Google AdWords Guide on How to Create a Campaign

Transform your traffic and sales overnight using Google Adwords and follow the 10 steps below to create your first Adwords campaign today. Avoid the most common mistakes and save yourself hundreds of euros, time and frustration!

Benefits of Google Adwords

Here are three key benefits of online advertising and Google Adwords:

  1. Instant Results: Drive Targeted Round-The-Clock Traffic to Your Website in Minutes.
  2. Highly Targeted: Target by keywords, location, language, time of day & more!
  3. Cost Effective: You’ll only pay when someone clicks your ad. Pay per Click (PPC).

Google Adwords vs. Facebook Ads

Which is more effective? What to use for higher converting traffic? Both can be highly effective but they need a different approach because the users intent is different on both websites:

GoogleFacebook
People use Google to find a solution to their problem. e.g “Emergency plumber”, “wedding venue”. Therefore, AdWords is a good to target these people actively searching because you are theoretically providing that solution.People use Facebook to connect with people and share. Therefore, Facebook Ads can be good to leverage word-of-mouth as it’s already a social venue. This is perfect for problems people might have but not actively search, or problems they don’t yet know they have.

How Google Adwords Works

Ads on Google and it’s display network are sold by auction. Advertisers bid on keywords in order to serve an ad which, when clicked upon, leads the searcher to a website landing page. However, unlike traditional auctions, the highest bidder does not always win. Google takes 2 factors into consideration:

  1. Quality Score (expected clickthrough ratead relevance, and landing page experience).
  2. Bid (e.g. 1 euro)

Google multiple these two factors together to create a new measure: Ad Rank.

Ad Rank = Quality Score * Bid

The bidder with the highest Ad Rank gets the top spot and so on down to either the last ad qualifying.

Recommendation

Focus on consistently improving your quality score so you can reduce costs and out rank higher bidding competitors. See details about that keyword’s Quality Score by clicking the white speech bubble next to any keyword.


10 Steps to Set Up your First AdWords Campaign

1. Define Success and Set Up Tracking

Before paying for a single click, you first need to determine exactly what you want your advertising to accomplish. Always set your goals first and make decisions towards those goals. For example your goals may be to increase:

  • Brand Awareness
  • Online Sales
  • Phone Calls
  • App Dowloads
  • New Leads
  • In Store Purchases
  • Expand into a New Territory

It’s OK to change or refine your goals later on but if you don’t know exactly what you want. While Google can’t determine your goals for you, they try and make it easy for you to track your goals once you figure them out.

Recommendation
  1. Set up Goals in Google Analytics: AdWords may show a Keyword has a great click through rate (CTR) but when you look deeper in Google Analytics, you may see that term doesn’t convert well or has a high Bounce Rate. That kind of information can really help you effectively optimise your account.
  2. Link your Adwords Accounts to Google Analytics and Search ConsoleCreate an AdWords account and go to Google AdWords settings > linked accounts and pick the appropriate Analytics and Search Console profiles.
  3. Link Google Analytics to Adwords: Go to Google Analytics admin area > pick the correct profiles to link and you’ll have Adwords data in Analytics and visa versa.


2. Analyze your PPC Competition

The second huge mistake many people make is not doing any competitor research before they create their first campaign. This exercise gives you an instant advantage when writing your ad copy because you can improve on your competitors best strategies.

Recommendation
  1. Search Google: Check out the ads you’ll be up against by searching for some of your best keywords in Google.
  2. Note Down Compelling Ad Copy: What makes you want to click? Look for great offers, certain prices, deals or product benefits make the ads more compelling.
  3. Review Competitor Landing Pages: See what your competitors landing pages are like. Do they ads go to their homepage and are call to actions visible?
  4. Spy on Your Competitors: Use this free tool Spyfu to get even more insights.

3. Have a Good Landing Page

Having a landing page dedicated to your advertising campaign objective is a huge part of maximizing the return you’ll see from your ad investment.

One of the biggest mistakes that AdWords beginners make is driving paid traffic to their homepage. Your homepage is great for explaining what your business is about, but it’s never going to be as effective as a dedicated landing page at getting conversions. Especially for e-commerce businesses, they should send traffic to the appropriate product or category instead of the homepage.

Good landing pages, take customers exactly where they expect to go, and they don’t need to click to find what they were originally searching for in Google.

Recommendation
  • Begin with the end in mind: Remember, paid search won’t fix a bad landing page or a high-friction shopping cart experience. Before you get started, you should have a mobile optimized website or landing page that you want to send traffic.
  • Match your ad keywords with your landing page headline: Don’t try and reinvent the wheel. Start with a high converting landing page template from a company like Leadpages and add your content from there.

4. Select the Right Campaign Type

When you start setting up your AdWords campaign, you’ll need to choose a campaign type and a campaign sub-type. The campaign type determines things like where your ads can show to customers on Google’s advertising networks, and what format they can be in, such as text or video.

