Social Media Safe Zones
By Katelyn Lugo
As social media platforms consistently add new organic & advertising placements beyond the main feed, creative teams must keep in mind the “safe zones” of those placements. A safe zone is the area of the creative where the most important parts of your messaging should be placed, such as text or imagery, so that it does not overlap with the automatically placed elements of that placement. Taking safe zones into consideration ensures your creative is optimized for that placement and looks as good as it can!
Safe zones vary from platform to platform and only apply to placements that have automatically placed elements that cannot be moved. Though safe zones vary across platforms, there are similarities in where the most important pieces should be placed. The same creative can be optimized and used across all platforms if creators consider each platforms’ safe zones that they want the creative to be on.
Meta Safe Zones- Facebook & Instagram
Safe zones on Meta apply to the Stories and Reels placements. Though the safe zones and automatically placed elements differ slightly across Facebook and Instagram, creators can place the most important messaging in the middle of the creative (keeping in mind the automatically placed elements on the bottom right of Reels) and that same creative will work across both placements and platforms.
Meta offers an Ads Guide to help creators follow best practices for each advertising placement across Facebook & Instagram that’s kept up to date considering the platform changes quite often.
TikTok Safe Zones
Safe zones on TikTok apply to all their placements as the platform mainly uses vertical creative. Safe zones are similar to Meta’s Reels placement, making it simple to optimize creative to use across all three platforms. TikTok offers downloadable safe zone templates to help with creative development, such as:
TikTok also offers a preview resource where creators can upload their videos to see if it follows best practices. The tool offers recommendations to make the creative fit the platform better as well.
Snapchat Safe Zones
Similar to TikTok, Snapchat uses mainly vertical creative so safe zones (also called “buffer zones” by Snapchat) apply to all placements. We’ve covered the two main placements below, however there are more placements with different buffer zones to take into consideration if your creative will serve there.
“Single Image or Video Specifications: To prevent overlap with the following elements, Snapchat suggests avoiding placement of logos or other graphic elements within (1) 150px from the top and bottom of creative and (2) 5% of the left and right sides of the creative.”
“Story Ad Specifications: Please account for a 175 px ‘buffer zone’ at the top of the image. This is to ensure your logo does not conflict with any important image elements on the vertical tile.”
Safe zones across social media platforms change often as these companies test different elements. Be sure to research safe zones prior to beginning the creative process to ensure your creative is optimized for all platforms where it will serve. Keeping safe zones in mind fosters a seamless user experience and ensures you’re following current best practices of each platform, ultimately helping your ads perform as successfully as possible.