FACT: Almost everybody messes up Twitter profile design. Does this include you? Yes, it does (probably). In this post, we’ll set you straight with a start-to-finish tutorial on designing your Twitter profile, including freebie Illustrator & Photoshop templates to resolve your crappy background once and for all (click here to skip the examples below and go straight to the templates).
In order to make an impact, your brand needs to be consistently crafted from one media channel to the next. This means your social profiles, e-books, white papers, business cards, t-shirts, letterhead, water bottles, brand-encrusted condoms, fluffy stuffed animals with your logo stitched on their forehead, the list goes on!
Now, we understand, you get busy, and there isn’t always time for every little thing. But the way your brand appears on Twitter is serious stuff.
Designing Your Twitter Page Starts with the Background
Sounds simple enough: make a picture, upload it to Twitter. Done deal. Right? Wrong! While slapping your logo on a white background is a start, most tweeters can’t seem to color inside the lines. Even the biggest brands get it wrong:
Even the prince of darkness can’t seem to get Twitter right.
WOW! What does it take to get it right???
With the formats for these social platforms constantly changing, it can be hard to keep up. Here are the 4 most common Twitter background design mistakes
Is your Design too small?
Take for instance, the @JulliardSchool:
Staples, Juliard, ChexMix, and Satan have the same issue — their background images are just too small.
Is the left column too wide?
The left-aligned design of @DoritosUSA’s Twitter profile doesn’t quite fit inside the space. Doritos needs to know that the left column on a 13″ MacBook only shows 221 px worth of space!
Is your design not centered?
@SnoopDogg Snoop Dogg’s profile looks great on a 13 inch laptop.
…but on a 21 inch monitor, it doesn’t work….
How to do it right
It is very important to make sure your image looks good on any size monitor, from 13 inch notebooks, to 27 inch iMacs. The image should be seamless, immersing the viewer in your magical brand. Sizing issues can cause unwanted distraction, and lack of design cohesiveness can create trust issues for your brand.
Update for Macbook Retina Display Users:
The 15 inch macbook Retina display is 2880 by 1800 px. (Amazing) and if you wish to create a left aligned photographic background img to accomodate those users, the image must be 2880 by 1800 px. If you are creating a seamless centered background, you don’t need to worry about this, as the image stays centered to any screen size.
Here are some people who do Twitter design right:
@Mattel on 13″ MacBook
@Mattel on iMac
@Weightwatchers on 13″ MacBook
@Weightwatchers on iMac
@Pepsi 13″ MacBook
@Pepsi on iMac
@Armani on 13″ MacBook
@Armani on iMac
Centered Background Images
This is our favorite method to create a great looking Twitter profile page, because no matter what screen size your user has, the image stays centered. In settings, under the design tab, be sure to change the background position to “centered”. Here’s ours (@iloveLoudNoises):
@iloveLoudNoises on 13″ MacBook
@iloveLoudNoises on iMac
Also, set your twitter background color to match the background color of your image to create a seamless presentation. Be sure to set your link color as well. Access your settings from the Twitter Design Settings page.
Left aligned Background Images
Pepsi and Weight Watchers did their best with their photographic background images, but that’s because they didn’t know about our free template! Their profiles are left aligned, which is fine, but the downside to this method is the image needs to fit larger screens, which means a larger file size. If you go down this path (which we don’t suggest if you are starting from scratch) be sure to make your image atleast 2560-by-1440 for a 27 inch iMac (HUGE RIGHT??)
These are tricky, because things can go horribly wrong. If you don’t tile a seamless image, you can use a large patterned image. However, Barbie (@BarbieStyle) messed hers up by not making sure the pattern image was large enough.
However @PeepsandCompany and @McDonalds have large enough images that fit within even the largest monitors. 2880 by 1800 px
Twitter recently made the header design feature the only option for styling your twitter profile. To have a completely designed profile, three images need to be uploaded: your profile image, header image, and background image. We have created two templates for you to use in your choice of Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop.
Alright, alright — make with the freebies!
Remember these basic rules
- The safest size to create your image is 2880 by 1800 px. Or match your image background hex color with a chosen twitter background color (to make it seamless) Our template is to make sure your important design content stays within the macbook size.
- Use JPEG Mini to shrink the size (in MB) of your JPEG photo so it doesnt take too long to load
- Design around the twitter content in the center.
- Choose Center alignment in the design settings on Twitter
- Make sure your background color is set to match the color of the background image to create that seamless look your mom would be proud of.
With these rules in mind, we want you to take advantage of our free design templates, in both Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop:
Related Posts from LoudNoises:
- Fix your Facebook Profile? (Free Template) Click here.
- Does your Google Plus need a lift? (Free Template) Do that here.
Follow us on Twitter: Follow @iloveLoudNoises