Adwords Ads can be displayed in the Search Network (Google & partners sites) and across their Display Network (YouTube, Gmail, Wall Street Journal, New York Time etc.). There are six main campaigns types you can choose from:

  1. Search Network with Display Select (can be very broad!)
  2. Search Network Only (Google Search and Search partners)
  3. Display Network Only (Google’s network of partner sites)
  4. Shopping (Best ways to create Shopping Ads)
  5. Video (Video Ads on YouTube and across the Web)
  6. Universal App Campaign (Promote app, across Search, Display and YouTube)
Recommendation
  • Login into Google Adwords. For your first campaign, select on “Search Network Only”. Click “all features” and untick “include search partners” to target campaign even further.
  • Budgets are set at the campaign level, so creating separate campaigns if you want to run different types of campaigns for your can manage your budget.

5. Target your Audience

The ability to target your ads is one of the the key benefits of online advertising. It allows you to control your costs and also drive more targeted (and high converting!) traffic to your website.

5 Ways to Target Your Adwords Ads:

  1. Location (city, zip code etc.)
  2. Language
  3. Time of day (ex: show ads during business hours only)
  4. Device targeting (mobile, tablet, desktop, certain operating systems, carriers etc.)
  5. Keywords (target your audience further by selecting keywords – step 9)
Recommendation
  • Use Available Data: To improve the accuracy of your targeting, use available data in Google Analytics and from your Facebook Page.
  • Language: If you want to target two languages, it’s best to create a separate campaign for that language so that you can control the budget separately for that campaign and include only relevant language ads.

6. Determine your Bids and Budgets

Choose the right bidding strategy for your marketing goals.

Set the Bids for your Ads in 7 Ways:

  1. Search Page Location Target: Automated bidding strategy to show your ad on the top of the page or on the first page of Google search results.
  2. CPA Target: Bidding strategy that sets bids to help get as many conversions as possible at the target cost-per-acquisition (CPA) you set.
  3. ROAS Target: Automated bidding strategy across multiple campaigns, ad groups, and keywords to help achieve an average return on ad spend (ROAS) equal to the target you set.
  4. Outranking Share Target: Automated bidding strategy that help your ads outrank ads from another domain.
  5. Maximise Clicks: Automated strategy to help get as many clicks as possible within your budget.
  6. Enhanced CPC: Raises your bid for clicks that seem more likely to lead to a sale or conversion on your website.
  7. Manual CPC: A bidding method that lets you set your own maximum cost-per-click (CPC) for your ads. This differs from automated bid strategies, which set bid amounts for you.
Recommendation

For your first campaign, enter the info below in the 3 fields in Adwords:

  • Bid Strategy: Select “Manual CPC”
  • Default bid. Enter “1 euro”.
  • Budget: Enter “20 euros” a day

7. Write Effective Ads

Follow these 6 tips to write effective text ads:

  1. Match your ad to your landing page: People might leave your website if they don’t find what they expect.
  2. Highlight what makes you unique: Free shipping? Dazzling variety? Tell people! Showcase the products, services, or offers that make you competitive.
  3. Include prices, promotions, and exclusives: If you have a limited-time discount or stock an exclusive product, say so.
  4. Empower customers to take action: Include calls to action like purchase, call today, order, browse, sign up, or get a quote make clear what the next steps are.
  5. Include at least one of your keywords: For example, if you’ve included digital cameras as a keyword, your ad headline could be “Buy Digital Cameras.”
  6. Follow Google’s editorial guidelines: Don’t overuse CAPLOCKS, exclamation points, use GiM!M1CkY TEXT and S.P.A.C.I.NG. More info here.
Recommendation

Use all characters given to write your text ad: Your are paying for space. Get to zero in each line – it helps push other competing ads further down the page.


8. Choose Profitable Keywords

Start with 10-20 keywords for each ad group. Choose phrases that customers would use to search for your products and services. Be specific: avoid one-word keywords. Research Keywords by spying on competitors and also using the Google Adwords Keyword Planner Tool.

Of of the most expensive mistake people make is not using the appropriate match types. These control when your ads appear.

  • Broad Match: Default match type. Shows ads to searches for similar phrases or searches. very broad!
  • Phrase Match: Enter keywords in Adwords using quotes marks on “keyword” for phrase match targeting.
  • Exact Match: Enter keywords in Adwords using square brackets on [keyword] for phrase match targeting.
  • Broad Match Modifier: Add plus sign on +keywords for broad modifier match.
  • Negative Match: -keyword. Ex: free, cheap, torrent, youtube.
Recommendation

Start with 10 keywords for each ad group: Focus on keyword that show intent to buy (not people just learning about a topic).


9. Advanced Campaign Settings

  • Negative Keywords: Add Negative keywords to the negative keywords tabs.  -keyword. e.g. free, cheap, torrent, youtube.
  • Ad Extensions: Create more reasons to click your ad and increase it’s prominence in the search results. Enhance your ad with Site Links, Call Links, Location. More info here.
  • Remarketing: Great to show ads to people who have visited your website or used your app. More info here.

10. Measure and Optimize

Don’t just set it and forget it. Running ads is a constant game of optimization. There’s always new opportunities to pursue for growth so don’t let it just sit there. If you want to get the most out of your AdWords campaigns remember to test things like ad copy, bid price, and landing pages.

Recommendation
  • Optimise or pause underperforming ads.
  • Reinvest budgets in ads that are working have high CTR’s and conversion rates.

