How to Design a Poster That Looks Great and Performs Well

Advertisers have long used posters to convey a variety of information. Local businesses and event organizers have also used them with good effect for publicizing products and services, sales, and a large assortment of events ranging from funfairs to art exhibitions. Posters are popular despite the popularity of digital media because of a variety of reasons. These include high visibility to select target audiences, affordability, and credibility. However, as is evident, for posters to perform effectively, you need to design them right. Some insights and tips on effective poster design:

Ensure Readability 

You should be able to read a poster from around eight to ten feet distance as you will not like to approach a poster closely to read it. According to Smashing Magazine, poor readability makes the readers scared. The scientific way of arranging the text on a poster is to keep a headline in large bold letters right at the top to grab attention. The primary message should follow next, and it can be in smaller letters, but which can be read easily from a distance. Deciding on the size of the poster is critical for developing the design and choosing the text size. The location of the poster also plays an important role in its visibility and readability. The visual clutter around it may distract the audience, while the background and the posters may seem to merge if the color schemes are similar.

Pay Attention to Contrast

With people always being distracted trying to do multiple things simultaneously, your custom poster may be difficult to spot unless it has an attention-grabbing design. People tend to notice posters more when the design incorporates stark contrast to highlight the text or visual elements from the background. While black on white offers maximum contrast, you can use dark text on a light background to make your posters more aesthetically pleasing. Using negative space is also a good way of ensuring contrast. Additionally, you can use techniques of spacing, positioning, and orientation to ensure the desired contrast.

Use a Large Visual 

One of the main elements of a successful poster design is a large and striking visual that people can see from a distance. It can be a photo, a graphic or even text that looks fresh and interesting. Among the things that work well in a poster are illustrations, digital art, close-up of human faces, scenery, etc. However, you need to ensure that the visual has high relevance to what is being communicated in the poster. If you do it right, your visual will help catch attention and encourage people to approach the poster and read it. When used consistently, the visuals in the poster can reinforce your brand identity too.


The purpose of a poster is you get your point across. Keeping this in your mind will help you use visuals to attract attention, decide on the typography for superior readability, and use colors and contrast to stand out. Making the design scalable can help you to reproduce it in various sizes without having to redesign it. 

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