Poster Advertising: What Works and What Doesn’t

College Poster Advertising

Use evocative, eye-catching images when engaging in college poster campaigns. The poster will capture students’ attention and generate brand awareness.

There’s a lot of advertising that takes place on a college campus. It makes sense, the majority of college students have recently left home and generally speaking have a lot of discretionary spending money. They want to have a good time and live the college experience, and they are willing to pay to make this happen.

That said college students are discerning about how they choose to spend their money. The other day I was on campus looking at one of the many campus bulletin boards and I was drawn in by a particular poster advertising an upcoming African dance, music, and fashion exhibition. Since I have no ties to African culture and no particular interest in dance, music, and fashion, I began to analyze why this particular poster caught my eye.

From a technical standpoint, the poster evokes an aura of quality and professionalism. It measures approximately 11 x 14 in size and is made of thick cardstock—which helps prevents wrinkles, tears, and wind damage. When a poster looks of quality, more people tend to think the company or organization will provide them with a higher level of service or a higher quality product.

The composition itself was very provocative to the eye. On one half of the canvas was an African woman in an elaborate tribal headdress; she stands with her hands on her hips, her face is in profile and she looks forward intently. Her gaze leads you into the other half of the poster, which describes in dramatic, bold font the details of the performance. This poster succeeds on many levels. There is much truth to the adage ‘a picture speaks a thousand words’. This is especially true for college students, who are often in a rush trying to get to class on time. Many times they won’t take the time to stop and read a poster; a picture is much easier to scan and if it’s an interesting enough image it will lead them into the rest of the advertisement. This poster did that beautifully. I have no idea as to whether the actual performance will be entertaining, but the poster sure succeeded in making me want to go and find out.



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