Share your experiences using Google AdWords in the comments!

Check other posts about marketing in the Marketing section of my blog

Adobe Illustrator Tutorial: Koala

koala illustrator
Let’s create this cute koala character climbing on a tree in Adobe Illustrator. This is an easy, fun tutorial for those who’ve just started to learn how to use this tool. Just follow the steps below!

Create a Koala Character in Adobe Illustrator

Step 1

Let’s create a cute koala in Illustrator! First of all, open your Adobe Illustrator and create a new document. For this, go to File > New. Let’s create a New document with 600 x 600 px Width and Height. Then click OK.

Now we are going to create the koala’s head. Look at the left panel on your workspace—the Tools panel (to open it go to Window > Tools). There, you can find the Ellipse Tool (L), which you will use to create the head.

So, let’s take the Ellipse Tool (L) and draw an ellipse. Set the color to R=171 G=175 B=166. Take the Direct Selection Tool (A) from the Tools panel and select the left and right anchor points. Move them down using the arrows on your keyboard.

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Step 2

Now we want to give the koala’s head a slightly fluffy effect. Take a look at the top panel of your workspace and find Effect on the tool bar. Go to Effect > Distort and Transform > Roughen. In the new dialogue window, enter the following options:

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Step 3

Let’s create the ear. Keep the fill color, and use the Ellipse Tool (L) to create a circle. To create a nice, even circle, hold the Shift key while drawing. You can see that your circle is already becoming rougher.

Then add a smaller circle with the fill color R=221 G=223 B=218. This smaller circle is already roughened, but we don’t need the roughening effect. To delete the rough effect, on the Appearance panel (Window > Appearance), grab the word “Roughen” and move to the trash icon. In the second image you can see how to remove this effect. Look at the circle now!

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Here is how to move the word “Roughen” to the trash.

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Step 4

Keep the whole ear selected and right-click your mouse. In the pop-up window, select Transform > Reflect. Select Vertical axis of reflection and press Copy.

Move the second ear and place it on the upper right side of the head. To make the ears align correctly, you can select both ears, right-click the mouse and select Group. While holding down the Shift key, select the head and the ears together. Go to the Align panel (Window > Align) and press Horizontal Align Center.

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Step 5

Now on to the eyes. Choose a dark gray fill color, which you can see in the image below, and draw an oval using the Ellipse Tool (L). Draw a small white circle to give a sparkle to the eye. Then create another eye—keep the existing eye selected and while holding the Alt key, move it to the right. You can see that you just created a copy of the eye by holding the Alt key.

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Step 6

Using the Ellipse Tool (L), create an ellipse. Move down the left and right anchor points, just as you did for the koala’s head. You will get an egg shape. Then create a copy of it (Control-C, Control-V) and make it smaller. Change the fill color to R=75 G=76 B=72. Place it as shown in the image below:

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Step 7

Place the whole nose on the koala’s face. Try to put the nose right between the eyes. Look how cute it is!

koala illustrator

Step 1

Now, we need create the tree trunk. Take the Rectangle Tool (M) and create a rectangle. You can see the fill color on the image below, or feel free to choose any color of your choice.

Look closely at the Tools panel and try to find the Warp Tool (Shift-R). Do you see a hand with a finger holding some strange thread? That’s it. But before using it, let’s adjust the options on this tool. Double-click on it and in the new dialogue window, enter:

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Step 2

Once you have created the tree trunk and adjusted the options on the Warp Tool (Shift-R), draw the branch using this tool. In the image below, you can see the directions of the movement.

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Step 3

Make the fill color darker (R=86 G=52 B=29) and draw a few long rectangles around the trunk. Use the Warp Tool (Shift-R) over them again.

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Step 4

Place the koala’s head behind the trunk. To place it behind, select the whole head, group it together (right-click > Group) and press Control-XControl-B. Rotate the head a little bit to the right.

koala illustrator

Step 1

To draw the paws, start with an oval. Set the fill color to R=189 G=191 B=183. Add a rough effect for the paw as you did for the head and ears (go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Roughen). Enter the options you see below.

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Step 2

Copy-paste the paw to have four of them, and place them as shown:

koala illustrator

Step 1

We’re almost there! Once you have an ellipse, with fill color R=163 G=165 B=16, pick the Convert Anchor Point Tool (Shift-C), and make sharp anchor points by clicking on the top and bottom anchor points. You’ll get a simple leaf shape.

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Step 2

Copy-paste to create as many leaves as you want, and put them on the tree.

koala illustrator

Step 3

Let’s create a background for this illustration. Set the fill color to  R=237 G=234 B=239 and click on your art board. In the new dialogue window, enter Width 600 pxHeight 600 px and click OK. Place the square behind everything (keep it selected and press Control-XControl-B). And… we are done! You’ve created a cute koala in Illustrator!

koala illustrator

You can download Adobe Illustrator and start your free trial now!

Check other Adoble Illustrator tutorials in the Adobe Illustrator section of my blog

Adobe Illustrator Tutorial: Raccoon

illustrator tutorial
Lets create an adorable raccoon. In this Illustrator tutorial you will learn how to create part of the raccoon’s body by moving the handles of the anchor points and then combining them into a final creation. Just follow the steps below!

