Five Tactics for Developing Creative That Works
The back cover has a similar job to the front cover, plus the inclusion of a mailing panel. Use your back cover to sell several different price points in best-selling merchandise categories. By doing so, your catalog will appeal to a broad audience.
How long has it been since you’ve tested the creative on your covers? Have you reviewed the analysis from previous catalogs to help guide creative decisions? Creative that works can be determined only by understanding such data.
5. Ask other departments for relevant customer information that can help modify the elements of page design. Here’s an example: Ask your marketing team to identify what products, product categories and price points gain the greatest response from first-time buyers. Your creative team can use this information to design specific pages that appeal to such buyers. These data also are useful when designing covers to accommodate different versions, whether for first-time buyers, best customers, catalog inquiries or multichannel buyers.
Ask your merchandising team to note any irregularities or advantages with the products and positively incorporate the information. For example, if steel-toe shoes are running small or narrow, note that in the copy. If the products are packaged in resealable stackable containers, an inset photo demonstrating that is an excellent visual communication. Since the creative team typically doesn’t generate reports or compile data, they must rely on other departments to share the information.
Preparation is Key
Creative that works is achieved when relevant data are provided prior to layout and design. When the creative team is involved at the beginning of the process, consideration for the offers, audience and merchandise assortment can be incorporated into the design. Too often, for example, a creative team is told about front cover versions and offers at the end of page production. When this happens, you’re unable to take advantage of the team’s skill set. Instead the objective becomes: “Just find a spot and include it.”