Statistics reveal that we are exposed to more than 14,000 advertising messages daily and only 5 of them stick. We are bombarded and distracted. What makes us stop and pay attention? Good design.
Rambling, uninteresting text is like a poor presenter. If you've suffered to stay awake listening to a monotone speaker who never took a breath, you understand this concept completely. No matter how compelling the content, the message is lost if our attention is elsewhere.
Smart design quiets the visual "voices" and draws the consumer into your message.
However, content is useless unless the design is compelling enough to make them want to stop and read it.
White space, or the lack of an image, is just as important as the part of the design that has images or text. Space allows the reader to set their own pace.
In smart design, white space gives you the ability to guide the consumer through your message by placing more emphasis on the image that does exist.
So next time you're designing an Ad or Postcard or Billboard, remember that even though the cost-per-word does decrease as you cram more on the sheet, all value is lost if nobody reads them.
Don't make your font too small. Avoid light colors and distracting elements.
Your name, company and relevant contact information should be easy to read at arm's length. Don't make me get my readers out. It makes us both look bad.
Only include social icons if it is important to your company.
If you haven't secured your vanity URL ( ie: facebook.com/MarkitMotion ) then a Facebook icon is unhelpful. Facebook thanks you for the advertising though. You must list the full URL if you can't be found by name.
Unless you have a purpose for showcasing your social presence, leave it off your card. If you don't manage your social sites, it's like inviting someone to your house when you're out of town.
Your business Card is not a brochure. Decide what's important first, before you design your business card.
Do you need your address if no one ever comes to your business?
Do you use a fax anymore?
Is your logo the same as on your website or store front? Policing your brand is crucial to building trust. Be sure your logo is consistent and clear.
Don't forget about the back of your card. This is a great place to share your brand message or logo. Reinforce a promise or give directions.
If you are considering taking a step towards social awareness in 2013, eco-friendly products are a fantastic place to start.
While organic cotton is the preferred crop for many manufacturers, bamboo, soy, hemp and corn are growing in the eco-friendly movement. Here's a basic explanation of each.
Organic Cotton The difference between organic cotton and standard cotton is that organic cotton is grown without the use of pesticides or chemical additives in soil that has been chemical free for at least three years.
Bamboo Bamboo is extra-soft and very durable, breathable, UV resistant and antimicrobial. It feels like a cross between cashmere and silk. Bamboo requires no pesticides to grow, and is one of the fastest-growing plants in the world.
Soy Soy fabrics are soft and smooth and contain natural antibacterial agents. Soy has the same moisture-absorption properties as cotton, but with better moisture transmission, for drier, more comfortable garments.
Hemp Three times stronger than cotton and easy to grow, hemp doesn't require fertilizer or pesticides. It's also antimicrobial, UV resistant and breathable. It's not as soft as cotton, but in a blend it can add durability to a garment.
Corn Corn-based fabric has excellent moisture-wicking properties, UV resistance and low odor retention. It's also stain resistant, experiences minimal shrinkage and pilling, and is biodegradable and compostable.
Your designer has put together a masterpiece that captures the essence of your company and conveys your message flawlessly.
Your printer has masterfully executed this project by laying down the best layers of ink that would make Picasso shed a tear.
Throughout the project you've managed the costs and come in under budget. Perfect! Until the job arrives at the mail house and you find out your postage costs exceed the budget for your entire piece.
5 Tips to Save Big at the Post Office.
Planning ahead can save you the most. Standard Rate vs. First Class can cut postage by almost 40%. The delivery speed can be slower but unless your message is dated, this is the way to go.
Postage increases as the dimensions of the mailer grow. Talk to your mail house before you design to understand the rates. We've seen a $10,000 decrease in postage for a single project by cutting 1/4" off of the length.
First Class postage increases when the weight exceeds one ounce. Standard rates are more flexible, allowing for 3.3 ounces before the rate increases.
The post office rewards you by decreasing the postage amount if your mail house does the sorting for them. You can save 15 - 20% in postage by presorting.
Mailing a piece that can be fully automated at the post office can save you a few cents as well. Definitely run the design past your mail house before you print because this part gets very technical with proper folds and tabs for self-mailers. If you include your mail house in the design of your project, you'll have a better chance of realizing these savings. If you wait until after the project is designed and printed, it may be too late.