magazines, direct mail, newspapers, posters & collateral

Advertising in

Helpful Tips: Magazine Ads

1. Consider the audience who would read the magazine


Make sure it reflects the ideals of the reader and suits the magazine.


An ad for Fortune magazine vs. Better Homes & Gardens 

Helpful Tips: Magazine Ads

2. Consider the Resolution


Magazine ads are often printed on high end gloss paper. Make sure to use a resolution of at least 150 dpi (300 dpi is ideal) for a crisp imagery and text


Helpful Tips: Magazine Ads

3. Use space well


Make use of all available space, either through using colors, pictures or lettering.


This doesn't mean make the ad busy, but consider white space in the overall design




Helpful Tips: Magazine Ads

4. Be Clear. Start Simple


It should also be very clear in what it is offering, so be sure to make the message of the advertisement is the central focus.


Begin simple. Some of the best advertisements are very simple designs with a strong message.


Try a single, commanding message or image in the center of your advertisement or consider a double page ad






DESIGN Tips: Magazine Ads

  • Use a clear, easy to read font
  • Make sure all type (even disclaimer) is legible
  • Headlines should be 11 words or less
  • Take advantage of full color (but don't make it busy)
  • Don't include a bunch of unrelated imagery
  • Check the size (specs) of the ad to be placed. Full page? Half page? Small square?


Remember: the concept comes first, design is second. 







  • Posters are larger then magazine ads, however  they have the same design strategy when it comes to magazine ads
  • Usually have less information then magazine ads
  • Most posters are environmental so consider the location on where it will be placed when thinking about design
  • Large typography and colorful imagery so it can be noticed from a distance
  • Think about a "series" approach

HElpFUL Tips: Direct Mail

  • Direct Mail (DM) includes ANYTHING that is sent in the mail as an advertisement
  • This includes postcards, brochures, catalogs, free samples and invitations.
  • It can also include any type of 3D packaging or items. Although these are expensive to ship, they DO stand out among the crowd.

DESIGN Tips: Direct Mail

  • Consider the size of the piece. The larger the piece, the more expensive it will be to ship
  • You also have to consider mailing guidelines: where are they putting the stamp? The barcode?
  • Check out the USPS website to figure out standard sizes and estimate a price. For non standard items, you need to contact USPS and get an estimate

DESIGN Tips: Direct Mail

  • Think about the envelope. Are you going to have one? If so, keep it very simple
  • Create intrigue with a headline
  • Consider the paper and include that as part of the final designed piece. 
  • Make sure the typography is readable and it can still be read if the edges are a bit "beat -up"
  • Unless it's a brochure, avoid long copy. Get to the point
  • Use imagery only if it supports the message


  • There are restraints in newspaper design that can feel very limiting.
  • Limited color (b&w, 3 color), paper quality and dot pattern can make it feel cheap
  • Size restrictions for an ad. You need to visit the newspapers website to see what those size restrictions are

Newspaper subscription (printed) has gone down considerably. Yet, advertising in newspaper is still very much alive.


  • Use a headline or a captivating image to pull people in
  • Have a clear and very short message
  • Use white or black space to stand out from other advertisements on the page
  • Limit the number of fonts you use
  • Determine where to advertise and what size ad would work best
  • Find the unique selling point of the product you're selling 

AIDA- Attention, Information, Desire and Action


By shadow4611


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