Restaurant covered in effective QSR marketing POP design.

POP Design—The Quick QSR Marketing Transaction Booster

4 proven elements of effective POP design–that are rarely followed.

I’m sure you’ve noticed. Everyone from the CEO to the mailroom clerk is an expert on POP design. Why?  Because it’s easy to change. “Add this here. Make this bigger. Make that smaller. Oh, and add this too.” But there is one word that describes perfect POP design—Simple. That’s it. Simple. Think about it. You’re really working with simple elements—a product and many times a price. The real thinking and focus in POP design are the following 3 points:

  • What to say. It needs to be compelling.
  • How to say it. It needs to be short and sweet.
  • How to show it. A single product shot? A product grouping? A close-up on the key ingredients?

Believe it or not, these three points can take a remarkable amount of thinking and testing, and should. The design then becomes the easy part. The Point of Purchase Advertising International (POPAI) has invested years in the field defining the standards of effective POP.

Here are 4 of the key elements per POPAI:

1. Color There is no magic color that increases sales or sparks customer interest. Bolder, contrasting colors are the best. Do not use bright colors against white—yellow on white, orange on white.  

2. Fonts Just as in color, there is no magic font.  But, avoid serifs and script.  Think readability.

3. Multiple messages This is probably the most ignored POP FACT. As a rule, the more messages displayed, the less effective they become. If there are several messages for a customer to try to sort through, interest is lost quickly. Your customers should be able to understand your message instantaneously.

4. Size of Font The second most ignored POP FACT. Your font must be readable from the distance your POP is from your customer. Measure the distance from the front of your store to the street. From the side of your store to the drive-thru traffic lane in your parking lot. There are numerous sources on-line that will tell you the optimum font size for any distance.

So think clean, bold, impactful. Many times, the subtleties of a wood grain background or morning sunrise background are completely lost in this medium. They look beautiful on the designer’s computer screen and on the color print out. But from 30 feet away at 10 miles per hour they are a distracting blur.  

Some simple don’ts: 

  • Don’t add badges, emblems, little secondary logos.
  • Don’t over design.
  • Don’t use or add small print.
  • Don’t use script or fancy fonts.

Remember, POP has the same basic characteristics as a billboard, not a print ad.  

photo credit: ch.weidinger via photopin cc

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