Saturday, November 11, 2006

Designing Ads That Get Read

It has been too many years since I learned this simple principle of ad design ergonomics so I cannot, at least today, find the reference material that taught me this -- but it continues to be a successful tactic for designing advertisements for law firms.

The study, as I recall, tracked eye movements as readers were flipping through magazines. Specifically the study tracked the eye movement of readers as they glanced at advertising pages. What they found was a distinctive pattern of where the reader first looked as the page came into view, and the path of their eye movement until the reader had flipped to the next page.

It is common knowledge that advertisers have only a fraction of a second to grab the attention of a reader. In this critical nano-second a targeted reader must find objects or words that encourages them to move from Point 1, to Point 2, to Point 3 and so on. As I recall from the study, the moment the reader looses interest their eyes stop tracking and the page is turned. Loose the reader at Point 1 and they are gone.

Think of this simple principle as you design your next ad. It is easy, and I can testify that it works!
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