Create a Raccoon with this Illustrator Tutorial

Step 1

Let’s start this Illustrator Tutorial! I hope you’ve already opened Adobe Illustrator and created a New document. Let’s start by creating the head of our raccoon. Hit the Ellipse Tool (L) and make an ellipse. Using the Convert Anchor Point Tool (Shift-C), make sharp corners on the ellipse; while keeping the ellipse selected, click on the left and right anchor points—these two points should be sharp now. Keep the sharp anchor points selected and press the down arrow button on your keyboard a few times.

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Step 2

We’re not quite done yet. Select this shape and go to Effect > Warp > Bulge. Enter the following settings in the new dialogue window. Then expand the shape (Object > Expand Appearance).

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Step 3

Let’s add some depth to the head. Create a copy of this shape, in front of the original one (Control-C, Control-F), shift it down a little bit, and then make this copy slightly bigger. Select the original shape again and make another copy in the front (Control-C, Control-F). Keeping these two upper copies selected, go to the Pathfinder panel and press the Minus Front button. You will get a moon-like shape. Change the fill color as you see in the image below.

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Step 1

For the eyes, create an ellipse and slightly tilt it to the left. Add a dark circle, followed by a small white circle as a highlight. Keep the whole eye selected and take the Reflect Tool (O). Holding down the Alt key, click on the right side of the eye. In the new dialogue window, enter Vertical and press Copy. You should have two eyes now.

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Step 2

Position them as you wish, on the previous head shape. The lower you position the eyes, the more the raccoon will have a baby-animal look.

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Step 1

Now that you’ve learned in this Illustrator tutorial how to create a sharp anchor point (remember how you created the head?), let’s create a dark ellipse and make the bottom point sharp. Add a tiny white ellipse as a highlight.

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Step 2

Now for the mouth. Draw two ellipses using the Ellipse Tool (L) with no fill and with the stroke color noted below. On the Stroke panel, check Round Cap. After that, grab the Scissors Tool (C) and click on the left and right anchor points of the first and then the second ellipse. Delete the upper parts of the two ellipses. Take the Line Segment Tool (\) and add a tiny line in the middle—we just created a cute mouth for our raccoon!

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Step 3

Combine the nose and mouth together. Add a small ellipse behind them (Control-X, Control-B).

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Step 4

Place everything from the previous steps on the head of our raccoon.

illustrator tutorial

Step 1

Let’s add some details which are usual for raccoons. Draw an ellipse on the left side of the head, behind the left eye. Take the Direct Selection Tool (A) and move the handles of the anchor points to achieve the result which you see in the second image.

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Step 2

Make a new copy of the head in front (Control-C, Control-F), and select the dark shape from the previous step together. Press the Intersect button in Pathfinder.

Keep the resulting shape selected. Take the Reflect Tool (O) and press the Enter button. Check Vertical in the new dialogue window and press Copy. You’ve just made the reflection of this dark shape. Keep this shape still selected, and now select the head too. Go to the Align panel and press the Horizontal Align Right button. Be careful—it’s very important that you have checked Align To: Align to Selection (see image below).

illustrator tutorial
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Step 3

Let’s add some details. Select the two dark shapes behind the eyes and make a copy in the front. The copies are marked with yellow strokes in the image below, but you don’t need to change the fill color. Move them down a little bit.

Create two copies again in front of the dark shapes. In total, you should have six dark shapes: two under the left eye, two under the right eye, one under the left eye, marked with a yellow stroke, and one under the right eye, also marked in the image with a yellow stroke.

Let’s first concentrate on the left eye. Select the two upper dark gray shapes and press Minus Front in Pathfinder. Change the fill color of the resulting shape (as noted below). Now concentrate on the right eye. Select the two upper shapes and press Minus Front in Pathfinder. Again, change the fill color of the resulting shape.

illustrator tutorial

Step 1

Using the Eye Dropper Tool (I), take the fill color from the head of the raccoon. We will create an ear from an ellipse—using warp will help us get what we need. Go to Effect > Warp > Arc. In the new window, adjust the options as shown in the image below; expand the resulting shape (Object > Expand Appearance). Create another copy in the front, making it darker and smaller.

illustrator tutorial

Step 2

Let’s add some depth to the ear. Create two copies of the ear in the front. Shift down the upper copy diagonally. Select the two upper copies and press Minus Front in Pathfinder. Change the fill color.

illustrator tutorial

Step 3

Using the Reflect Tool (O), create another ear.

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Step 4

Place them on the top of the head, but behind it.

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Step 1

The next step in this Illustrator tutorial is explaining how to create the body. For the body, create an ellipse (the same fill color as the head) and place it behind the whole head. Using the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the left and right anchor points and then move them down. Create a new copy in front of the body, and make it lighter and smaller.

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Step 2

Lets create the hands. Shift down the left and right anchor points of a newly created ellipse.

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Step 3

Create a copy in the front, and make it darker and narrower. Shift the new copy down, just slightly. Create a copy of this darker shape in the front and using the Eye Dropper Tool (I), take the color from the first shape you created at the beginning of this step. Make this smallest shape narrower and shift it up a little.

