The Difference Between Creative Strategy & Graphic Design

Online advertising has a very broad reach and can be utilized as a way to increase growth and keep your advertising efforts focused. While you can advertise across or on multiple channels like Google, Bing, and Amazon, when you start advertising on social media platforms, you’re connecting with audiences that already spend 3+ hours on social media. But how do you set yourself up to successfully advertise on social media? You start implementing creative strategy and design. 

Utilize the skills of your social media designer and strategist

Paid social media advertising is an essential tool because it can help you reach your target audience and promote your products or services in an engaging, impactful, and memorable way. But to create effective advertising, several elements must be considered such as creative strategy and graphic design. While graphic design is often considered the “face” of a creative or ad, creative strategy plays a more critical role in shaping the roadmap, overall messaging strategy, and success of any ad campaign. 

But what’s the difference between creative strategy and design, and why does it matter for your e-commerce brand? Read more to discover the strengths that each element brings to your campaigns and how they take your advertising to the next level.

What is Creative Strategy & Graphic Design?

 No campaign is successful without creative strategy. It’s the driving force behind any advertising campaign—it takes you on a journey, providing the clear roadmap you need to achieve the desired outcome. Crafting this strategy involves defining the target audience, analyzing their needs, wants, and behaviors, data analysis, conducting market research, and developing messaging that resonates with them. Your strategy also considers the competition, your product or service’s unique value proposition (UVP), and your overall brand identity.  Graphic design, on the other hand, is the visual expression of creative strategy. It involves your social media designer creating the visual elements of the campaign that will effectively communicate the message to the target audience. These visual elements include:
  • Typography
  • Color palette
  • Imagery
  • Layout
  • Format (videos, gifs etc.)
Your creative strategy provides a framework for the graphic designer to follow to ensure that the visuals align with your brand’s broader strategic goals, analyze which creatives are working, iterate, develop new concepts for ads, and run creative tests for new angles and messaging. When strategy and design work together, you’ll start creating effective advertising campaigns that increase engagement and drive conversions for your business.  

Why Creative Strategy Matters in Paid Social Media 

 Social media platforms are constantly evolving with new features, algorithms, and trends. A well-defined strategy helps businesses stay relevant and up-to-date with these changes as they come. In other words, it enables you to pivot your content strategy quickly and effectively to take advantage of new opportunities. When you have a solid creative strategy, it keeps your business focused and aligned with its objectives.

Having a strategy also provides a more data-driven approach to branding. By researching the target audience and market trends, a creative strategist can develop messaging that resonates with the audience and aligns with their values and aspirations. Sticking to a data-driven approach will help e-commerce brands create more impactful and effective campaigns that drive results. Graphic design, on the other hand, often relies on subjective opinions of what looks good or aesthetically pleasing. While aesthetics are important, they alone cannot drive the results you’ll achieve when you combine strategy and design together. 

In other words, just because your client likes copy written a certain way or ads designed in a particular style doesn’t mean the ads will convert. Oftentimes, the ads buyers, creative strategist, graphic designer, and client will think the ads are ideal, but they can end up being the worst performing if they don’t have a solid strategy backing them. It’s important to remind your clients that the data will point to what works and what doesn’t and that they often shouldn’t let their opinion guide the strategy or the design.

Using Strategy to Inform the Design

Let’s say your goal is to position your brand and prove that you have a premium product in a crowded, saturated market. To do this, you need an experienced creative strategist and social media designer working together toward a common goal that uses the strategy to inform the design. Prioritizing and developing a solid creative strategy before diving into the design phase provides the foundation you need to create a well-rounded and successful advertising campaign. When you’re trying to prove to your audience that you have a premium product, part of your strategy and design should include the following:
  • Developing messaging that emphasizes quality and luxury
  • Identifying target audience segments that value these attributes
  • Designing visual elements that clearly convey these values
Why is it ideal to let the creative strategy inform the design? If your brand were to rely solely on graphic design, you may end up with a visually striking but ultimately confusing or irrelevant design that does not resonate with the target audience or convey the desired message. This can lead to ineffective campaigns that fail to achieve your goals.

The Omnitail Difference

It’s easy to pour money into social media ads without fully understanding the impact their performance has on your business. That’s where The Omnitail Difference comes in: A transparent, full-service paid social media agency that focuses not only on media buying, but also on creative strategy and development. Our unique, multi-faceted approach will scale the success of your campaigns—and your business.

We are committed to making your paid social advertising work for you and your bottom line through data-driven and creative strategies, continuous testing and optimization, and honest reporting that measures success through overall profitability instead of vanity metrics.

Are you looking for a social media advertising agency that can truly take your marketing efforts to the next level? Our expert team is ready to provide your brand with a paid social media strategy, strategic blueprints for creative development, and compelling content that drives results.

Paid Social Media that Drives Your Success

While graphic design is crucial to the success of your advertising campaign, it must be informed by a well-defined creative strategy to effectively position the product, communicate the message, and create a roadmap that drives the success. 

Let us remove your burden and create an effective creative strategy and develop creative assets for you. We’ll help build the foundation you need to increase engagement, drive conversions, and achieve your goals. Reach out to our paid social media advertising agency for a creative audit today

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