Why Creative & Design Matters in the Digital Age
June 7, 2016 | Contributed by: Joe Morsello
Local media and marketing discussions are generally focused on ROI (online-to-offline) and audience targeting (beacons, big data mobile, etc.). Meanwhile, design and creative – the moment where the customer meets the brand or business – is sometimes overlooked or taken for granted.
The Internet is full of clutter and everyone is in competition for attention online. Given the democratization of publishing and advertising online, pushing out content has never been easier. As consumers, we are inundated with content and information making it much harder for brands and businesses to stand out.
From the user perspective, we have come to use our digital time economically. Everything we see online is put to the “eye test” and quickly we determine if a particular piece of content is worth our attention. For example, according to an Adobe study, 38% of people will stop engaging with a website if the content/layout is unattractive.
Increasingly, design is a major differentiator for brands today. What a business looks like and sounds like online can sometimes influence prospects as much as the products and services offered. This is particularly true in industries where product differentiation is difficult. Therefore, it is at the brand level that businesses can separate from their competition.
For this reason, look and feel in all digital and print assets need to consistently communicate the brand in a visually dissimilar way compared to competitors. But difference without design expertise and proficiency can hurt the brand, as the Adobe stat above shows. So a balance between design principles and a unique visual identity is the goal.
Having re-branded as an organization and built an online brand (MarketingBitz) from the ground up in the past year, we are well aware of the challenge to differentiate. In order to support local media publishers, agencies and technology providers, the Local Search Association (LSA) is now offering a variety of creative services to members and non-members.
As the examples above show, LSA designs reports, display ads, websites and infographics. In addition, LSA can help you create customer pitches, custom reports, circulars/fliers, social media imagery and many other print and digital graphics. In many ways, the LSA Creative product suite can serve as an alternative or supplement to a creative agency.