Fargo logos and Design: Making Your Print Ad “Pop”: Adding Color Can Help Increase the Effectiveness of Your Marketing Campaign

An effective ad is an essential element of any successful marketing campaign. It is a visual introduction to a company and the product or services offered. It also provides

potential customers with important information, such as the benefits of a product or service and contact information.

In creating your ad, a key goal is to make it stand out from the rest. There are a number of ways to do this. One of the most commonly used methods is adding color. Using color can help you distinguish important elements in the ad. For example, it can be used to emphasize an important piece of information such as a product name or a web address. Color can also establish hierarchy, giving the reader cues as to where their eyes should go first when viewing the ad. Read below to learn more about how you can enhance your print ad campaign with color.

Fargo Logo&Design: The Psychology of Color

Color can be quite powerful and can help you illicit a particular response or convey a specific mood or tone. For instance, red invokes feelings of excitement and passion; yellow is cautionary and used to give warning; blue is cool and authoritative; and green is reassuring. So when creating a print ad, it is important that the psychology of color is kept in mind and that the use of color is consistent with your goals.

Color can also be subjective. According to Gwen Roy, Senior Art Director of APA’s Monitor on Psychology and gradPSYCH, bright colors, but not fluorescents, seem to be most pleasing. “Basic shades of reds, blues and yellows are good,” she says.

Fargo Logo&Design: Four-color or Two-color?

Placing a color ad entails not only deciding which colors to use, but how many. Four-color ads are extremely effective if color is used properly. Roy cautions that you have to know when to stop. “Too many gradients and colors can be distracting and can take away from the ad,” she says. “If there is too much of anything, it will not work. There needs to be some white space, some breathing room in the ad.”

Two-color ads can be equally successful. According to Roy, depending on the layout, a simple two-color ad can be just as effective as one that is 4-color. “A two-color ad stands out because it doesn’t look like the other ads nor the editorial that surrounds it in the publication,” she says. “One of my favorite ads is from Wide Range. It is really nice because of its simple use of color. It is a 2-color ad, but it is still very interesting and pleasing to the eye. I always notice it.”

Fargo Logo&Design: The Challenges of Color Reproduction

In creating color ads, getting accurate color reproduction is always a major challenge. What you see on your computer screen is not usually what you see in your printouts nor on the final printed piece. “You can’t trust what is on the monitor and in your printouts. The white light on the screen causes the images to look different than on paper,” Roy says.

Another reason for this color shift is because scanners, computer monitors, laser printers, printer proofs, and printing presses define and display colors differently. For instance, computer monitors and offset printing presses use different color systems. Images on the monitor are displayed using RGB — colors produced by combining red, green, and blue. On the other hand, offset printing produces color by mixing cyan, magenta, yellow, and black (CMYK) ink.

Fargo Logo&Design: Converting RGB Files to CMYK

When supplying your 2-color or 4-color ad for publication, it is very important to save any RGB application files and graphic elements as CMYK. If an ad is converted from RGB to CMYK during the printing process, chances are the end result will be very different than what is expected. “Ads are printed in a CMYK environment. So when RGB files are converted to CMYK there are algorithm shifts in color,” explains Paul Bellis, Electronic Prepress Technical Support Leader at Fry Communications, Inc., in Mechanicsburg, PA. “Proofs generated in RGB do not look like the final piece that is printed with CMYK inks.” For example, an RGB file may appear to be blue on your monitor screen, but when it is printed on an offset press it looks purple. This shift occurs when a combination of 100% cyan and 100% magenta is used to reproduce the RGB blue.

Ads using PMS or spot colors should also be supplied in a CMYK color space. The reason explains Bellis is that in the proofing environment the proofers do not have all of the actual Pantone colors to use as reference. “We don’t usually have the entire library of colors. So ads simulated as CMYK give us some guidance.”

Fargo Logo&Design: Using Color Management Systems

While there are color management systems, such as the PANTONE Matching System or Kodak Digital Science Color Management System, available that attempt to make colors more consistent across different devices, the reality is that exact color matching is almost impossible. Investing in one of these formal systems, however, can help you match colors as accurately as possible. You can also use simple reference guides, such as the PANTONE swatch book for screen builds, to see how a printed version of a built PMS color will appear. Rather than trying to match color on screen to the final output, Roy recommends using a PMS swatch book to produce color. She advises building PMS colors and then converting them to CMYK in an application program, such as QuarkXpress, used to design the ad.

Fargo Logo&Design: Supplying Color Proofs

When submitting your ad to a magazine or newspaper publisher, be sure to include a color proof. Color proofs are very important tools. Serving as a reference guide, they help the proofers at the print shop determine if the final printed reproduction will be close to the original proof. “Having a proof gives us some color guidance,” says Bellis. “If we receive an iris or match print proof, then we can match colors more accurately at the proofing stage.”

Because there are a wide variety of sources that can generate proofs, Bellis advises the use of color laser printers, such as Kodak or Epson, that have been SWOP certified. SWOP (Specifications for Web Offset Publications) is a set of guidelines established by the Magazine Publishers Association to specify standard ink colors and dot gain tolerances. This gives print shops an acceptable color variation range in which final printed pieces can fall within. For yellow, magenta, and cyan, the range is generally+/- 0.02. For black, it is +/- 0.04.

A Final Note

When planning your marketing strategy, be sure to consider color in your print ads. It can enhance your message and make your ad stand at full attention. If you decide to go with color, keep in mind the tips above so that there are no major surprises and you are awarded with a successful marketing campaign.

Fargo Printing: Save Money with us Locally Fargo Moorhead Printing Service
Fargo Printing: Save Money with us Locally

Phone: 701-729-3824

Please Be Patient while it loads
Thanks For Considering us


Post a Comment