More than ever before, attention-getting graphics and photos are a critical piece of your marketing. It’s more likely that your audience will remember your message, if accompanied by good images.

Here are three essential graphic design tips for capturing and holding your audience…

1. Invest in quality photography

Contrary to popular belief, photos shot on an iPhone are not high enough quality/resolution for inclusion in your marketing materials. Take the money you would invest in stock images and hire a professional to photograph your business and your people. Make a shot sheet of images that you think capture the essence of your company, products, and services, and leave some wiggle room for the photographer to inject their own ideas and creativity as someone looking in.

IPhone photo resolution is often fine for online, as long as the subject matter makes sense and supports the copy.

2. Cut the Copy

More is not better when it comes to words on a page, a business card, or your website.

Copy-heavy marketing materials are cumbersome to read and overwhelm the recipient. We live in a sound bite society where people are busy and stressed, so make the most of your writing. Be specific, to the point, and leave the reader wanting more. After all, if you tell them everything before you’re face to face, they’re most likely to make up their minds without giving you the chance to paint a clearer picture of how you can meet their specific needs.

3.  Invest in a professional designer

Your logo is not just an icon; it’s your brand, so take time and invest in creating or enhancing it. Logos should have longevity, so your investment pays off as you utilize it to attract business and recognition over a long period of time. A professional brand specialist/graphic designer will lead you through the strategic process that is necessary to build a sustaining logo and other brand elements. Professional design will position you to stand out amid your competition and speak effectively to your target market.

Once the process is complete, be sure to request a “vector” file of your logo and other file formats, so printers, vendors, and partners can easily utilize them.

Here’s an example of how it all comes together:

When the Northern Kentucky Urban & Community Forestry Council came to CEL to create an educational campaign with supporting graphics, a campaign logo was at the top of our “to do list.” In order to get the target market to listen, stand up and implement tree care in their communities, we knew we needed to grab their attention first.

The Kentucky Roots campaign logo rose out of a desire to bank on the pride Kentuckians have for their state and empower them to care for trees to keep Kentucky beautiful. The shape of the state and the color of their rolling hills were brought together to speak to our audience creatively, effectively, and in a lasting way with short and effective copy and other images. The logo and brand message was pivotal in attracting and securing a major sponsor for the campaign and The Kentucky Roots campaign is positioned for longevity and growth – pun intended!