Archive for the ‘Designing’ Category

Renew, Refresh, Rejuvenate: Redesigning Your Ads

March 19, 2010

When is it time to consider a redesign of your company’s advertising material? Some may answer, “When its effectiveness drops” or “When the competition does” or “When we hire a new marketing director”. We agree that these are good reasons, but we also would add that periodic redesign should be part of your regular advertising cycle. A good redesign will refresh your ads, and renew them for your loyal customers and your prospects alike.

Your company’s advertising material may need a redesign if any of these conditions exist:

•It has been more than five years since you first developed the advertising material.

•Your company today is much different than it was when the advertising material was developed.

•The target audience for your product or service has changed since the advertising material was developed.

Your advertising material may also show signs of aging; i.e., its typeface, the layout, or the color palette.

Let Me Illustrate My Point: Choosing and Using Clip Art

March 18, 2010

Think back to the last time you bought something that needed assembly. Likely the instructions included drawings or illustrations to help you understand what the words were saying. In fact, the drawings may have been all you needed to complete the assembly. This is the power of illustrations that accompany what we read. Our comprehension rises dramatically when we also have something to look at.

When designing a brochure or flyer for your company, or when creating a newsletter, you can use this fact to your advantage by including clip art within the body of the copy. In graphic design, the term clip art refers to a broad category of non-photographic images that can be used to illustrate text. The name comes from the way images originally were packaged – bound in a book from which users could cut out (or clip) artwork to place in layouts. When desktop publishing replaced manual layout, users stopped clipping and began scanning the images. Now clip art books have been replaced by digital compilations available on CDs or even downloaded from web sites.

Form and Function–The Two Faces of Direct Mail Design

March 17, 2010

If you are like most of our customers, you have a lot of questions about designing an effective direct mail marketing piece. Should you use a post card, a self mailer, or an envelope? Use lots of copy or lots of white space? Announce who the mail is from, or build the reader’s curiosity? With so many variables to consider, where does one begin to seek the right answers?

To help sort through the maze of interlocking decisions, remember that there are two ways to judge how well a direct mail piece has been designed. One set of standards comes from the discipline of good graphic design; the other comes from what makes mail move efficiently through the mail stream. We believe both are important, and that a good strategy is to thoroughly understand each set.

Using Photographs in Documents & Newsletters

March 14, 2010

When used properly, photographs can greatly enhance the appearance, impact, and reader comprehension of a printed piece. Crisp, clear, or eye-catching photographs also give your documents a professional look. And what newsletter isn’t dotted with photographs of people, places, and activities?

As your printer, we have the same goal you do – to be sure all photographs are reproduced in the highest quality possible. But to accomplish this objective, we need your help. Read this issue of Printips to learn more about photographs in documents.

Using the Right Tool for the Task

March 10, 2010

Amazingly, it has been nearly two decades since desktop publishing arrived on the scene. The debut of the Apple Macintosh computer and the Hewlett Packard LaserJet printer in 1984, plus Adobe’s introduction of PostScript page description language in 1985, laid the groundwork. Then when the Aldus Corporation introduced PageMaker for the Macintosh and Adobe came out with the first PostScript printer (the Apple Laserwriter), a whole new way of publishing documents was born. (Aldus founder Paul Brainerd is generally credited for coining the phrase desktop publishing.)

Give Your Pages a Design Makeover

March 8, 2010

Next time you have your company’s marketing material in your hand, look at it as if you are seeing it for the first time. Is the design appealing? Does the message come through clearly? Are the colors pleasing and up-to-date? If you feel there is some room for improvement, then your material may be a good candidate for a design makeover.

When you understand the basics of electronic page layout and design, you will be able to analyze your current printed material and determine where improvement is needed. You will be able to tackle design problems with more insight. And since the success or failure of a page is heavily influenced by how well information is presented and organized, you may find that a relatively slight redesign will produce dramatic results.

Designing Effective Business Cards

March 7, 2010

Quick – name the single marketing item most widely used by businesses of all sizes. Did you answer business cards? With business cards, we first begin to make an impression on the people who will eventually be our customers. Our business cards establish an image for us and our organization and provide information about how we may be contacted.

And all this is presented in a familiar form that is easy to store and retrieve. If this makes a business card sound like a wonderful marketing tool, that’s because it is! By using some creativity and a bit of unconventional thinking, you can proudly present a business card that both stands out and really markets you and your company.