Great Ads #10 - We Can Solve It
Whether you hug trees for a living, or chop them down, if you're able to set aside your personal feelings and allegiances, you can appreciate this great ad. This ad by The Alliance for Climate Protection was clipped from the December 2008 issue of GQ.
What makes it so great? Let's take apart the elements.
The stopper effect is very strong. First off, it is impossible to miss the gargantuan headline treatment with its nearly 2-inch tall font. Reminds me a bit of the famous "Dewey Beats Truman" headline of old. "Free us." It is a simple message in a world of increasingly complex messages.
Next, I am taken by the unusual layout. You'll notice that the page is split vertically by image (on the left) and copy block (on the right). Most print ads today are designed with an image that spans the full page. If there is separate copy block is designed into the layout, the page is usually split horizontally with the image on top and copy below. In a metaphorical sense, this vertical split almost gives a sense of demarcation ... a new era, a change, etc ... if you think about a horizontal timeline or progression of time.
The visual image is stark and unusual. How often do we see an oil tanker in an ad? The cropping of the photo and the perspective supplied by the camera angle combine to communicate the massive size of that sea-faring vessel.
Finally, take a hard look at the ad copy. It is arranged in an unusual format, almost like a poem. Short lines, all contained to one row, and repetition are used to give the copy a choppy meter and an emphatic feel. And like all great ads, there is a distinct call-to-action or response mechanism. The advertiser clearly invites and urges the reader to go to the Web site to join their cause.
No matter how green you are, we can all be a little green with envy over the creative genius of this print advertisement.