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  • Writer's pictureJanet Federico

Meta Business Suite vs. Canva vs Adobe Express


Meta, Canva, and Adobe Express Logo

As my business has grown, posting to social media has become more and more unmanageable. I have multiple platforms that I am managing but I only want to use one tool for posting. I also don’t want to add any more subscription plans to what I have going on. This limits me to three choices: Meta for Business, Canva, and Adobe Express. Below, I explore the pros and cons of each as I tried them out for use in my art practice. This isn’t meant to be an exhaustive list of the features of each software. Just what I found as I tried them out. I’m going to attempt an apples-to-apples comparison for you here.

I had a few basic requirements that the software had to meet. They were:

  1. Able to post to multiple channels

  2. Able to schedule posts at least 30 days in advance

  3. Able to post multiple photos in a single post.

with this in mind, I began with Meta.

Meta Business Suite

I had actually been using Meta for a few years but not with any regularity. I opened my Meta Business Account back in 2020 and just kind of had it hanging out there. Once I began to use social media more seriously, I decided to put it to use.


Multiple Channels

Meta limits you to posting to Instagram and Facebook. This makes sense since those are the two platforms they own. This worked well for me initially as I was only concerned with maintaining these two platforms. However, once I wanted to go beyond these two platforms and add in Pinterest and LinkedIn, it immediately became a problem which is why I began looking for another solution to begin with.


Post Scheduling

Meta allows you to schedule out 29 days in advance. For the most part, this is totally fine, however, sometimes, like with these blog posts, I want to schedule out much further than that. I’m currently scheduling these posts over eight weeks in advance. With Meta, that’s a no-go.


Multiple assets

Facebook allows you to add and edit multiple assets at once. It governs proportion and sizing and makes sure your images will work on your chosen platform. If they don’t, the edit feature allows you to apply changes to a group of assets with a single click. All in all, this is very helpful.


Active Times

An additional feature Meta gives you is “Active Times” where it uses its built-in analytics to let you know exactly when your followers are most active and engaging with your content. This data is also fluid and updates as your followers change their habits. For a small brand like me who is trying to maximize return, this is very helpful. That said, this feature only goes about a week into the future.


Multiple Channels in One Click

I also wanted to be able to create one post and schedule it for all my channels with one click. For the two channels you’re allowed to post to, Meta does this. You can even schedule different days and times for the different channels.


Saved hashtags

If you are using the app version of Meta, you can save hashtag groups to apply to your posts. For instance, if, like me, you have a group of hashtags for patterns and a different group for illustrations, you can group and save them. Sadly, however, as of this writing Meta has discontinued this feature in its web application. I primarily used the web app for all my content creation so this was a huge pain in the ass when they dropped that feature. I had to recreate my hashtag groups in the Excel file that I use for content planning.


Story and Reel Creation

Meta has the capability to create posts for stories and reels in addition to standard posts. I don’t do this often but it’s definitely a nice to have.

Pros

Cons

Native integration with Facebook and Instagram Can schedule channels individually in a single post Allows multiple assets to be attached to a post Can create reels and stories in addition to standard posts Provides audience analytics Can save hashtags (mobile app only)

Can only schedule 29 days in advance No saved hashtags in web app Only two channels for posting


Canva

I’ve been a Canva user for many years. It’s a great source of inspiration to me when I’m stuck on a layout or find myself in a design rut. When it became clear that Meta wasn’t going to work out for me, I tried Canva first. Be aware that this is part of their paid subscription. I already had that, so it wasn’t an add-on in that sense.


Multiple Channels

Canva can post to multiple channels. It hits all the big ones: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest along with several others.


Post Scheduling

Canva lets you schedule your posts months in advance. I tried to figure out if there was a cutoff, but I couldn’t find anything in their documentation and nothing presented itself in the software either.


I was excited when I realized that Canva might solve my issues. I already had all of my created posts in Meta but decided I’d use Canva the next month for testing the platform. I quickly realized this was not going to work for me at all.


