This mission was to design a print advertisement to run in a new Tampa Palms area magazine called ” Palms
I began as I always do, by first obtaining a copy of the publication the project would be appearing in…along with a specs sheet. It’s important to always review the format, articles, other advertisers/contributors, any competitors of your client, file guidelines and submission deadlines. (All publications will usually have a Specs Sheet or Submission Guideline available.) Next, I chatted with the consultant he had hired for several future projects…and had asked me to work with, Barbara Beall, president of Postal Options to get her feedback and ideas, confirm the target audience, agree upon any verbiage that needed to be included and any call to action or promotion to highlight. (Barbara was delightful to work with and offers a valuable service to anyone interested in direct mail! She also knows the publisher and editor of the Palms Magazine, which is a bonus for anyone interested in advertising with them!)
I asked for Dr. Venturino’s logo, which he sent me in a JPG file and then I naturally redrew in Adobe Illustrator so I had a vector EPS file to work with… because I am a control freak and prefer to have vector files. I also reviewed his website to see what else I might consider before working on concepts and looking through stock photography catalogs. I had a slight advantage because I already knew and respected Dr. Venturino so I understood his field and scope of care.
Below are several image concepts I presented with the original copy I wrote based on my initial conversations with Barbara and Nick.
After considering the original concepts above, Dr. Venturino could now visualize the space and design we discussed…and I was able to more clearly help him determine what was the most important information we needed to highlight. If you are not a visual person, it’s hard to understand what something might look like until you have something in front of you. I deal with this all day long with many clients.
We agreed that the call-to-action needed to be the free massage offer; I just needed to tweak it a bit and perhaps change the color. He wanted me to add the words, “neck pain, back pain and headaches” so that people clearly understood his specialty. We also tweaked the verbiage here and there to emphasize or de-emphasize certain points. After adding the appropriate disclaimer in teensy tiny text and VOILA, the content was complete.
Now, Barbara and I had already decided that we both liked a more bold approach…she preferred a dark background with a bold image thinking it would work best to make the ad POP in the magazine and stand out from the rest of the publication. I preferred the image of a mother with her daughter or the bold image of a silver body with a hands outstretched and a red glow on their back. I thought this married well to his logo, the audience and was very eye-catching. But as usual, the lesson I am always reminded of is that it is not what I like that matters …. it is what the client likes and what will achieve the desired goals of the ad. Results, results, results.
Dr. Venturino decided that he preferred something more traditional and wanted me to use the image I found of a man with a skeleton overlay. So, after discussing the selection with Barbara, I decided to offer Dr. Venturino three more proofs. Two would offer a solid background behind the illustration of the man to add richness and make the overall imagery more powerful…..But would also be providing the client with what he asked for.
In the end, we settled on a nice compromise that will provide Dr. Venturino with a professional new brand and help him attract the audience he desires. To see which design he ultimately selected from the final three, visit the Palms Magazine online or buy the February 2011 edition!
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