Looking at What Makes a Good Ad


In today’s age of digital metrics and multi-channel engagement, the conventional ad is sometimes thought of as an ineffective dinosaur. This thinking comes from the experience of running ineffective ads and seeing nothing tractable from the effort -especially in the face of digital offerings that can at least send back some sort of metrics. Having worked with a number of clients to build advertisements over the years, I’ve learned that making an effective ad is something that’s a bit of a mystery for many.

To shed some light on effective ad development, I’m going to be doing a series of posts that speak to the more important aspects of ad design by using actual advertisements as examples.

Some examples will be shown for the good things, some will be for the not so good things. I’m going to try and mix up the kinds of example ads and the target markets they aim at. At the end of the day, it’s not to chastise the bad or the lost. Regardless of the sorts of products or consumers aimed at, the breakdown of these ads should help future ad creators in making their work a bit more impactful – and for the right reasons.  The goal is always informative.

To summarize the core tenets of what makes a good ad, I’ve put together an entry-level list of the most important aspects. I’ll go into detail about these aspects in successive posts.

What makes a good ad:

  • It speaks the target audience’s language
  • It’s placed where the target audience will be
  • It has asks a specific action of the viewer
  • It has one specific and focused message
  • It’s designed to impart that message within a blink of an eye
  • It’s built to impart and support the brand positioning of the firm

While this series is designed to be primarily aimed at conventional advertising, by no means does it disqualify the salient points from being completely true and useful for the digital/social world. In fact, regardless of today’s abilities in A/B testing, availability of analytics or even healthy slatherings of machine learning or other buzz-friendly technologies, the core tenets here will still have much more impact and utility to crafting an ad that gets the customer results desired.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: