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Designing Banners …A Thought Process

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Is it a Child’s play or Prodigy? Or something else…

A mere look is not sufficient to make someone fall for you, and make them do exactly what you want them to. Can’t be a child’s play, so what it is then? A Prodigy! No.
In Designing Banners for advertisements there is nothing like child’s play or prodigy. Everything which is done is done after a well processed research. Designing banner for advertisement is a big challenge in itself because unlike website designing, it has limited space. Within this space and limited text one has to communicate to its audience and convince them to click the banner, at least, if not buy the product.

Advertisements are the quick and most successful way to promote, spread and make company’s brand name and ultimately earn ROI though it is not as simple as it sound. A company wants to be known by their name and it is a must too.

Few tips which should be taken care of while designing an advertisement and also placing it.

  1. Branding: – It would be very nice if you keep some logo or text which represent your company in front of your target audience. The benefit of picking a logo, term or a design is that it distinguishes you from other players in the industry and helps you in creating your own market. The very first thing which must be kept in mind while designing a banner for advertisement is mentioning and highlighting the brand name or symbol. It will be of no use and indeed very stupid if you decorate the whole banner with all glittering colors, but forget to mention the name of the company.
  2. Hook: – A banner placed anywhere always has an objective of incurring sales. So never forget to keep a hook in your banner. But be careful, it shouldn’t create a dubious picture of your brand. Make it subtle like 50% discount, Christmas Offer, Free Sign-Up etc.
  3. Logical Reading Order: – Design your banner systematically. Don’t create a scene of hotchpotch in your banner. The most advisable and logical order to fill in formation is:-
    • Name of the brand, followed by logo.
    • Place a hook (any discount, scheme or any other thing which can attract the target audience).
    • Place your call to action.
  4. Call to Action: – After you have followed 1st and 2nd step in designing your ad banner, now it’s time to tell your user ‘what to do now’. There must be some call of action which you want your target customer to do. You can place a button with certain short but explanatory text. For ex: ‘Click Now’, ‘Free Sign-Up’, ‘Buy Now’ or ‘Download’, so that your sole objective behind advertisement can be achieved.
  5. Color Combination: – This is something which only a web designer can do and must do. This needs proactive ness and creativity. Designers can make an ad banner eye catching and attractive by their skills and depth of creativity. Good designs for sure attract people, irrespective of their interest in product or service offered in the banner.
  6. Design to Stand Out: – It is obvious that your ad banner will be accompanied by many others and most of them will be your competitors (competitors’) only. The grid where all the banners would be placed will offer same size to all for placing their ads, so how are you going to make a difference? Along with using some bright eye catching colors and designs, you can also try some irregular but interesting shapes within the proposed space. This may attract the attention of the visitors, but beware before doing this. If it is not done properly then it could subject to mockery of the brand.
  7. Strategically Placed Ad Banners: Strategically Placed ad banners got the large probability of diverting large traffic volume to your site than randomly placed ads. The site or the space where you are placing your ad must be researched very carefully. To make out the maximum benefit of the limited space in the banners, companies use jargons, abbreviation or short forms to communicate to their audience. These jargons or lingoes do fine if they are used in thematic sites but what about new avenues where people are totally unaware? For ex: – A company who does PSD to XHTML put ‘slicer’ word in their ad which is very much common in web designing industry. If they put their ad with this jargon in some place other than web designing, then it is likely to convey some other meaning. Possibly people will think that the site related to food or kitchen.

Designing has become more of a research work along with being creative. So next time whenever you go for any designing project (may it be designing web site, banner, logo etc.) if it is a company then probe for its Design Research Team or if you are approaching to a freelancer then you better do all the required research and provide him all the needed ingredients.

Varun Bhagat is a technology geek and works in PixelCrayons as a Sr. Technology Consultant. He possesses in-depth knowledge of different web development technology and helps our clients to choose the best technology as per their needs.

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  • Ja

    Made my day once again, great post..two thumbs up!:)

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  • Zephyr09

    A nice to do list before placing and designing an ad. The list displays many imp. points/steps which many of us forget to obey while the process is on. The most imp. step which o have seen many banners are lacking of is CALL TO ACTION.

    Well indeed a nice effort. Hope more like this will come.

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  • Also, design for the other sizes. 300×250 is one thing , but transforming and keeping the design to the other 728×90, 160×600, 468×60 and even the 120×60, I hate those. Best practices seem to leave the call to action and headline, a short headline, (you will always need to fight the client on this one) up at all times. People scan the web too quick to get to a punch line. A great headline example would be large $129 savings. See some of my examples.