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Step 4

Place the hand on the left side of the body. Slightly tilt the hand to the left. Using the Reflect Tool (O) make a reflection of the hand, so you will get the right hand. Create another ellipse behind the whole body—this will finish off the arms. Don’t forget to shift down the left and right anchor points of this ellipse.

illustrator tutorial

Step 5

Now on to the legs. We won’t create the whole leg, just the visible parts, the feet. Create an ellipse and move the left and right anchor points upwards.

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Step 6

As you did for the head and the ear, use the same method to add some depth to the foot. One smaller and lighter copy of the foot along with the three tiny copies will finish the foot.

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Step 7

Put the foot under the left hand. Slightly tilt the foot to the left. Then make a reflection of this, which creates the right foot. Don’t forget to put the right foot under the right hand.

illustrator tutorial

Step 1

We’re almost there! Let’s move along to the tail. Draw an ellipse and make its left and right anchor points sharp.

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Step 2

During this step, we will add stripes to the tail. Draw a rectangle using the Rectangle Tool (M). While keeping it selected, hold down the Alt key and move the rectangle to the right. You will see that you just created a copy of the rectangle. Then press Control-D a few times to repeat your last action.

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Step 3

Group all the stripes together (right-click > Group) and go to Effect > Warp > Arc. Enter the options you see in the image below.

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Step 4

Expand the stripes (Object > Expand Appearance). Create a copy of the tail in the front (the light gray ellipse with sharp edges) and select the stripes together with it. Press Crop in Pathfinder.

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Step 5

Warp it.

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Step 6

Expand the tail (Object > Expand Appearance) and place it behind the whole body.

illustrator tutorial

Step 7

Let’s wrap up our illustration. Create a light pink (R 249, G 221, B 210) square behind the raccoon, 600 px width and height, by using the Rectangle Tool (M). And there you go! You have created a cute raccoon. I hope you have enjoyed this Illustrator tutorial!

illustrator tutorial

You can download Adobe Illustrator and start your free trial now!

Check other Adoble Illustrator tutorials in the Adobe Illustrator section of my blog

Adobe Illustrator Tutorial: Little Red Riding Hood

adobe illustrator
Let’s create this cute character in vector.  You will use the Pen Tool (P) and basic shapes such as the Rectangle Tool (M), the Ellipse Tool (L) and the Polygon Tool. This is a great tutorial for those who are getting the hang of Adobe Illustrator’s basic tools. Follow the steps below.

Create a Little Red Riding Hood Character in Adobe Illustrator

1. Create the face

Step 1

Let’s start by creating a New document. Then we will draw a circle (color R=223, G=178, B=139), using the Ellipse Tool (L). You want nice even circle, so you need to press and hold the Shift key for this. This will be the face of a little girl.

adobe illustrator

2. Create the eyes

Step 1

Next – the eyes. Take the Ellipse Tool (L) (color R=242, G=242, B=242) and draw another circle for an eye. If you put an eye in the lower part of the face, the Little Red Riding Hood will look more child like.

adobe illustrator

Step 2

Create another two circles as shown on the image below. Those are pupil of the eye (color R=84, G=49, B=36,) and a highlight (color R=255, G=255, B=255).

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Step 3

Now we draw the eyelashes, using the Pen Tool (P). Use the same brown color as a pupil of the eye. Change the direction of the Pen Tool to finish the first eyelash.

adobe illustrator

Step 4

Continue to draw second eyelash, than the third. Also don’t forget to close the path.

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Step 5

Now you have the eyelashes, however they are above the eye. Just drag them closer to eye and then drag it below the eye circles in the Layers panel.

adobe illustrator

Step 6

Now we will simply create another eye. Select whole eye with eyelashes (but not a face) and right-click on the mouse. Select Transform > Reflect. A dialogue window will appear, asking you to enter the axis of your reflection. You need to check Vertical and press Copy. Keep the selection of the second eye and drag it on the right side of the face.

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Step 7

Align eyes. Select two eyes, right-click on your mouse and select Group (Ctrl + G). Keep those selecting and holding Shift key select also a face. Go to Align panel (Window > Align) and press Horizontal Align Center.

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3. Create the mouth

Step 1

Draw a pink circle (color R=235, G=122, B=121).

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Step 2

Holding together Shift + Alt, move this circle a little up. The button Shift is for moving straight, and the button Alt – for duplicating the object. In Pathfinder panel, select Minus Front. Now you have a mouth.

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Step 3

Place her mouth on her face.

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4. Create the cheeks

Step 1

Let’s add some rosy cheeks, they are a great characteristic of youth and being in the fresh air. So, let’s draw the pink cheeks! Use the Ellipse Tool (L) to create an ellipse (color R=223, G=160, B=133).

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Step 2

Rotate the ellipse to the left.

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Step 3

Create the second cheek by selecting the first one and right-click your mouse and select Transform > Reflect. Select Vertical and click the Copy button in the Reflect Panel. Now you have two cheeks. Put them on the face.

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5. Create the hair

Step 1

You will need the Pen Tool (P) and the fill color R=135, G=83, B=65. Try to draw as shown on image below.

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Step 2

Continue drawing. Of course, you can draw another haircut, if you would like.

