ReTargeter Blog

Creative Matters Pt III: Color, Characters and Call to Action

In this installment of Creative Matters we will discuss several examples and how simple, yet effective, details can add to the value of your campaign. Below is a short collection of ads which have performed above average, netting click through rates of up to .32%. We have broken down these creatives into three areas where they succeed – Color, Characters and Call to Action.

Zendesk HelpDesk 2.0 Ad


A common theme in high performing creatives is vibrancy. Colorful ad units, on average, perform better than ads featuring subtle and muted tones. As you can see in the Zendesk ad (above) and SEOmoz ad (below), colors play a large role in attracting attention. While not all ads need to be filled with color, the Slidedeck ad (bottom) is a great example of how color can accent neutral tones like black and gray. No matter the content of the ad unit, the primary goal is to attract attention.



We often find that having characters, or images of people, in ads increases performance notably. SEOmoz (above) often utilizes Roger the Robot in their creatives and we have found a direct correlation between the use of Roger and a higher CTR. Strategically, using characters such as Roger adds a sense of humor, fun and friendliness to the brand. This ultimately creates a better response from users and is more inviting to click through. Attractive humans, dinosaurs, robots, pets – we don’t discriminate.

SlideDeck Try A Demo

Call To Action

While it may seem trivial due to an ads innate nature, we have found a very strong correlation between having an old fashioned button and a higher CTR. While you may assume, “It’s an ad, people will know to click it,” without a visual cue to do so, we find there is less chance of a click through. While the Zendesk and SEOmoz ads respectfully have no real traditional CTA, we have determined that their design still initiates clicking through other various tricks such as drop shadow, rounded corners and logo placement.

Other Great Factors:

All of these ads feature font choices that are simple and lend friendliness to the brand. Solid logo placement and layer effects which increase visual depth can also be seen. Ads which visually seem three dimensional can also perform extremely well due to how much they stand out from traditional 2d web space.

Do you think these three ads look similar? That’s because they follow similar creative guidelines that yield the best results with ReTargeting. Try following similar guidelines the next time you build creatives in house and AB test against your old creatives. You’ll be surprised at what you see.

If you haven’t read them already, don’t forget to check out:
Creative Matters Pt II
Creative Matters Pt I



Case Study – Watters

Watters Logo | ReTargeter

Watters is the brainchild of designer Vatana Watters. For over 30 years, it has been the leader in offering luxurious designer bridal gowns, innovative bridesmaids dresses, classic special occasion dresses for mothers of the wedding, and adorable dresses for flower girls and junior bridesmaids around the world. Selling primarily at trunk shows and in third-party […]

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