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Ads and What it Takes to Develop a Winner

     -     Jun 24th, 2015   -     Creative Design   -     0 Comments

As the marketer for your CPA firm surely you are well aware that advertising your firm’s brand and services is required in order for your firm to grow. This is the single, most important objective of advertising – to increase the opportunity for success. Without advertising, your firm may as well not even exist in your industry. If sales are what you seek, you must continuously market to your clients as well as your prospective customers. While this objective is important, it’s just part of the advertising process. It’s key to produce marketing materials such as great ads that are effective in attracting and capturing your existing and potential audience while continuing to build brand awareness. Think of it this way, advertising is like driving a car. You have to use a lot of gas to get up to speed but once you reach full potential you can cruise.

Recently, one of FlashPoint’s clients – Peterson Sullivan – was awarded top honors at the AAM-MAA awards gala in Orlando for the category of “Best Single Ad”. Peterson Sullivan is a Seattle-based firm. Since the Seahawks were in the SuperBowl, the client desired to run a print ad that would appear in the SuperBowl edition of the Puget Sound Business Journal. The ad was concepted, written and designed by the creative department of FlashPoint. You can see the ad below. Using this ad as a case study, FlashPoint has provided a few tips on how award-winning ads are created.

Design Tip 1: Have a Message in Mind

Having a clear message in mind is imperative when making print ad designs that are effective. In this case, FlashPoint knew that Peterson Sullivan wanted to tie their firm to the SuperBowl and the buzz going on in Seattle at the time of the print run. Therefore, considering the message you want to share and how you plan to convey it once you are ready to move forward is essential in developing a concept. It helps to brainstorm the sole message and purpose of each individual print ad you have in mind and what you hope the reader or potential customer takes away from them.

Design Tip 2: Use an Updated Logo

Use an updated and visually-appealing logo that is modern, relevant and suitable for any audience or demographic you are trying to reach. Working with an experienced creative firm is a great way to ensure your ads are visually top-notch and set up appropriately for print production. Having an updated logo is not only a way to stand out as a modern brand, but it is also a way for others to easily remember your brand and what it represents once they are familiarized with your products, services or the content you have available. In the case of the SuperBowl ad, the Peterson Sullivan logo is sleek, clean-lined and modern.

Design Tip 3: Use Appropriate Colors

Selecting the right color palette for your advertising also matters when building a branded ad. Usually clients have colors that are branded to their firm by means of a style guide, therefore streamlining your design by using these colors is a great way to quickly gain traction with any campaign you have in mind to launch. Since the SuperBowl ad utilized the coveted 12th Man flag which happens to be blue and is also a secondary brand color to Peterson Sullivan’s corporate orange and gray, the print ad worked and had the appropriate visual flow and balance.

Design Tip 4: Typography Matters

When it comes to typography, choosing the right font also matters, especially if you are looking to make an impact with a specific message you are sharing. Finding the right font for your print ad can be done by comparing various fonts and choosing one that is most legible and offers the appropriate personality and tone for your visuals. It is also important to consider that using typography that is branded to your firm (think style guide) may be required as was the case in the Peterson Sullivan SuperBowl ad. An additional thought is assuming your firm’s logo is up to date as mentioned in Tip 2 above, utilizing fonts in your ad that were used to create that logo will also establish cohesiveness which is also important.

Design Tip 5: Relate to Your Audience

Ensure your advertisement is able to relate to the audience or demographic you are trying to reach. It is critical to create ads in locations where they are relevant to individuals who may have a genuine interest in your brand and/or the services you have to offer. The Peterson Sullivan ad was designed to be very broad reaching since it was a direct tie-in to the Seattle Seahawks and the 12th Man flag. It is possible though to create ads that are much more niche-specific. A great example of that can be seen below in another ad that was created for Peterson Sullivan. The was created for a Women’s Summit Conference booklet and honored women who lead in the workforce.

When you are armed with knowledge of your industry, market and audience, know your product or service’s most important benefits, you’ll be ready to create an effective ad or ad campaign. Remember that developing a successful ad is not a one-size fits all activity. It is both art and concept, and the method of creating is not the same for every firm.

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If you are struggling with creating ads or ad campaigns for your firm, talk to us. We can help.


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