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Step 3

Lets add some highlights to the hair. Again use the Pen Tool (P) and the fill color R=144, G=96, B=77.

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Step 4

Make a few more. For more convenience you should draw the highlights directly over the hair.

adobe illustrator

6. Create the hood and cape

Step 1

The hood. Select the face and press Ctrl + C and after that Ctrl + B to duplicate the face behind. Keep the new circle selected, choose the fill color R=204, G=72, B=69 for it and make a little bit bigger than the face.

adobe illustrator

Step 2

Take the Direct Selection Tool (A) and select the highest anchor on the hood. Then press few times the key up on your keyboard.

adobe illustrator

Step 3

For the cape, choose red color as a hood (you can use for it the Eyedropper Tool (I). Then select the Pen Tool (P) and draw a shape as shown on the image below.

adobe illustrator

Step 4

Select this shape by the Selection Tool (V) and right-click your mouse. Select Transform > Reflect. On dialogue window what will appear select Vertical reflection and press Copy. You will have the same picture.

adobe illustrator

Step 5

Place the cape. under the head of Little Red Riding Hood.

adobe illustrator

Step 6

Choose the fill color R=242, G=118, B=140 and using the Pen Tool (P) draw the same shape as on the image below. Also you could create this shape from the Ellipse Tool (L) by adding or removing anchors. It’s a dress. Put a dress on its place and put it under the cape, using Ctrl + X and Ctrl + B.

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Et voilà! If you want you can create a light pink square and place it behind your character to create a nice background. I hope you liked it!


You can download Adobe Illustrator and start your free trial now!

Check other Adobe Illustrator tutorials in the Adobe Illustrator section of my blog

Adobe Illustrator Tutorial: Cactus

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Let’s create this little cactus character in vector using Adobe Illustrator. We will use basic shapes, the Line Segment Tool and a Warp Effect to create this cute cartoon character. Follow the steps below.

Create a Cactus Character in Adobe Illustrator

Step 1

To create a New Document in your Adobe Illustrator, go to File > New and enter the following options:

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Step 2

On the Tools panel, you can find the Rectangle Tool (M), which you will use to create the flower pot.

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Step 3

Take the Rectangle Tool (M), and on the middle of your art board, draw a rectangle. Then delete the stroke color and set the fill color to the one you see in the image below:

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Step 4

While keeping it selected, go to Effect > Warp > Arc. In the new dialogue window, adjust the options as you see in the image below:

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Step 5

Draw one more rectangle pretty close to this one:

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Step 6

While keeping it selected, go to Effect > Warp > Arc. In the new dialogue window, adjust the options:

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Step 7

Combine the two warped rectangles together. Just grab one rectangle and move to another while holding the left mouse button.

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Step 1

Using the Ellipse Tool (L), draw an ellipse.

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Step 2

Now, go to Effect > Warp > Arc and in the new window, adjust the options as you see in the image below:

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Step 3

Take your cactus shape & place it in the flower pot. For this press Control-X, Control-B.

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3. Create the Eyes

Step 1

We’re going to use the Ellipse Tool (L) again to draw an ellipse.

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Step 2

Add a small white circle. That’s the eye.

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Step 3

Create another copy of the eye by copying and pasting (Control-C, Control-V).

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Step 4

Now, let’s position the eyes where they belong.

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4. Create the Mouth

Step 1

Create a black ellipse. Then go to Effect > Warp > Arc and adjust the options:

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Step 2

Place the mouth between the eyes.

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Step 1

Delete the fill color and set the stroke color.

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Step 2

On the Stroke panel, adjust the settings:

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Step 3

Using the Line Segment Tool (/), draw in the prickles.

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6. Create the Flowers

Step 1

Take the Polygon Tool and click on your workspace. A new dialogue window will ask you how many sides and what radius you want. Make 6 Sides, and for the Radius, it doesn’t really matter—just not too big. Once you’re done, press OK.

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Step 2

Delete the stroke color and set the fill color, which you see in the image below:

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Step 3

To make the flower from it, go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Pucker & Bloat.

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Step 4

Using the Ellipse Tool (L) add a yellow circle in the middle of the flower.

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Make another copy of this flower (Control-C, Control-V) and place it on the cactus.

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7. Create the Background

Step 1

Using the Rectangle Tool (M), create a square that is 600 px in width and height.

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Step 2

Place this square behind everything (Control-X, Control-B). Voila! That’s it!

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You can download Adobe Illustrator and start your free trial now!

Check other Adoble Illustrator tutorials in the Adobe Illustrator section of my blog

Why You Should Use WordPress for your Blog

WordPress is, by far, the most popular open source CMS and it has a flexible and simple interface with thousands of plugins and templates. Learn how to create a website on WordPress in just 5 easy steps!

Why WordPress?

