Every week, Boost brings you insights straight from the writers in our Creative Network. Writers share tips on how to inject more creativity into ads, best practices for writing ad copy, and more. This week, Dylan Barmmer, pen name “wordisborn” who has been an active writer in the Network for over five years, shares what makes a great online ad.

What makes a great online ad?


Like any form of art or creativity, there’s a certain amount of subjective analysis that goes into judging the quality of an online ad. What looks or sounds “great” to one might appear “generic” or “boring” or even “cheesy” to another.


But let’s remember one thing when it comes to evaluating advertising: its very purpose for existing in the first place.


An ad is a commercial endeavor. It exists to move product, boost sales, and increase brand awareness. That’s the bottom line. The rest is just…artistic. Ancillary. And, yes, subjective.


To this point, let’s take a look at some elements that will make an online ad great. In other words, the ingredients that go into building an effective ad. An ad that will compel those who view it to engage with your brand and its products.


A sense of intrigue: Some people like to use the old “fish story” analogy here. In other words, you need to “hook” your reader up front. And in order to “hook” them, you need to use the right kind of bait. It helps if that bait is fresh. Shiny. Eye-catching. Enticing. Alluring. A sense of mystery is always good. Even more so with people than with…fish.


A sense of urgency: You want your reader to feel not only motivated, but MOVED. You want them to feel like they simply can’t wait too long…or the opportunity will pass them by. You need to write with a sense of urgency. You need to convey a message that is passionate and powerful – but also focused and calm. Sounds hard? It can be. Especially in the narrow confines of a Google AdWords ad.


A clear purpose: What is the theme of the ad? What is the “vibe” or “aura” or “heart” of the message you’re conveying to your audience? What are you selling? How clear is your message? These are all questions that your ad should answer. Immediately and clearly.


A strong call to action: Ultimately, last but not least, you want to compel your reader to action. You don’t just want them to read your ad and think, “Well, that was cute.” You want them to feel compelled, motivated and convinced to DO SOMETHING. To make this happen, you have to move them. And you also have to make it clear just WHAT it is you want them to do.


There you have it. Some tips to follow to ensure that your ad is ultimately effective. If you’re an advertiser seeking to enhance the quality and performance of your ads, connect with us here at Boost Media. As the only cloud-based, people-powered platform that helps advertisers and agencies create, refresh and manage compelling ad creative at scale, we brilliantly blend ad creative and ad analytics.  We can help you create empowering advertising that gets real, remarkable results.


About Boost Media

Boost Media increases advertiser profitability by using a combination of humans and a proprietary software platform to drive increased ad relevance at scale.

The Boost marketplace comprises over 1,000 expert copywriters and image optimizers who compete to provide a diverse array of perspectives. Boost’s proprietary software identifies opportunities for creative optimization and drives performance using a combination of workflow tools and algorithms. Headquartered in San Francisco, the Boost Media optimization platform provides fresh, performance-driven creative in 12 localized languages worldwide.