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Marketing’s Power Couple: Design and Copy

Every year companies and advertising agencies spend billions of dollars trying to create the perfect ad, whether it’s TV, print, or online marketing. Just imagine the pressure felt by advertisers when creating heavily anticipated Super Bowl commercials. Even if you are not a football fan, it’s hard to avoid the next-day analysis of which ads impressed and which ones flopped.

With so much pressure and your sales pipeline hanging in the balance, how can everyday Small to Mid-Sized companies hope to create ads and marketing collateral that connect with audiences and motivate them to buy?


The Marketing Power Couple

Aside from radio, all other marketing channels offer an opportunity to mix media. Whether it’s print, web, or even TV, graphics and words (referred to as “copy”) combine to create evocative messages meant to be memorable and inspire action.

The key is finding the right combination of design and words. In 1988, Nike launched one of the most successful brand campaigns in history. They opted for simplicity – a funny looking check mark and the words “Just Do It”. The Nike swish and those three famous words are still recognizable all over the world 28 years later.

Perhaps the words alone would have caught on or maybe the “swish” would have caused a sensation on its own. We’ll never know. What we do know is that together, they set a billion dollar industry on fire. That’s why design and copy are marketing’s power couple.

Design and Copy for Your Business

When the design (images, fonts, colors scheme, and structure) and the copy (the words) you use in your marketing campaigns are properly blended together, they create the right message, emotion, tone, value, and call-to-action for your audience.

How often do you throw away a flyer because it looks cheap? Or how often do you click away from a website because the content was confusing or it just didn’t grab you?

When the quality of the design and the copy do not match, your message gets watered down. Considering that every dollar you spend on marketing is a dollar you are looking to get back multiple times over (ROI), it’s important to make sure your visuals and content are top-notch.

Who Designs and Who Writes?

This is probably the most important sentence in this blog: With few exceptions, graphic designers are not writers, and copywriters are not designers.

These two professionals are like plumbers and electricians. The fact that your electrician can repair a faulty wire, does not mean that he or she can install a new faucet. The training, skill-sets, and tools are different.

Let’s say you hire a graphic designer to create a brochure for you. This person is not a professional copywriter. He or she may take your existing copy and do the best they can with the information you gave them or they may ask you for new copy. You can end up with a gorgeous brochure that doesn’t make much sense to your target market.

Similarly, you are really gambling with your marketing dollars when you ask a copywriter to create a brochure for you. Yes, they will likely craft a beautiful and compelling message, but without the right design to catch their eye, those eloquent words may never be read.

Hitting a Home Run

The real magic and the big bang for your marketing budget happens when you hire the right team to create your marketing collateral.

When you hire a copywriter along with a designer they will brainstorm ideas with each other to come up with the most creative way to get your message across. Once the concept is formulated and they have a direction, they go off on their own and start designing and copywriting.

The designer will start researching the current brand and photos that best represents the headline for the product or service. Meanwhile the copywriter starts writing the verbal content in alignment to desired result and audience.

Following the earlier example of the brochure, you will end up with an attractive piece of collateral that gets picked up, is read with interest, and motivates your desired action.

Spend Your Marketing Dollars Wisely

When hiring outside help to create marketing collateral for your company, ask who will be in charge of design and copy. Make sure you understand who will create these individual elements, and what responsibility, if any, you have in contributing graphics or copy. Ideally, you want to hire a team with a dedicated graphic designer and copywriter.

It is immensely powerful when the mind of a visual artist and the mind of a wordsmith come together to focus on your brand. By blending creativity and market knowledge from these two pillars of communication, your marketing message is refined and transformed beyond what one person can conceive on their own.


Laura Sayegh is the President and Chief Design Officer of Laura’s Design Studio.

Whether you are a start-up or established business, Laura’s Design Studio has the experience and talent to create messages that make an impact in your market.

Laura’s Design Studio is comprised of internal and external graphic designers, copywriters, and programmers who work collaboratively as a team to provide a one-stop resource for your marketing and advertising campaigns.

We believe in efficient creativity and providing an exceptional client experience. With Laura’s Design Studio, you get amazing results for all your Branding, Digital, and Print needs.

Are you ready to bring out the best in your brand?

Dream It, Design It, Do It!

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