  • WordPress powers an astonishing 25% of all websites. It is a free website management tool that makes it very easy to create and update your own website
  • WordPress is not just for blogs. It has a massive plugin and theme ecosystem that enables you to make any type of website (ecommerce, social network etc.) without needing to know how to code. See live examples: www.wordpress.org/showcase
  • Plugin Ecosystem: Plugins allow you to easily add custom functions and features to your WordPress site. Find plugins in the WordPress Plugin Directory
  • Theme Ecosystem: A WordPress theme provides all of the front end styling of your WordPress site, like page layouts, fonts and colors. This makes it very easy to make a great looking site quickly even if you don’t know how to write code

Step 1 – Choose a Domain Name

First, follow these simple guidelines when choosing your domain name:

  • .Com: Go for “.com” extension as it’s easy to remember and trustworthy
  • Brandable: Make it distinct, easy to remember so that it rolls off the tongue
  • Length: Keep it less than 20 characters
  • Keywords: You don’t need to include keywords in your domain name but it is a good idea to have a name that suggests what your business is about e.g. Facebook, Dropbox etc.
  • Check availability: Use NameVine to check the availability of your domain name on all domains extensions and social networks

Step 2 – Domain Registration & Hosting Account

  • Domain Registration & Hosting Account. Get a free domain, 24/7 support and 60% off your hosting cost with Bluehost
  • Add Ons:I did not sign up for any of the extra web hosting services but review them and add where appropriate
  • ICANN verification: Required within 15 days of purchasing the domain or your domain may be suspended. Simply, verify your registered email address by clicking the link in the ICANN verification email you automatically receive
  • Support: Contact your domain registrar or hosting company to resolve any issues experienced during this set up process

Step 3 – Install WordPress

Then, login into your  hosting account (like Bluehost) and take these steps to install WordPress:

  • Click on your domain name to open up the cpanel (control panel)
  • Scroll down the page to the ‘CGI Scripts’ section. Click on the Install WordPress logo and wait for the new page to load
  • Create a WordPress account and click on ‘Install WordPress’
  • Log into WordPress using the username and password created in the previous step
  • You will now have access the the WordPress Dashboard. This is the backend of your website where you can edit your site and add content
  • To see what you site looks like click on your domain name at the top of the dashboard and then ‘visit site’

Step 4 – Add Pages/ Posts

  • Add Pages: Click Pages > Add New in the sidebar of your WordPress Dashboard. Click “change permalinks” and select “post name” to set the url by default to the post title.Set up these 2 pages to get started: “/about” + “/thank-you”.
  • Add Menus: Click Appearance > Menus > create a new menu. Select created pages and click “add to menu”. Select new menu as your “primary menu”.
  • Add Posts: Click Posts > Add New (the same process as creating new pages).

Step 5 – Install Google Analytics for WordPress

  • Install Plugin: Monster Insights for Google Analytics. Easy to use & free!
  • Login into Google Analytics. Go to Admin> Create a New Property to generate a tracking ID for your new website
  • Add tracking id to website. Click in ‘Authenticate with Google’ inside the plugin to start collecting data from your website
  • Filter Internal Traffic so you don’t skew your data: Click admin> filters>add filter>predefined filter> exclude traffic from IP address
  • Enable Demographics Reports: Collect age, demographics and interest data so you can understand you audience better. Click admin>property settings> enable demographics and interest reports
  • Goal Tracking: Set up goals – ex: track email sign ups

Check other posts about marketing in the Marketing section of my blog

Canva, an Amazing Tool to Create Quick Designs!

canva
With Canva, you can create beautiful designs in minutes — no design skills necessary. You just gotta have the vision, and Canva helps you bringing it to life. Turn imagination into a finished design in minutes with this amazing free website!

What is Canva?

Canva is an online graphic design platform that allows users to create social media graphics, presentations, posters and other visual content. Users can choose from many professional designed templates, and edit the designs and upload their own photos through a drag and drop interface.

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How to use Canva

1. Choose your design type

When you log in to Canva, you’ll land on the homepage. To start designing, click on ‘Create a design’ in the toolbar, or simply type your chosen design type into the search bar.

You can create the following design types:

Social Media

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Documents

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Personal

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Education

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Marketing

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Events

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Ads

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Canva has pre-set the ideal dimensions for each design type, whether you’re creating a logo, letterhead or Facebook post. You can also set custom dimensions by typing “custom” into the search box.

2. Choose and customize a template

Once you’ve chosen what kind of design you’d like to create, you’ll find yourself inside the Canva editor. This is where the magic happens! To help you get familiarized with the parts of the editor, here are its most basic parts:

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11Menu bar: this is the menu bar on the very top of the editor. From here, you’ll be able to access the features like Undo, Redo, Resize, Share, Download, Order prints, and others. You’ll also be able to see your design’s saving status from here.

22Side panel: this panel that appears on the side of the editor is where you’ll be able to access the templates and elements you can use in your design. It’s divided into 6 tabs dedicated to Templates, Images, Text, Uploads, Folders, and Apps.

33Canvas: at first, this is the blank white space occupying the majority of the editor. Consider this your main workspace since this is where you’ll work on your designs.

Templates are your shortcut to good design (you can also design from scratch, as you’ll later in this post, but templates are the best way to get started quickly). In the side panel you’ll see a range of templates that you can choose from – you can also search for a specific theme in the search bar. Every template is fully customizable, which means you can change the fonts, colors, images – everything! – to your tastes.

Click on a template to edit it. To change an element, click it and then edit it using the toolbar at the top of the editor – this is where you can change things like color, size, transparency, and more.

