Southeastern District Lutheran Church Missouri Synod
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Blog: Communicating Digitally

Sed Webinar

Led by Hannah Gillrup – District Communications Director

Branding tips and Canva Training to help you communicate in new, engaging, and effective ways


Hannah began speaking of the importance of clear communication in their ministry and highlighted the role of Canva in maintaining a consistent message across platforms. Hannah also mentioned that those without a Canva account could sign up for a free premium account for nonprofits. The discussion emphasized the importance of consistent communication and the role of a communications person in ensuring this consistency, aligning with the church’s mission and vision. Hannah highlighted the role of Canva for design work and the importance of branding within the tool to maintain a consistent church identity.

Church Logo and Branding Challenges

We discussed the difficulty of creating a logo for a church and suggested a simpler approach, such as using the church’s name. She emphasized the importance of colors and fonts in church branding, recommending picking 2 or 3 colors for consistency and using them in different shades. She also recommended using a curved aspect and balancing light and dark colors and suggested using a seasonal font for special events. Hannah also stressed the importance of consistent branding in visual communication, particularly when it comes to fonts, colors, and shapes.

Canva for Consistent Church Communication

We emphasized the importance of consistent communication within a team to maintain brand identity across various communication channels. Hannah highlighted the use of Canva, a design tool, to create content that aligns with the church’s identity. She also mentioned the possibility of involving other leaders in the process of deciding on a brand.

Consistent Branding Across Platforms

Hannah discussed the importance of consistent branding across various platforms, including web pages, bulletin boards, and emails. She emphasized the value of using templates to save time and ensure a unified look, while also encouraging the creation of unique content within these templates. Hannah also explained how to use Canva for email headers and web page design, and emphasized the importance of regularly updating web pages with new information. She wrapped up the discussion by showing how to access and utilize the brand kit in Canva.

Media Creation Tools and Templates Demonstration

Hannah discussed the various templates and tools available for creating different types of media such as flyers, presentations, and Instagram posts. She emphasized the importance of using templates as a starting point and suggested that users can customize them to fit their needs. She also demonstrated how to use the search bar to find specific templates, how to edit the color and size of elements within a template, and how to replace images. Hannah stressed the importance of using only approved images from the platform to avoid copyright issues and low-quality images you might find on Google.

Canva Image Editing and Design Elements Demonstration

Hannah demonstrated how to edit and manipulate images using Canva, emphasizing the importance of using templates, maintaining consistency in design elements, and making efficient use of the ‘Magic Switch’ feature for resizing images for different platforms. She also discussed the use of different design elements such as fonts, images, videos, shapes, and frames, and how to save and organize these elements for future use. Furthermore, she clarified that any graphics program can be used to create designs, which can then be uploaded to a website such as WordPress.

Canva Image Editing and Consistency

Hannah discussed the use of Canva for editing and enhancing images, emphasizing the importance of maintaining consistency and polish in the visual presentation of a nonprofit’s content. She demonstrated how to use the platform’s tools to remove backgrounds, adjust brightness, and apply filters to images, as well as how to download images with specific characteristics like rounded corners. Hannah also mentioned the option to use Canva templates for creating designs and the opportunity to involve youth in these tasks. She encouraged attendees to experiment with the platform’s features and to download their work in the appropriate file format for different purposes.

Social Media Calendar and Management

Hannah discussed the creation of a social media calendar for the church and the sharing of content among congregations. She emphasized the importance of consistency in posts and the need for team decisions about who can post. She also talked about the use of Canva for designing and sharing content, and the potential for multiple people to access and work on the same account. However, she noted that each additional person would incur an extra charge. Hannah also addressed the issue of managing member posts on Facebook, suggesting that any inappropriate or off-topic posts should be hidden and discussed with the member. She highlighted the importance of maintaining the church’s brand and avoiding any political or other inappropriate content.

Canva vs. Google Images for Publication Design

Hannah Gillrup discussed the advantages of using Canva over Google images for publications and social media posts. She emphasized the flexibility and quality of images created with Canva, demonstrated how to edit images, and shared successful examples of using Canva. She advised against cramming too much information onto an image and highlighted the importance of proper sizing and alignment. Hannah also discussed the issue of white lines appearing at the top of images due to incorrect positioning and the importance of clear and concise captions.

When smartphones entered the game of technology so did all of their fancy apps, so the church sought how to utilize this new fancy tech for their ministry. I’ve included a video that I find extremely helpful in discovering what it means to invest in an app for your church. To sum the video up – save your money, and invest in your website.