Best Practices for Creative Mediums

Print, digital and outdoor advertising mediums provide brands with visual storytelling platforms to drive brand awareness and lead generation. We tapped into our Creative Department to share important fundamentals to keep in place when designing Creative for your brand.

Insert these best practices into your marketing plan to create the most compelling and memorable visual for your brand.


  • Align design and messaging across mediums. For example, newspaper ads should be cohesive with email campaigns, online ads and social media promotions. This builds synergy and brand recognition with consumers at any touchpoint with your advertising.
  • Create a branded messaging document to house all key copy points for your brand. This hones in on your messaging and ensures you are properly communicating your brand’s narrative.
  • Keep a maximum of two to three fonts in one creative piece.
  • Know who your audience is by medium and tailor messaging as needed. For example, the audience you reach on social media will be different than the newspaper.
  • Communicate a clear call-to-action.
  • Generate trackable contact information, such as a phone number, to report on consumers’ behavior and conversions.
  • Incorporate testimonials when appropriate. This is hugely influential for brands steering consumers towards a purchase within the sales funnel.
  • Prioritize information and be purposeful with visual hierarchy, the arrangement of visual elements in order of importance. The most important elements are made to hold the most attention through scale, color, font type, etc.
    • In order to identify this, ask yourself: What main point do I want the consumer to takeaway?
  • White space is not always empty space. Keeping a creative piece clear of visual clutter can be more enticing and will make your message memorable.



Design and Messaging

  • Use a font size 6pt or larger.
  • Use clear images that highlight product imagery and/or support your headline.
  • Paper type and weight have an effect on photography when printed. For example, newspaper tends to be more porous which causes image colors to bleed.

Direct Mail: Postcard

Print: Newspaper Ad

Placement Opportunities

Additional mediums to consider for your marketing mix, outside of the above

  • Marketing Collateral (informative brochure, leave-behind)
  • Direct Mail 
    • Valpak
    • Postcards
  • Magazine ad



Design and Messaging

  • Include movement and interest through animation.
  • Keep copy clear and concise.
  • Make the headline and body copy different sizes, and keep copy four lines or less in total.
  • Get creative with CTA buttons, yet be specific and support the headline. Give the consumer a reason to click the button other than “Learn More.”
  • Do not use a font smaller than 10pt. It loses legibility if it is too small.

Banner Ad:

Webpage design:

Placement Opportunities

Additional placements to consider for your marketing mix, outside of the above

  • Social media ad
  • Native ads (in-feed, search ads, widgets, promoted listings)
  • Display ads
    • Static
    • Wallpaper
    • Pop-up
  • Email marketing



Design and Messaging

  • A billboard is a brand awareness advertising medium, which means that it is ideal for driving brand recognition but it cannot do the heavy lifting.
  • Include six words or fewer. Six seconds has been touted as the industry average for reading a billboard. As a rule of thumb, less is more.
  • Consider the logo size. There is a balancing act that has to be played. A logo that is too big can distract from the primary message, and a logo that is too small may be looked over.
  • The Arm’s Distance Test: 
    • Print out your billboard to the size of a business card and hold it out at arm’s length. Are you still seeing everything you were when it was displayed on your monitor? If not, go in and refine it.

If you would like to learn more about creative design strategies or have any questions, please reach out to us directly at Looking forward to hearing from you!

–The R&A Team

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