The Ultimate Guide to Advertising Design

advertising design

Every day, you encounter advertising design. Television, your social media feeds, buses, print advertising platforms like magazines, and even being pulled behind aircraft. Every single one of those ads are made to make you notice, remember, and want the products and services being promoted.

In the past, most advertisements were created based on assumptions, hunches, or gut instincts. But if you want your advertisements to be successful in a time when consumers are bombarded with pop-up ads, banners, and billboards, you must do your research. Given the abundance of data that marketers and graphic designers have at their disposal, you must take the time to investigate the most effective strategy for your campaign and use the data to guide the route you take with your advertising design.

Great ad design is one of the most significant things you can invest in as a business owner. But, unfortunately, it may be more complicated than you imagine to do it correctly. This article will discuss various advertising formats, what you need before you start advertising design, and some design tips for getting it exactly right.

What is Advertising Design?

Marketing and design come together in advertising design. It refers to the visual artwork created especially for advertisements (ads). However, the major goal of ad design is to promote sales of products and services.

advertising graphic design

Your brand gains popularity when you create an advertisement. Your advertisement will be seen by thousands, if not millions, of people, so be sure it conveys the right message. Remember that although good copy will use words to convey your story, the fantastic design will enhance the content better.

You have various alternatives to advertising, from digital channels like email marketing to conventional channels like magazine ads. We’ll go over six different types of advertising design in this article, with advertising design examples to assist you in getting ideas for your subsequent ad campaign.

But before that, let’s look at all you need to know about advertising design.

Things to consider before creating your advertisement

You won’t produce a terrific advertisement if you dive right into advertising design without conducting the essential research. The creation of skillfully created advertisements doesn’t happen by accident or chance; instead, it begins with your:

Brand Identity

You are not prepared to enter the field of advertising design if your brand identity is not yet well-defined. Spend time generating a strong brand identity and a unified brand concept before creating a marketing plan incorporating one or more advertising design forms.

Customer Persona

Here is what we mean when we term “customer persona”: the ideal person who will view this advertisement and purchase the product. For instance, a line of dog treats made with sustainably produced ingredients would appeal to urban, middle-class millennial dog owners. Although those that fit your defined customer persona make up most of your audience, developing your advertisement with them in mind will produce the best results. Other demographics, such as rural and Gen X dog owners, may also be interested in your product.

You must research to assist in creating your customer persona. You can make design selections for your advertising design by gathering an idea about the priorities and wants of your target audience. Find out information like:

  • What they are purchasing
  • What brands do they purchase from
  • Where their priorities are
  • What motivates their brand loyalty
  • The expectations they have for the brands they support

Product Value

The next step is to determine precisely what your product offers. Yes, you want people to purchase your goods, but a simple “hey, buy this” advertisement isn’t particularly effective. So instead, you should accentuate your product’s unique values.

Don’t simply consider your goods; consider what it has to offer the buyer persona you created. You can understand the psychology of why someone might desire to purchase a thing by becoming aware of what it offers them.

You may differentiate your product values from your rivals by conducting market and competitor research. Even though conducting market research is time-consuming, you shouldn’t skimp on it because doing so will reduce the likelihood of your product’s success.

Depending on your objectives and budget, you can either carry out your market research using techniques like focus groups and surveys, or you may hire a company that specializes in market research. You may also find useful market statistics and trends on the internet and through business resources like ThomasNet or Statista.

Goals for the Ad

As we have established, your objective is presumably to sell products by persuading your customers to purchase them. But you might also publish an advertisement requesting email addresses, event registration, offer redemption, or a gift. The idea is to make it evident in your advertising design, regardless of your ad’s objective. Each ad should have just one purpose to prevent confusing your potential customers.

Types of Ad Design with Examples

When you conduct your market research, you’ll probably be able to decide which types of advertising will be most effective for your brand. Most consumer demographics utilize the internet, but not all are active on social media platforms. If your target customer persona isn’t active on social media, running Facebook and Instagram advertising will waste time and money.

Pay attention to the types of advertisements that your rivals are running. In reality, studying the kind of advertisements your rivals are running and paying close attention to what functions well and poorly in them will give you insightful information to apply when developing your ads. Most likely, your rivals are using one or more of the following ad types:

Print Advertising

Print ads are the ads that you see in magazines and newspapers. These static ads frequently captivate you with clever text and image fusion. Your advertising ad can be quite powerful if the words and images deliver your message as you intended.

The trust and relationship between the publisher and its readers benefit print ads, particularly in newspapers and magazines. For instance, if you are marketing a book, readers and book buyers are your target audience, then running an ad in a literary magazine will help you connect with like-minded readers who appreciate and trust the magazine they subscribe to.

At the same time, anyone can pick up a magazine or newspaper and see your ad, whether it’s on a news stand or in the waiting area of a doctor’s office. However, keep in mind that print advertising design ought to be error-free! Once printed, it will remain the same way.

Patagonia, a clothing brand, is one business that has utterly nailed the print ad medium.

