‘Small’ changes can make a big difference

When CSL approached us to redesign their print advert, they were happy to give us plenty of creative freedom, but we thought that their existing advert was actually a good starting point.

No need to reinvent the wheel

The existing artwork had been designed by the company’s in-house print department, which meant it was reasonably creative artwork rather than true design (see our comparison of the two approaches in this article). There were naturally quite a few obvious improvements that could be made, but fundamentally the structure was reasonably sound and was a lot better than most examples we see when companies try to do the design themselves. However, you may think, when you click on the ‘Before’ and ‘After’ images below, that the designs are completely different, and this just goes to show the value of lots of small improvements and how the application of expertise can result in a radically improved design.

Step by step

Other than creating more ‘White space‘ with more generous margins and paragraph spacing, here’s a breakdown of the specific improvements we made:

  1. The fact they’d tried to use a more abstract image rather than feature just a literal image of a copier was good. Although the image of the doors was ok, it wasn’t great. We focussed on the idea of being local and used a generic map illustration with a ‘pin’ featuring the CSL logo.
  2. Putting a drop-shadow under the headline can help legibility. However, here it was fighting a losing battle – our choice of a much less cluttered image helped eliminate this issue.
  3. The copier image was a very good ‘visual shortcut’ as it made it obvious what they provided. We made it smaller so it didn’t dominate and looked more balanced, and with a more subtle drop-shadow.
  4. Having the text to one side was good. However, ‘justified’ text (i.e when it’s lined up both left and right in the column) can look a little stiff and clunky. We used the additional space we’d gained to have two columns of text, with a clear introduction paragraph that spanned them both.
  5. There was a nice large phone number on the original advert. However, there was no call to action to go with it. Our approach created a clear call-to-action and allowed us to feature three regional phone numbers.
  6. The postal address on the original advert was unnecessary – the idea was the reader would call for more info or visit the website. We removed the address and gave more emphasis and space for the website.

The team at CSL were extremely happy with the results of this project and we have continued to work with them on developing their brand over a number of other projects, with great results. If you would like us to evaluate your existing marketing materials then give us a call, we’d be happy to help.

BEFORE: Original client version

AFTER: Pixooma designed version


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