Mousetrap Marketing Series #21-#26

April 16, 2007

The Mousetrap Series…by Matt Michel

The Mousetrap Series is about helping you sell more mousetraps, no matter what the mousetrap is that you sell. I don’t care how good your mousetrap is, few people will buy it if you do not market it well. 

The next few tips in the Mousetrap Series relate directly to graphic design. As a business owner you do not need to know everything there is to know about graphic design. You do not need to perform graphic design. However, you should be able to recognize the basics of good design when you see it. After all, it’s your money that’s getting spent.

Since it helps to "see" examples, you might want to download a copy of the "Build a More Profitable Service Business" notes by clicking on the Link below…

21. Pictures Trump Clip Art
Clip art has it’s place, but the proliferation of clip art has done almost as much harm to graphic design as the emergence of 10,000 font CD-ROMs. While clip art has it’s place, pictures trump clip art almost every time.

I used to test this by flipping open a yellow pages directory I had to the rental car section. There were two, nearly identical ads, side by side. One featured a line art drawing of a can. The other featured a gray scale image of a car. I asked people to pick the ad that caught their eye. Nine times out of ten, people picked the ad with the picture over the ad with the line art.

What holds for rental cars, holds even more for people. Use photographs and cut the image out of the background if necessary.

22. People Prefer Pictures of People
Contractors love trucks. There’s nothing more appealing to a contractor than a great big shiny new service or installation truck. If you want contractors to look at your ad, put a truck in it. If you want people to look at it, put a person in it.

People are warm, friendly, and expressive. Trucks are cold and metallic. The same thing is true about condensing units, water heaters, and so on.

23. Extend Graphics Into The Page
Extending a graphic into the text on a page, which wraps around the graphic, makes the page more interesting. It Links the graphic and the text, adding a sense of harmony.

24. Continue The Lead Story of a Newsletter Inside
If you want people to open your newsletter, continue the lead story inside. It gives people a reason to opne the newsletter. This same tactic is used with every newspaper. Editors could easily cut the story to the first page, but they don’t. They want you to open the paper.

25. Break Box Borders to Break Out of the Box
Borders make things nice and neat. They can also be confining and boring. Engineers love borders. Add visual interest by extending graphics or text outside of or past borders. It adds visual interest and can be used to direct people to focal points.

26. Look Into the Page Unless You Want Them to Read the Ad Next Door
If you’ve got a graphic, it should be pointed into your ad, not outside of it. Images of people should be looking into your ad. If images are directed off the page, you’re leading the eye away from your ad, your copy, your sales.


Source: Comanche Marketing. Reprinted by permission.
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Copyright © 2004 Matt Michel

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