Because there are so many — everyone and their grandmother want to advertise on Black Friday — it can be challenging to develop a Black Friday marketing campaign that stands out. In addition to making a statement with its “Don’t buy this jacket” campaign, Patagonia upheld its commitment to sustainability.

instagram advertising design

Video Ads

Video ads include text, images, sound, and motion. These can be found on TV, social media platforms, or YouTube. In either case, your objective when making a video ad is to create one that is so compelling that it catches the viewer’s attention.

To make a successful video ad that an audience won’t miss, you need to be bolder, funnier, more thought-provoking, and above all, convey your message faster.

The Doritos “Another Level” ad is one of the top ads of 2019 (and one of the most significant brand flex). The company completely abandoned its logo, but they were very inventive in how it used branding aspects to identify the ad as a Doritos one, such as:

  • Colors of iconic and distinctive chip bags
  • Attention is mainly placed on the “cheese dust” these chips contain.
  • Rhyming their brand name with “I need those”
  • Triangle chip shapes are cleverly used throughout the ad.

Social Media Ads

Social media ads provide a considerable possibility to generate leads and close sales, depending on your business model. However, since scrolling through your feed mindlessly on social media is the norm, creating ads that grab viewers’ attention is essential to the success of your campaign. Fortunately, doing so is simple with good design!

Remember that the size limits for ads vary between social networks. Therefore, before you design your ad, familiarize yourself with the current image size guidelines to avoid making a stretched, warped, or otherwise unsuitable ad.

When it comes to social ads, OpenCare popped up like crazy (and they nailed it!). So why were their social media ads extremely effective?

  • The pictures they utilize have fascinating visuals
  • Every ad for them visualizes their brand consistently.
  • They alternate between images and videos in their ads.
  • Their ads are on-trend (like the one below, which jumps on the Disney+ bandwagon).
graphic design advertising

Outdoor Ads

Outdoor ads come in various forms, including billboards, transit ads, and street furniture. So how can you get people who are probably hooked to their phone screens while walking by? Using engaging, imaginative ads for your audience. A beautiful poster design is insufficient for developing an outdoor ad campaign. People need to be interested in your content enough to perform the action you want, like using your discount codes to purchase products, visiting your websites (if more than one, etc.

On these screens, advertisers occasionally employ promotional codes to gauge the overall impact of the advertisement. This is wise since it is far harder to measure outdoor advertisements than digital commercials, where marketers can see everything from clicks, views, and saves to repurchases and websites visit.

Using Rebecca’s Fine Cuban and Caribbean cuisine outdoor ad, the design elements are visible. In addition, the images, texts, color schemes, etc., were displayed correctly for the audience to communicate with the ad seamlessly.

design advertising

Email Ads

Email marketing and advertising are different, but they can coexist in an email marketing plan. Unlike your newsletters and other communications, these are referred to as promotional emails because they promote specific products and deals.

Just be mindful not to abuse email advertising. When consumers experience an overabundance of ads, especially email ads that clog up their inboxes, they grow irritated with the sender and form unfavorable opinions of that company. So ensure you’re sending as much or more valuable material as adverts to prevent that from happening to your brand.

So how do you create an email ad? First, look at how the best businesses handle it! Consider Warby Parker as an example; they are so good at email advertising that you can find advertising design examples of them everywhere. Their emails have a stunning layout and a prominent call to action.

graphic design and advertising

Direct Mail

Direct mail, one of the most conventional forms of advertising, can stand out from the internet’s noise. But here, design errors are costly. You must not only have complete devotion to your design. Because there is no turning back once you press print, you must ensure that everything appears excellent on paper.

To get you started, consider these fantastic direct mail advertising design ideas:

  • Offer a deal on your goods or services
  • Inform people about the launch of a new product.
  • Utilize it to cross-sell or upsell, similar to the exquisitely designed BMW direct mailer.
advertising website design

Getting Graphic Design Advertising Right

It’s time to focus on the perfect look and feel that will persuade your target audience to buy your products, sign up for your mailing list, and do everything else your ad directs them to do once you’ve determined which forms of advertising design will perform best for your brand.

Inspiring Trust

If people don’t think they can trust you, they won’t buy your stuff. Even advertisements for charitable organizations and free content must inspire trust, so this is true even if you aren’t selling anything.

advertising design flyers

How do you manage that? Through reviews and ratings left by contented clients. Social proof is one of the most powerful tools in advertising.

Social proof is the assurance that a good product or service results from witnessing another person using it and expressing satisfaction with it. This other person can be a celebrity or influencer, or it could be a regular person who fits the customer avatar.

Consider how many ads you’ve seen with happy clients. Testimonials are used in advertising design for a reason—they are effective.

Connecting with Your Audience

You engage your audience by conveying value and inspiring trust while being true to your brand. This is the ultimate aim of all marketing initiatives you undertake.

advertising and graphic design

Speak directly to the issues that matter to your audience to engage them. What matters to your ideal consumers? This brings up your market research. Quality? Price? Sustainability? Being stylish? Show them how your product meets the need for which it was designed.

