Five Tactics for Developing Creative That Works
The primary function of your catalog is, of course, to sell merchandise. This goal supersedes any individual opinions about aesthetics. Successful creative strategies don’t necessitate a subjective discussion. What works is what sells.
While there isn’t one secret formula for success, here are five tactics that can help guide your creative decisions.
1. Foster a dependent relationship among your creative, marketing and merchandising teams. Give your creative team the tools it needs to develop a catalog that sells merchandise. Such tools include information gleaned from a square inch analysis and marketing promotions, as well as any merchandising changes such as new items, unique product features or bundling offers (e.g., sample packs, two-for-one deals) that require more page space to communicate the information.
For example, if your creative team knows that many products can sell in variety packs, it can design an attention-getting icon that quickly tells customers about the offer. The icon should align with the brand, fit several product uses and stay consistent throughout the catalog. One cataloger designed an icon to convey fire-retardant materials. The icon was a symbol communicating an important product feature as well as a safety benefit.
When your creative team understands your catalog’s overall purpose, team members can design pages to create a catalog that sells.
2. Develop a family of icons that visually communicates a product feature or benefit. Whether the icon is a yellow burst with the word “new” in it, or a screwdriver and hammer symbol to indicate that assembly is required, consistently use these icons throughout your catalog and Web site. Always provide a legend to indicate what each icon represents.
Takeaway tip: For your icons to maintain effective selling power, minimize the number of different icons included per page spread. If an entire page contains new products, don’t use the “new” icon with every single item. You’ll dilute the prominence of that icon.