Canva supports multiple channels but you cannot schedule them all using a single post. You must create a new post for each channel you want to post to. Additionally, it doesn’t appear to reuse the same asset but rather creates a duplicate asset for the next channel. This quickly blew up my Canva design library with multiple copies of the same post. If there was a way to avoid this, I didn’t find it.


Multiple assets

Canva doesn’t let you add multiple assets to a post. In addition, you are restricted to using content created on their platform, e.g., you can’t open a new post, add a photo, and keep it pushing. You’ll have to drop that photo into a Canva design first and then add it to your post. At the very least, if there is a way to do this, I never found it, and I looked.


Story and Reel Creation

Canva has the capability to create posts for stories and reels in addition to standard posts.


Other Cool Features

Obviously, you have the entire suite of features from Canva available to you. If this is where you are creating most of your posts, then it’s great. You can create all sorts of post types and schedule them directly from the software.

Pros

Cons

Integration with many channels Can schedule channels beyond one month out Can create reels and stories in addition to standard posts Provides audience analytics

Can only schedule a single asset Can only schedule a single channel per post Duplicates design assets No saved hashtags


Adobe Express

I didn’t know what Adobe Express was when I began this journey. I had the Creative Cloud suite and saw it was an option but hadn’t explored it. Then, I randomly saw a post in one of my design groups from someone who used the product rather than Canva. As I mentioned, I’ve been wanting to consolidate my subscription dollars recently, so I decided to give it a whirl.


Multiple Channels

Adobe allows you to schedule to all major channels. Canva actually has more available channels, but Express has all the ones that I need and I noticed that TikTok was just added prior to posting this.


Post Scheduling

Express allows you to use a single post to schedule to all selected channels. Like Canva, if there’s a limit to how far in advance you can schedule, I can’t find it. The main drawback here is that scheduling different days and times per channel isn’t supported, so they are all going to get the same day and time. For me, this means that I schedule the post according to my timings for Instagram since it’s my primary channel and then have to go update the timings on my other posts.


Another drawback here is that if you change your mind about a channel or want to add one after you save the post initially, it’s a no-go.


Multiple assets

Express allows you to post multiple assets and even allows you to pass through photographs without any need to make them Express assets first. This is good for Facebook and other more flexible platforms but can get you into trouble with Instagram which has strict proportion requirements.


Story and Reel Creation

Express has the capability to create posts for stories and reels in addition to standard posts.


Other Cool Features

Express has pretty slick integration with other Adobe products like Photoshop and Illustrator. Since I’m creating more and more of my patterns in these products, that’s a huge help for me. Additionally, your assets can be added as linked files so any changes you make inside Photoshop or Illustrator will be reflected in Express.


Express also lets you create all different types of content and you have the power of Adobe at your fingertips. The premium version gives you full access to the Adobe Stock library. And one last feature for cool points, Express is connected into Wix where I host my website.

Pros

Cons

Integration with major social platforms Can schedule multiple channels in a single post Allows multiple assets to be attached to a post Can create reels and stories in addition to standard posts Native integration with Photoshop and Illustrator

No saved hashtags Can’t schedule individual timings for channels at posting No audience analytics


Conclusion: Adobe Express with Analytics from Meta

I wish Express solved all my problems but it doesn’t. It solves the major ones though. I still have to go back to Meta to see my analytics, but that is a small thing compared to using multiple apps to get to all of my channels. I’ve been using it for over a month and am very happy.


 

Janet Federico, MBA, MFA is a licensed artist, award-winning author, and speaker from Washington, DC now based in the Midwest. Her art has been exhibited at the Wichita Art Museum, the Wilson K. Cadman Art Gallery, City Arts, and InterUrban Art House. Janet’s writing has been featured in Elephant Journal, Writer’s Digest, and The Mighty. Want more? Get Janet in your inbox.

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