At some point in your career as a designer, you may have to create promotional material. This aspect of design can range from flyers and posters to stands and billboards. When you undertake a project like this one, you will need to know what you are doing. Making something look attractive is not always the best way to go. You need to choose a style that suits the company and their demographic. Follow these rules to create the best possible design.
Keep Your Audience in Mind
Whenever you are designing, you should have a particular audience in mind. Who will see this design? What do you want to convey to them? If you are working for a company, you can have them brief you on who their key demographic is. That way, you will know just who to target and how to approach the project in general. Once you have an idea of the audience, you can begin to tailor your design to suit them.
Choose Bold, Powerful Colors
Much of the time, promotional design tends to rest on the idea that you need bright and flashy colors to make it work. You want to convey a powerful tone in your design, which means that you need to choose the right colors. You should, of course, work with the colors that the company uses for the rest of their branding. If you have some freedom when it comes to choosing themes, you need to think about what makes a strong color. Royal blue and rouge are always popular in this form of design.
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Don’t Use too Much Text
When you are designing flyers, in particular, you need to avoid using too much text. This rule can be hard to follow, especially if you are working with a stubborn client. Some clients will give you loads of text and expect you to fit it onto a small flyer. You need to warn them against this technique as it will make it appear as though there is no space on the material. You should tell them to keep things simple. Ask for the essential information and tell them to try to cut down their words if possible.
Ensure that Your Design is Cohesive
If you are designing a complete promotional package, you need to make sure that the style is cohesive. All the promotional material has to have the same design so that it looks fluid. For example, your banner design should be the same as your stand design. These little touches make a world of difference when you are creating an entire package. If the client plans to take the package to a trade show, they need it to work as one entity, rather than many different things. Usually, you need to make sure that you create a theme before you begin designing.
Avoid Heavy Imagery
You might find it tempting to put a massive image on your designs, but you should avoid this in most cases. Every image that you use needs to suit the materials. When you are choosing images for the promotional items, you need to make sure that they suit the brand. Sometimes, designers find it all too easy to use a picture as the centerpiece for their designs and work around it. The pictures should complement your work, not define it. If you keep that in mind, you will have no issues with your design.
Keep the Message Clear
Every piece of literature or promotional document should have one key message. You need to ensure that you keep the point of the piece clear from the start. People should look at the material and know what the message is from the moment they see it. You have to remember that people don’t tend to spend all that long looking at promotional things. If something does not grab their attention, it means that they will move on and stop reading. It is your job to ensure that the material is eye-catching and engaging.
Use White Space Well
Never underestimate the value of white space. You don’t need to cover every inch of a banner or flyer. Some designers fear leaving any white space, but there is no need to do so. The space can make the material look classy and interesting. You need to learn how to use it to your best advantage. Once you know how the space can affect the material, you should make a piece that portrays the right message.
Choose a Light Typeface
The text on the material needs to be legible when it is complete. The last thing you want is to create a piece of promotional literature that nobody can read. The entire point of this project is to get a message across to a particular demographic. That means that the people have to understand the material right away. Avoid using too many different font styles and keep things simple. You should choose a light typeface that is easy to read. You also need to make sure that you understand leading and kerning techniques. The text needs to have a whole load of space between it so that people can read it with ease.
Ensure that Print Quality is High
When it comes to printing the material, you want to make sure that things are high quality. Sometimes, you will not have a say on how your material looks. If you are working with a large corporation, you should at least give them advice on what type of print to use. After all, when people see your designs, they get an idea of what you can do. If people print your designs badly, it will make you look bad as a designer. Insist on high-quality printing, whenever this is possible.
When you start a new promotional product, it can be tricky. If you stick to these key rules, though, you should get things right every time. Remember, designing should be a pleasure, not a chore.