva, I, I feel like there was a video library or something where I was going on Canva. I, I don't remember. It's been so long since I've been on the platform now. But I know that you have some freebies as well. Do you wanna tell us a little bit about the freebies that you have 

for folks?

Brenda Cadman: Sure. And they're changing, they constantly change. I'm gonna be retiring a number of them that are available right now, but they'll always be redirected to other stuff. I think if you go to actually I don't think I. Do I have it linked there? I don't even have it linked there. We'll have to change that.

I think going to the everything page there is probably the best place to see everything that is available. Everything okay currently. And there you'll see a Canva introduction bundle. I think it's the first thing that's on there when you scroll down. And that doesn't have any opt-in, there's no it's just free resources to get started.

And then you'll also see any other available freebies listed on that page. 

Brenda Meller: That's wonderful, and I highly, highly recommend you [00:40:00] guys. Check out this link. Go to Brenda cadman.com/everything. By the way, it's b r e N d a C a d m a n.com/everything. Go to that webpage, check out her free resources, get on her email list and, and check out her offerings.

And if you ever hear of someone who's struggling with Canva, And, and wants an expert to work with. Literally, she is certified by Canva. And if the mothership has certified her, you know that the tips and advice she's gonna give you are gonna be good and they're gonna be knowledgeable, and she's gonna bring you all the latest features in the ins and outs and of everything.

So Brenda, this has been such a delightful conversation. Someone in in comments was calling us Brenda squared. There's a Michelle Squared.

If you ever wanna come back on LinkedIn live and talk with me again I would be delighted and you can pick the topic. Cuz I feel like there's, there's so much not, not overlap, but there's so much that we do that's complimentary. Mm-hmm. And there's even a person who asked the question[00:41:00] I didn't pull it up on screen.

Yeah. But how can Canva help me create content on LinkedIn? I mean, there's a whole show right there we could talk about Yeah. Things. But I just wanna say thank you so much for joining. Any final comments for us on how to use Canva more efficiently in our business? 

Brenda Cadman: I think. It's just important. I, like I mentioned earlier, don't feel like you have to learn all the things.

You're never going to learn all the things that are available in Canva. I don't know all the things available in Canva because once you master something, they they improve it, they add things to it, they revise it, and it is. An ongoing learning process. So just understand that, you know, figure out what you wanna create.

Just focus on a few things. You can build your skills over time. You will build your skills over time just by using it on a regular basis and learning and adding to your knowledge a little bit at a time. And then there are resources available to you if you get stuck on, you know, learning how to do, create a particular design that you're trying to create or a particular You know, effect that you're [00:42:00] trying to create.

There's a lot. I'm not the only Canva expert out there. There are 43 other fantastic folks who have their own resources and YouTube channels, and there's a lot of amazing free content out there as well as well to help you if you do get stuck while you're learning to use this tool to support your business.

Brenda Meller: Well, I'm already seeing a couple questions coming in about your membership opportunities, so once that launches, I'll make sure that I put that in the, in the show notes, both on YouTube as well as on the podcast page. So stay tuned on that very exclusive opportunity. All right, well, Brenda, this has been a delight.

I wanna thank you so much. I feel like the, the hour's really flown by. As we've been talking here, we're coming up to the end of our segment. And if you enjoyed this discussion, we would love it if you could share this along wherever you're watching or listening from.

If it's on LinkedIn, click on share as soon as the video is done playing and share that video out. Tag us both. Use the at sign to tag us in your, in your comments when you share that out and tell people something that you learned or maybe like why they should watch this video. I know there's people in your network that would benefit and they'd be, they would be [00:43:00] really inclined to look for some of the tips.

I'm gonna watch the playback myself, cuz I already feel like there's things I could do that I wasn't aware of. And I just wanna say thank you again, Brenda. It's, it's been a pleasure. I hope I get the chance to meet you in person someday as well. 

Brenda Cadman: Someday. Absolutely. We'll, we'll make it happen. 

Brenda Meller: Yeah.

There we go. All right. All right. Well everyone, stay safe, stay healthy. Thank you all so much for watching, and we look forward to seeing you on LinkedIn.

Take care, everyone.