Creating a great print ad is not just assembling a layout with a headline, photo, some copy and a logo, but is an orchestrated sequence of factors and functions designed to meet a strategic objective.
Building an ad is like building a house. First you have to determine the location, then what size and features you want, and last the style and colors. You will need an Architect to engineer the dwelling and assure that the structure will be sound and meets building codes, before any construction begins. Then, a competent general contractor can erect the home, directing subcontractors who will be engaged for their specialties.
So how does this all relate to building a print ad? Well let’s start with the real estate, which is the media, or where the ad will appear. It is understandable that building in an exclusive, well-to-do neighborhood will be pricier then building in a low-rent district. The same holds true with print media. You can buy into an upscale magazine or go with a cheaper newsprint throwaway. The neighborhood will determine what you put there. A quality publication attracts quality readers and deserves a quality ad. You would not erect a one-room cabin on a prime lot, no more than you would place a poorly designed, unprofessional ad in a prestigious magazine. The quality and cost of the ad will be determined where it will be placed.
A Marketing Consultant lays out the plans for the development of ads like the Architect designs homes. Creative construction can only begin after marketing objectives, parameters and a strategy have been determined. So both the Architect and the Marketing Consultant are essential in the planning stage. A naive advertiser, going to a graphic designer to build their ad, is like a property owner going to a handyman to build their home, skipping the architect. Or worse, having the media assemble the ad, is like putting the real estate agent in charge of building your home. Perhaps some think they can save money this way, when they are taking a huge risk of coming up with something that will occupy the space, but is inadequate and not stand up. Graphic designers do nice looking artwork and publishers print magazines but only the Marketing Consultant is vested in producing ads that are engineered to produce sales response for the client. Don’t be enamored with colors and design when strategy is essential.
Once a marketing consultant (the architect of advertising) has established the strategy, the production, or building of the advertisement campaign, can be begin. All factors must be capitalized on like; continuity of the corporate image or theme, target market profile, media demographics, current motivational factors and implementation of a unique creative appeal and sales message. Engaging the services of a Marketing Consultant is essential in assuring great ads that produce results!