With more ads, widgets and media content on a page than you can shake a stick at, if your advert isn’t creative enough or fails to evoke the right response from your audience, it will be ignored and you’ll lose money.
In a world of pop-ups and flashing gifs, how do you get your banner ads to stand out?
In today’s article, I will discuss how airlines are leveraging banner ads to communicate their message and drive traffic to their website.
To better understand the Southwest banners (pictured below), you first need to learn about its business. Southwest is a low-cost carrier focusing primarily on domestic flights with a huge market share: the American Southwest.
Here is one of their most successful banner ad sets:
The banner starts with an image of the Texas Memorial Stadium icon, which everyone who lives in Texas knows.
In the second part of the banner, they call out their audience by listing the city of Austin and referring to the state of Texas as The Longhorn Nation.
Serving this ad to people in the UK or Europe, for example, would have little impact due to the lack of personalization, but in Texas it will resonate with every local living in the state.
Whereas Southwest focus on personalization to win the click, Emirates use color and imagery to make their message hit home.
Along with red being Emirates’ brand color, the bulk of the ad is in royal red because:
- such a strong color will stick out on a website (as websites typically have a white or grey background); and
- in our minds, the color red is associated with excitement, and flying to a new place is exciting.
Finally, the banner ad targets people who fly to India and finishes with an Indian family smiling (further adding to the excitement).
Lufthansa take a different approach by going with a still image over animation.
- The emotional call out – ‘Bird watching with Daddy,’ which tries to imply that flying can be a fun experience.
- Call to action – The original message is reinforced by the ‘Enjoy the journey as much as the destination’ description, with a small but clear call-to-action button prompting the user to take a simple action.
- Father and son image (the outcome) – Message #1 and #2 are compounded into an image showing a father and son having a fun time together looking at planes, which is the outcome if the user clicks the ‘Book now’ button.
All in all, it’s a mini story told through a banner ad.
These are three simple ad sets that used images, color, and text to call out their audience. What colors, images, and text will you use in your next banner ad?