Balance and Hierarchy

Your advertisement must be visually balanced. It must also have a distinct hierarchy.

By balanced, we mean that there shouldn’t be awkward white space or an excessive amount of either crowdedness or sparsity (though negative space can be a powerful tool).

In graphic design, hierarchy refers to how an image is put together so that the viewer notices the most crucial aspects first, then the next-most important elements, and so on, until they reach the call to action.

In plain English, your subhead should be larger than your supporting text, and your headline should be in a larger font.

Your call to action should be evident and essential, but it also needs to be the last thing the audience sees—a final statement placed purposefully atop your ad.

website design advertising

Communicating Value

Your ad must communicate value in addition to building trust. More particularly, the worth of both your brand and your product.

poster advertising design

You can convey value by demonstrating your product in use and how it differs from the competitors. Alternatively, you can highlight the differences between your product and its rivals in terms of effectiveness, convenience, and value for money. Whatever your research shows your target customers care about most, incorporate that into your ad design to convey your brand’s value clearly.

marketing and advertising graphic design

A Clear, Actionable Call-to-Action

The final element of any effective ad is a call to action (CTA), which should be evident and easy to follow. CTAs typically appear as follows:

  • Get now
  • Discover more
  • Subscribe
  • Sign up now

They frequently restate the advantage that the advertisement promises. For instance:

  • Sign up today to reserve your place.
  • Purchase now and save significantly 
  • Subscribe now and never miss an update
advertising flyer design

Your CTA must direct the viewer’s action and create a sense of urgency. You want them to buy your products immediately; you don’t want them to think about doing so. With a well-written CTA, make that crystal apparent.

Advertising Design Examples and Why They Work

Let’s take a look at five advertising designs from masters well-known throughout the world:

Example 1: Cadbury Ad

advertising design ideas

The UK’s most popular chocolate bar does not require an introduction to its audience in the UK; it was apparent that the firm was sending a strong message when it removed the words from the packages and left them unadorned in their customary purple foil wrappings. This advertising strategy relied heavily on the audience’s familiarity with the brand and product. This action was taken as part of a more significant initiative to help Age UK promote social interaction between young and old, demonstrating the power of effective advertisement design to start various discussions.

Example 2: Apple Ad

design and advertising agencies

Apple has gone beyond being a “lifestyle” brand. It is now the toolkit for all endeavors. Want to produce incredible animations? Manage a small company? Want to spend time with the children? Want to take stunning pictures and videos on the go? You can accomplish it with the aid of an Apple gadget. This iPhone advertisement emphasizes that notion. Photographers were requested to use the new iPhone to capture live performances by well-known performers. Beautiful pictures emerged as a result, and they eventually dominated the advertisement design.

Example 3: KFC Ad

graphic design advertising examples

Everyone has seen them. Imitations of well-known brands to achieve the same degree of profitability as they do. Everything has the potential to be copied, even food companies like KFC and handbags and shoes. KFC’s advertising campaign targets mom-and-pop chicken restaurants that have emerged as “pretenders” to the throne. The chicken giant has a solid global brand influencing hundreds of chains and stores with comparable names. The goal of the ad design is to remind the world of who the true king of fried chicken is.

Example 4: NIKE Ad

examples of good advertising design

The Nike brand is about inspiration, not just athleticism or performance. It honors not only athletes but also the athlete within every one of us. Their most recent advertising campaign illustrates a style that doesn’t depend on linking Nike to the players it features. At the same time, it is invisible and enduring. Just before you step onto the field, it feels like your coach is giving you a pep talk. Nike campaigns are known for their innovative advertising designs and have mastered their one-of-a-kind strategy.

Example 5: Casper Ad

advertising banner design

Most businesses want to advertise their goods as plainly as possible. Even though it’s crucial to avoid patronizing your demographic, most ad designs strive to avoid making your target market work too hard to understand what you’re trying to convey. Casper decided to take a chance with this simple advertisement design. They used brainteasers to engage the public and establish a favorable relationship between Casper and sleep. The outcome is a distinctive advertising campaign and design.

Get Good Advertising Design

Graphic design has come to be associated with the world of advertising, and any brand that wants to communicate with the public must use visuals to promote its goods and services. However, many factors must be considered while you create advertising designs for the message to stick with viewers after seeing it.

Direct and motivating advertising must compel viewers to act in a certain way. And it requires a genuine talent to balance the words of your call to action, where to put it, which testimonies to utilize, and whether there is room for all of that.

It could be a difficult task. However, all of those questions become simple to answer once you locate the perfect graphic designer to assist you. Then, all you have to do is relax and wait for the sales to come in. In simple terms, choose All Time Design!

When you choose All Time Design as your trusted graphic designer plug, you can seize the opportunity to do more than just your ad design at a fixed fee. With its wealth of experienced graphic designers, you can watch your idea and message come to life.

Request a demo.


January 4, 2023
10 min read
6 reads

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