The Ultimate Graphic Designer’s Guide to Direct Response Ads

The Ultimate Graphic Designer’s Guide to Direct Response Ads

There is so much that goes into making beautiful designs. However, when it comes to ads, it takes more than just having an aesthetically pleasing design to get clicks. When it comes to ads, you should be designing with direct response in mind.

What does direct response mean?

Direct response refers to an action taken on your ad. Direct response ads should be designing with the goal of clicks in mind. There are certain design elements you can add and avoid to optimize the likelihood of your ad having a high CTR.

Different advertising platforms have specific best practices, like Google ads vs social media ads. Here is a brief guide on best practices when it comes to designing for direct response that can that can be applied to PMAX, Discovery, and Meta ads.

Creating an optimal ad for direct response can be broken down into 5 steps:

Whether you're a freelance graphic designer or work at a brand or an agency, it’s important to understand the brand and the audience. Reinforcing a brand's image is important in making your content recognizable to audiences, so adhere to the brand guidelines.

Branding Design Guide

The next step is to choose an image (or images) for your creative ads. Don’t just choose your favourite image from the bunch. Make sure your image choice checks off these boxes.

Image Selection Design Guide

If you’re working on a PMAX or Discovery image campaign, you will likely need to make the same image fit in landscape, vertical, and square formats. You might love a panoramic image, but if it doesn't look good in all the specs, it’s not the best image for this campaign.

Depending on what type of ads you're working on, you might need to add some text to your ads. Here are the ways to make your top-notch ad copy stand out.

Text on Image Design Guide

There's nothing that will drive a customer away faster than a button that leads to nowhere. Ad platforms like Meta Ads Manager will add a clickable button with a CTA underneath your ad so you don't have to worry about designing one on the graphic.

You can use graphic elements and colours to give your ad an extra boost to help catch the eyes of your customers.

Graphic Elements & Colour Design Guide

Keep an eye on what type of content and styles are trending at the moment (yes, that means scrolling Instagram counts as work). However, if you want to be more precise, don't be afraid to use Facebook’s Ad Library and have a look at competitor ads.

Staying up to date with best practices is essential, but the only way to know which design elements resonate best with your audiences is to A/B test everything!

A/B Testing Design Guide

Now you have a basic understanding of how to design for direct response. Add a new skill to your graphic designer resume and start designing!

If you still need help creating beautiful ads that get clicks, <imajery> has you covered. Check out our graphic design services.


Frances Dubreuil
Video & Graphics Editor

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