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Why Custom Design in Print Advertising is more important than ever.

Wednesday, June 26 2013 8:22 AM
By Kalen Kubik

Print has dwindled. Newspapers have established online identities for up-to-the-minute reporting. Books are now being read on Kindles or listened too via Audible. The print experience is now reserved for school books and cheap advertising.

The Print Overload Issue in a Digital Culture

Where it was once used to record precious information to foster the next generation, print is seen as clutter and harmful to the environment. If a sales flyer is in my mailbox it aggravates me that I cannot delete into non-existence where it won't end up in a dump. Poorly printed, poorly designed advertisements plague us daily. The few pieces that we remember are the well designed ones.

Creating a well designed piece.

Humans need tangible items to call their own. That is why no matter how many BitCoin-esque companies surface, there will always be a desire for a currency that I can hold in my hand. We need something solid and a print piece provides that. Psychologically, possessing something triggers an attachment to a thing. Just like Golem in Lord of the Rings, we want a consumer to think our advertisement precious. That is never going to happen however, so we must settle on just getting them to actually read the print ad.

Good design makes people want to read an ad. You will never find an innovative company using a templated design. Our minds remember pattern. That is how we're able to remember faces. Our mind knows what poorly designed print advertisement looks like. Think of a typical ad in your mind. Lots of bold colors thrown together, thick yellow fonts outlined in black and a massive sales pitch squashed together on the cheapest paper possible. What would you think Apple would put out for their print ad? Probably a subtle gradient gray background, their product nicely cutout and a small thin san-serif font with just the products name.

Which one is more appealing? The grey one.

Which one would get your attention because it is different? The grey one.

Remember that you are not selling a product or a service but an idea.

Art is a form of communication where someone can stare at a painting and take away their own interpretation. Unfortunately, they're not going to read your bulleted list of services and think about all the time you'd save them, they're just going to pitch it. If you tell them about your service, all their going to think about is price. If you promise them more time with their family, that is invaluable and worth every penny.

If you're a service company, you're giving a dad more time with his kids.

If you're selling a computer, you're giving a mom the ability to talk to her daughter in college.

These ideas probably sound familiar. You've seen them used before. These are the ones you remember because they're not hawking their wares or being pushy. They're making you come to them. This needs to be your approach if you hope to stand out. To sell this idea, it needs to be well executed, meaning crisp pictures, well-suited text and less sales-pitch.


By Kalen Kubik

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