Effective print ads stop the reader from turning the page and tell what the product will do for the customer. You must stop the reader’s eye in less than a second, and hold it for at least three seconds to make an impression. Here are a few basic design points to keep in mind when creating a newspaper ad:
- Always stress the benefits. Always advertise the benefits to the consumer of the product or service that you are advertising, not the features. Answer the reader’s most basic question: “What’s in it for me?”
- Include a call to action. Use words such as “Call now,” “Visit our Web site,” or “Bring in this coupon.” Use short phrases with action words.
- Use white space effectively. Large areas of black or white catch the eye – use minimal text on larger black or white backgrounds for black and white ads.
- Use color. Color ads draw 60 percent more in-depth reading than black and white and 40 percent more than spot color.
- Feature a dominant element. Showcase a product or a logo. Put a logo and contact information in bottom right corner as this is the best placement to catch a reader’s eye.
- Limit your fonts. In order to give your ad a clean look, never use more than three fonts in your ad.
To create a strong print ad, you must use the basic principles of design; however, always keep in mind that an ad can only be as good as the offer it is showcasing.