How attractive is your design?
We are all partial to pretty things. People, products, pictures or pets - everybody is attracted to attractive stuff - hence the word "attracted". This, for designers, means that every ad, brochure, poster or website has to look attractive. Which makes sense.
However, the world happens to be full of ads, brochures, posters and websites, and they're all competing with each other for the consumers' attention. This, of course, means that people are bombarded by attractiveness (or attempted attractiveness, at least). If an ad, brochure, poster or website is to stand out from this barrage, the designer must ensure that it is extra attractive or, as I like to call it - superttractive (my word, feel free to slip it into everyday conversation).
Bear in mind, even before the consumer has the inclination, time or desire to discover the content of the ad, brochure, poster or website, they first need to notice it. Unless you've got them cornered in a bank queue, church or other sheltered spot free from marketing collateral, your challenge is to get the consumer to notice your marketing communication long before they will actually see it, absorb it, or act upon it. That is where the skill of the graphic designer is.
The skill of the graphic designer is in transforming the communication goal of a product, company or campaign, into a superttractive visual, emotional and informative message (that's right - my word again). And the skill of a talented designer lies in choosing which of those three attributes is the most important, and conveying it in the best way. There's only one answer and it doesn't matter what the brief is, the most important attribute of any design in any format is emotion.
Attractive things are that way because of the emotion they invoke in people, whether it's lust, love, surprise, happiness, anger or jealousy. In order to make a communication noticeable and memorable, it needs to attach itself to an emotion of some sort - any sort. That's why funny designs, shocking designs, beautiful designs and unusual designs work. Consumers attach an emotion to them when they see them for the first time, and that emotional attachment is what provides the recall for that ad, brochure, poster or website later on.
The next time you're briefed on a project, before you consider the layout, the photos, the illustrations or fonts that you would like to use, think about the emotion that you would like to convey. If you're focused on that throughout the project, and are able to convey that emotion through your design, then your ad, poster, brochure or website will be far more superttractive than most others.
About the author
Damon Freeman is the Design Director of Brand inc Sport, a dedicated sports design and advertising division of the Brand inc Creative Group ([[www.brandinc.co.za]]). He has ten years experience in sports-related advertising and design, and is passionate about marketing, design, sport and his family, in reverse order.
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The Brand inc Creative Group is a full-service marketing and communications agency, specialising in world-class design and advertising, with a particular emphasis on sport-related brands. Originally formed as a small design agency in 2003, Brand inc has grown steadily over the years, and now boasts over 80 local and international clients across many industries. The group is made up of 3 distinct divisions, namely Brand inc Create, Brand inc Sport and Brand inc Comm, each serving a particular niche or industry.- more....