Banner ads continue to create quite the buzz. As tools of digital marketing, they are quite nifty: tiny, but will pack a punch if designed well. But, get this, and this is important — the average person gets to see over 1700 banner ads a month. That’s a big number. So, how do you make sure your display advertisement stands out from the rest? How do you get it together and get across to your potential leads and customers?
Creating a Banner Ad: It’s a Process, Sometimes Painstaking
A banner ad looks simple, all right. A few relevant bits of brand elements put together, often in a rectangular frame. But, we’ll break it to you: while simple enough to create, a banner ad does involve quite a bit of attention to detail, a series of steps. We will now break the process down:
1. Crafting the Perfect Copy
Let’s face it: a banner ad, however designed and sized, doesn’t have all that much space to communicate with your audience. So you’ll have to be a wordsmith and learn to say it all with just a few words, usually far less than even 20. If put together well, it will grab the viewer’s attention and stay on their mind. A crafty copy is, after all, half the messaging achieved.
So, you have to make sure you have your USP put out there, clearly worded. It has to be enticing and integrate a ‘what’s in it for me’ element to get your potential customer to click through to your landing page. And, that would bring us to the CTA. Make sure it’s unique, unequivocally worded, and set apart nicely.
To sum that up, make sure your copy has:
- A headline that hooks.
- A unique value proposition. It should be a message about the particular offering, not just the brand.
- A voice that speaks to the customer. Short, streamlined, and sympathetic is one surefire tone that will get through.
- Something to set it apart from the display site’s copy while also, ideally, echoing its branding and value proposition.
2. Devising a Distinct Design
While the copy is half the job done for a banner ad, the design is the complementary element that will ensure it stands out. In this day and age, when the average browser has seen it all, your design has to be a bit radical. You will have to look at it from a 360° perspective: fonts, colors, images, and buttons would be the primary elements to tackle for a killer design. Studies show that any design with an image included has a higher chance of reeling in the reader / viewer.
Research also shows that, while many marketers continue to use static and GIF ads, animated ads with HTML5 have a higher conversion. But, make sure the animation is simple, optimally looped, ending on a CTA frame, and not distracting from the rest of the message. You could also experiment with static ads, especially while starting a campaign.
Check out these banner ads for design inspiration.
So, for a superlatively designed banner ad, you will have to:
- Integrate your branding, placing your logo, up top and center.
- Ensure the colors are complementary and in line with your messaging. Remember, every color has some significance.
- Source and perfectly place branded or stock images that support your message. Make sure they are crisp, clear, and add value.
- Optimize your font type and size. Use different sizes for the heading and the subtext. And, cut out the cursives and thin-sizes; studies show they don’t really grab eyeballs.
- Have a neatly set apart and visually engaging CTA in a clearly clickable button.
3. Tying it all Together for a Tasteful Template
Once you have the copy and the design worked out, you will have to bring the elements together to create the actual banner ad. Figure out the size of your ad based on where you want to position it. Importantly, if you don’t have much choice in ad positioning, figure out the size before crafting your elements of copy and design. You can also draw up variously sized ads and experiment with them. Most importantly, your banner ad’s template should be in tune with your landing page. Make sure their designs are complementing each other; if the ad looks too different, it’s going to come across as gimmicky, and your viewer might be put off.
In essence, your template should take care of:
- Targeting various viable ad positions. Typically, display ads placed near other captivating content and above the fold (most ideally within the headline section) show higher CTRs.
- Appropriately sized displays. According to Google AdSense, the most successful standard banner sizes are 728×90px (Leaderboard), 300×600px (Half Page), 300×250px (Medium Rectangle), and 336×280px (Large Rectangle).
- Optimizing space for copy and visual elements. Ideally, reserve two-thirds of the frame for the value proposition and / or images and one-third for the CTA.
- Adaptability for an entire campaign, if necessary, and not just a one-off display. In other words, draw up a consistent, cohesive template for a running series.
4. Putting the Finishing Touches and Exporting
Once the templates of your banner ads are edited and brought together, the next and last step in the making of your digital displays is the file creation, of course. You will have to optimize the file size according to your needs. The smaller, the better, especially in the context of placing animated ads. But, bear in mind, ads with images and / or animation do tend to be bigger. Also, the file type is a crucial consideration. Have the work delivered in JPG, PNG, GIF, or HTML5, based on the creator tool and your display requirements.
As part of the last step of finalizing your working banner ad, you will thus have to:
- Size for various needs. You can have the ad saved in different sizes for different positioning and targeting as part of your campaign.
- Optimize the size for the display purposes. Also, you will want to customize for mobile view.
- Be correct with the file type. Remember, flash ads are out of vogue, so make sure your ad deliverables are in the more recent formats. Veer towards vectors when you can.
Going In-House Or The Outsource Route?
So, now that you have taken in the process of creating the perfect banner ad, are you ready to take it on? Or, would you rather outsource it?
Here are four reasons why you should hand over your banner ad creation to experts like us, who will put together some of the most engaging static, HTML5, and GIF display banners from scratch with a remarkably short turnaround time:
1. End-to-end solutions
Once outsourced, the entire banner ad creation process is taken off your hands. You will only have to make the strategic calls; all the other nitty-gritty and lesser, tactical decisions can confidently be handed over to the experts. This leaves you to focus more on the actual marketing campaign while the agency handles the time- and effort-intensive detailing for you.
2. No need to license software
Most of the best software for creating banner ads come with a subscription model. To access the pro, ad-free features, you will have to upgrade from the free version. If you rope in a MarTech agency to create your display ads, all this gets taken care of. What’s more, more often than not, the costs are bundled up with the total fee, and it works out quite reasonably.
3. Wider perspective on ad space
There are a few ways by which you can secure the display space for your banner ad: by directly drawing up a deal with a website’s sales team, via a marketplace for ad space, or through an ad network. A fourth option could prove most optimal: going about it programmatically via the agency. An agency would, at all times, be tapping into the latest trends. This would include knowing what display platform and what kind of ad space would work best for your specific banner ads and your overall campaign.
4. Third-party audit of the entire process
Any ad campaign is intrinsically tied to the marketer. It could be their brainchild, or they might be calling all the larger shots. Sometimes, the person might be too close to the product to take a holistic view of its creation and contribution to the campaign. When you hand over the process of putting the ad together and out there to the experts, you will benefit from their inputs. After all, who can perfect your pitch better than the professionals?
So, now that you have heard it all about banner ads, don’t get bogged down! Just think the brand’s big picture, outline the strategy for your banner ad campaign, and leave the rest to the experts. Once you have their ear and get collaborating on your messaging, they will put together the perfect display ads for you. Ones that will definitely captivate, capture, and cultivate your customer base.
Want the professionals to create unique, attractive, and lucrative banner displays for your campaign? Tap into our banner ad design services.