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Blog Post | Feb 01, 2022

Great Graphic Design Is Not Just Visual - It is Emotional

Great graphic design is about so much more than creating an appealing layout and organizing information.

Topics: Creative Services

Graphic Design
As an integrated marketer, you already know how important graphic design is to help you organize information and connect your audience with content that can solve their problems. But if your entire business strategy is about appealing to your customers’ rational nature, you could be missing out. One recent survey showed that ads that were seen as purely emotional were twice as effective as ads that only appealed to reason.

Even in B2B marketing, being able to provoke an emotional response matters: Why just offer a widget when instead, you can provide a solution that makes your buyer look smart, capable and heroic – or, conversely, helps them avoid the potential fear and shame associated with buying the wrong product?

Thoughtful graphic design can create emotional resonance in surprising ways.
 

Color me emotional


Color can have a huge impact on how your marketing looks and resonates with your customers. Colors alone can influence up to 90% of an initial impression, and 85% of consumers report that color is the primary driver of their purchase decision. However, tapping into your audience’s emotions isn’t as simple as “red = passion or anger” and “green = sustainable” for two potent reasons:
 
  • Colors and their emotional impact can vary significantly by industry. For example, the logos used by Kellogg’s and ESPN use a similar shade of red, yet both evoke very different sets of responses.
  • The color still needs to work with your existing palette. An experienced designer selects colors based on several criteria, including how they work together. Throwing a new color into the mix could create unintended consequences, such as impairing readability, provoking the opposite response of what you’re going after or looking unattractive.
 

Turning content into narrative


People want to not only understand how a product or service can solve their problems but they want to imagine and visualize it too. Graphic design is a huge part of turning copy and content into a narrative – first, by creating a layout that flows well, establishing a hierarchy of information, and leading the reader through a piece. A good graphic designer may even have ideas for telling your story in unexpected ways: Consider how the best infographics bring facts and data to life.
 

Creating calm (or excitement)


Think about some of the times a piece of visual communication influenced your mindset. Maybe you were browsing an e-commerce site and started to get so overwhelmed with options that you just gave up. Now, think about a beautiful catalog or magazine that left you feeling relaxed – maybe it was even like a mini-vacation for your brain. Elements such as layout, typography and photography style can help create a sense of calm that can slow readers down and make them more receptive to your messaging.

On the flipside, design can also create frenetic urgency that gets the audience to take immediate action. Remember what we said about color being important in marketing? One marketer A/B tested a landing page where the only difference was the color of a CTA button. The control page featured a button that was green (a color associated with earthiness and peace of mind); the test page had a flaming red CTA button. Guess what? More than one-fifth (21%) clicked on the page with the red button.
 

Winning hearts and minds


Even though we’ve just spent the last 550 words appealing to your reason, we’d love to show you examples of great design that can help you win over customers. In addition to design, we can also help you with strategy, copywriting, production and much more. Let us show you how an integrated campaign can appeal to both the hearts and heads of your customers!