Creating Adverts That Sell: Stand Out from the Crowd
Good advert design leads to good dress sense.
It’s the weekend, so perhaps you’re going to a party. Or perhaps you’re off to the theatre, watching your favourite sports team play, or having a romantic dinner with your partner. How are you going to dress? How will you present yourself, what message do you want to convey and to whom? How do you want to be perceived? Loud and trendy? Suave? Parochial? Casual but smart, or cool and available?
How we present ourselves at work, amongst friends or at an event is an advertisement for who we want to make an impression with and how we want to be perceived. We can take a lot of time planning this form of communication, and your advert should not be any different.
In past articles, we’ve talked about the science behind advertising, the importance of headlines, your unique selling point and features & benefits, which are all massively important in creating an effective advert, but of little use if nobody notices your advert.
This article will focus on a few of the design elements to ensure your adverts no longer appear as noise:
If not THE most important thing, then the image would come in as a close second to the headline. An awesome picture makes all the difference. The image needs to be attention-grabbing and relevant to the product.
Advertising guru, the late David Ogilvy said, “On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.”
In a previous article what makes an effective advert I referred to a study that stated:
There is a 57% correlation between a strong ad headline and one’s intent to purchase – WOW!
White is wonderful. It allows your image or your headline to breath and standout. It’s pure and simple and has the effect of drawing the viewers’ attention to what’s important on the page.
Too often we are presented with an advert with multiple elements that compete for our eyes’ attention, meaning they don’t know what to focus on. This can come about through the use of multiple images, too much body text and not enough white space. Nothing breathes and we are left confused, disengaged and bored; the more distractions in the layout, the more likely we are to ignore and move on.
If you want to stand out, go large! You cannot expect, no matter how good the advert design, for small adverts to have the same cut through and impact as larger adverts. That’s not to say that you need to run full page adverts to get results, however in 20 years of publishing I can state without fear of contradiction that size has a significant impact on brand engagement and purchase intent.
At the start of this article, I used the example that dressing up is like advertising. You dress to make an impression and you dress to suit the intended audience. Same goes for your advert. For your advert to be noticed for all the right reason, in needs to be placed amongst the right audience. Sounds simple enough. Before you place your advert, make sure the media that you choose reaches your demographic in your local area. Make sure the placement of your advert is in a section that will attract your target audience and hopefully provides a halo effect (goodwill) towards your business, product or service. Get that right and your audience’s radar is on and ready to be engaged.
We’ve touched on a few things that will help your advert leap off the page. I’ll sign off with a simple test, the three-second rule. In three seconds, your advert needs to communicate what you do (in broad terms) and engage me! Follow the tips above and you’ll be on the right path.