3. Publish your design

Once you’re happy with your design, it’s time to publish it. Click on the ‘Publish’ button in the menu bar and you’ll see a drop down list of all of your options.

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You can download, share to social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and LinkedIn, or even order professional prints delivered to your door. There are endless possibilities, so head here to read more about publishing your design.

Be careful with one thing: if your design has any premium items (pictures, fonts, etc), you’ll have to confirm the purchase before you are able to download your design without watermarks.


How to create designs from scratch in Canva

Canva’s free templates provide a shortcut to good design: they’re fully customizable, so you can change the colors, images and more to suit your taste. They have tens of thousands of templates for every design need. But sometimes you need something completely custom-made. How do you ensure what you create actually looks good?

1. Choose the right dimensions for your design

To begin, choose your design type from the Canva homepage. These are set to the optimal dimensions for each graphic, whether it’s a social media post, flyer or more. Or you can use custom dimensions by searching for “custom size”. You can choose from pixels, millimetres or inches.

2. Choose a background

The background for your design could be a color or an image.

Different colors tell different stories. For example, purple is associated with individuality, orange relates to activity, and green conjures images of nature. Think about what colors best suit your needs. For help choosing a color palette, try Canva’s Color Combinations tool.

To use a photo as a background, first add a grid. Once placed on a grid, photos can be resized, cropped, flipped and layered to create a variety of visual effects. Next, search for images or upload your own. Then, drag and drop your image onto the grid: it will snap to fit. You can add filters to change the brightness, saturation and clarity of the photo. This can help when layering text and elements.

3. Add your elements

Your design might include text, icons, photos or illustrations. These need to be combined in a way that is visually appealing.

Keep it simple. Don’t overload your design with too many elements, as it can confuse the visual message of the image. This is something designers call visual hierarchy, which involves the arrangement of elements according to their importance. Try playing with size, color, and placement in order to see what works best.

Harness the power of negative space. Negative space, also known as white space can be any area within a design that is free from text, images, or embellishments (it doesn’t have to actually be white). Designers love it because it can help create grouping, add emphasis and improve legibility.

4. Choose the right fonts

The look of your fonts can have a huge impact on your design. Choosing one font is hard enough. But your design may need more than one typeface. I suggest you never use more than two fonts in a design, as too many fonts tends to make a design look “messy”. You’ll want to choose complementary fonts, which add visual interest while working well together.

Canva has hundreds of pre-set font combinations to choose from. You can find these in the ‘Text’ tab, in the side panel.

Canva-Text-Tab

Or you can create your own combination. Again, simple is best: if you’re choosing an elaborate font, ensure you pair it with a simpler font so your design is balanced. Canva’s Font Combination tool can help, and Traditional combinations like a sans serif font and a serif font can be very powerful. Don’t forget about readability. If your fonts are too complicated, they can detract from your message.

Here’s a tip: typographic hierarchy establishes the order of importance given to different design elements. By applying different fonts, color and scale to your text, you can dramatically change the way your message is received.

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You don’t have to study for hundreds of hours to be good at design. But, like most things in life, you’ll get better with practice, so don’t be disheartened if your first design doesn’t turn out perfectly. Instead, keep practicing and keep creating. You’ll be creating brilliant, polished images in no time!


Final Notes

Canva revolves entirely around intuitive controls and editing elements on your canvas is almost a no-brainer. It wont replace Adobe Photoshop for everything, but it’s a good alternative for simple tasks!

While many Canva elements are completely free to use, most images you’ll see on search results are Premium, and will cost you $1 per image once you download your design. You can, however, easily upload you own photos or graphics, so you definitely can use it without the Premium paid version. You can find royalty-free images in websites like Unsplash and upload them to Canva.

In summary, Canva is an amazing tool for the clueless, and can come in handy for professionals too. The simplicity and richness of the tools will get you coming back for more every day – I personally use Canva to create all the designs related to this blog and its social media pages and it has made my life much easier. I just love it!


Check other posts about marketing in the Marketing section of my blog

Guerrilla Marketing and Inspiring Examples

Guerrilla Marketing
Guerrilla Marketing is an advertising strategy that focuses on low-cost unconventional marketing tactics that yield maximum results. This alternative advertising style relies heavily on unconventional marketing strategy, high energy and imagination!

What is Guerrilla Marketing?

Guerrilla Marketing is an advertising strategy style relies heavily on unconventional marketing strategy, high energy and imagination. Guerrilla marketing is about taking the consumer by surprise, make an indelible impression and create copious amounts of social buzz.

Guerrilla marketing is said to make a far more valuable impression with consumers in comparison to more traditional forms of advertising and marketing. This is due to the fact that most guerrilla marketing campaigns aim to strike the consumer at a more personal and memorable level.

Here are some of my favorite examples of guerrilla marketing campaigns:

Guerrilla marketing is often ideal for small businesses that need to reach a large audience without breaking the bank. It also is used by big companies in grassroots campaigns to compliment on-going mass media campaigns. Individuals have also adopted this marketing style as a way to find a job or more work.


If this is something that interests you, you can click on this link to see more examples of creative guerrilla marketing campaigns.

Check other posts about marketing in the Marketing section of my blog