Get organized. Save money. Lose weight. Read more. We’ve all fallen for the “new year, new me” myth and resolved to better ourselves at some point or another. But even the most ambitious resolutions still provide important guidance for the year ahead that we hope to have.
This year, HZers are channeling this optimism into their craft. And now that we’ve published the resolutions on the Internet, they’ll be forced to stick with them.
The Resolution: Choose more diverse photos.
The Reason: It’s past time for more diversity in ads, and it can start with the way we select stock photos. I myself tend to choose photos of younger characters, women with bright lipstick, and men with beards. I'd like to focus on diversity in ethnicity, beauty, and age. Models are out. Real humans are in.
The Resolution: Answer the “why” before figuring out the “how.”
The Reason: It’s easy to let routine lead you. In 2018, I want to take a more considered approach to everything. It sounds obvious, but when you’re caught in a pattern, it’s easy to forget to stop and check yourself. I want everything I do to have a clear purpose and rationale—to be necessary, rather than noise.
The Resolution: No more banner ads. Ever
The Reason: Users have learned to ignore them, especially on mobile. What’s worse, they affect your brand’s image. Flashy ads cause frustration, and accidental clicks are annoying—not emotions you want associated with your brand. They don’t work and everyone hates them.
The Resolution: Think vertically!
The Reason: More and more often, our clients and social team are requesting posts in vertical format due to the move away from desktop sizing and the scrolling of our audience. Vertical videos are gaining ground, too, thanks to Snapchat and Pinterest. Video clips need to grab attention quickly as our audience scrolls, and footage needs fill the extra vertical space.
The Resolution: Branch out.
The Reason: This year, I’d like to learn more about designers’ process and how to “speak” design—to be a more effective copywriter by thinking about how copy can enhance design, and vice versa. I’d also like to learn how others in my department approach concepting, and try applying some of their strategies to my own process!
The Resolution: Stop meaningless posts.
The Reason: With an abundance of algorithms that shape how often content is shown in your audience’s feed, the importance of one impactful, service-driven piece of content that your audience wants to engage with is more important than three meaningless posts that receive little engagement.
The Resolution: Avoid problematic tropes.
The Reason: Tropes can be a handy shortcut—they tell half the story for you by relying on audience assumptions—but they are also lazy. Even worse, they can perpetuate the very stereotypes we should be fighting against. Let’s think more highly of our audience. They’re smart (most of them). They can think more deeply about what an ad is saying. The strongest benefit for me, personally, is to realize that I can promote equality through something as simple as an ad—and that’s pretty powerful.
So, what are your work resolutions? Tweet us @HZDG, then write it down, post it up, and evaluate how it changes the way you approach projects throughout the year.