As expert marketers, we spend our days preaching the importance of analytics, multi-channel strategies and audiences. We can tell you where to place each ad to reach your goals, how and where to properly allocate your budget, and so much more. But there is a huge piece of the puzzle that can make or break your strategy. That’s the creative.
Creative in marketing involves the unique ads that communicate a brands value and message in an original way. In virtually every marketing strategy, your dollar will go further if you can cut through the clutter with stellar creative, allowing a message to make an impact, leading to higher brand recognition and sales. It’s the secret weapon to outsmarting, rather than outspending, your competition.
In our more than 23 years of experience, we’ve noticed that poorly performing creative material often have:
• A lack of clear branding or identity for users to connect with and trust
• Poor photography or visual elements
• A lack of vibrancy, color and a focal point for the user’s eye
• Inadequate copy to explain the relevancy, meaning and value of the ad
Do you see how that would have trouble attracting your target audience? So, let’s take a look at some key traits we notice when optimizing high-performing artwork that you can adopt for your creative in the new year:
Those in the communication world have likely heard this before. It stands for “Keep It Simple, Stupid.” Simple and concise artwork is easier for the eye to absorb. Having clear space, easily legible text and a simple tagline can allow users to grasp the messaging of the ad faster and more easily. Having a simple element that adds direction to the ad can also help lead the users’ eye towards your call to action.
The colors, typography and imagery in your creative should capture the attention of your audience, reinforce your brand and convey the emotion you’re working to evoke. Choose a font that matches the effect you’re trying to achieve—for example, a classic serif font might suggest creativity or artistic expertise. Take note not to muddy up the creative with too many different colors and typefaces, making it hard to determine the message. Imagery should always complement rather than distract your audiences from your core message. And pay attention to photography – lighting, background distractions, shadows and strive for a natural look and feel.
Your marketing strategy likely involves more than one channel, therefore your creative must make sense when repurposed across multiple platforms. It should be easily distinguishable from normal web content, customized for the dimensions of the placement so your ad’s fundamental elements and call to action stand out. Plus, it should link to the next step in your sales funnel so those interested can quickly and easily learn more.
Creative’s primary goal is to evoke an emotion with your target audience however it can. Bold companies like to stretch the limits and thus reap the benefits of putting original ideas into action.
Yet a brand does not have to be overly eccentric or unusual to be effective. Just do not resist taking a chance on a creative idea when the opportunity arises. Remember, its primary goal is to evoke an emotion with your target audience however it can. Nearly all purchasing decisions — 90 percent, to be precise — are made subconsciously. When your customer sees your creative and feels that you understand them and their problem, your chances of making a sale go way up.
Whether you’re creating all new advertising material or refreshing your current look, keep in mind that expanding on “simple ideas” often leads to comprehensive and surprising results. And a little investment in creative when building your campaigns might just end up paying for itself many times over. If you’re ready to put additional marketing power behind your brand to reach your target audience, contact us today.