AFDC Downgrade their visuals

The last AFDC ad was so magical , beautiful and mysterious. It grabbed you and engaged you , but most importantly it stuck! And I was so disappointed to see this!

afdc new adafdc new ad0001

Sometimes I feel like an overly critical person. I especially hate criticizing good causes, but I can’t help it.

One of my hobbies is going to random trade fairs and collecting marketing materials, and the most common mistake is too much text in combination with a non compelling design. Brevity is the soul of wit, especially in the modern advertising world, admittedly you can and must use text , but you must know how to make your reader want to read it. My favorite mental exercise is taking such marketing materials and thinking of ways to make it more compelling. Sometimes it is very simple, using more, or better images and using some text formatting techniques that break up the text and increase white space to make the overall impression less daunting.

Don’t push your message, because then your reader will just react by :”I don’t want to read this!”. And a lot of the time, when I see brochures, though I know that I need to read them, professionally , on a personal level that message flashes in my head, and even if I do read, I do not concentrate hard enough.

On the other hand, I do realize how hard it is to achieve that perfect balance between  design and content, I faced it in my work on too many times. And the designer in this case, most of the time, has a bigger role in making it powerful, than the content/copy writer. And such ‘communication artists’ who grasp this concept and work together with the content producer are very rare to find in my experience.

[Images published in 24:30 Magazine]

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  1. Liliane’s avatar

    this is a flyer? it’s not very strong, but I think there isn’t too much content, just a brief intro of who they are, a small description of the problem… but the first one seems to have more impact! (moufta3al aw ghayr moufta3al)


  2. Jo’s avatar

    Excellent point Darine!
    Always a thrill to read your stuff!

    I am sure that the previous campaign was better established & actually had something to say for the people & nation.

    Similar to Lilianes’ say that it has more impact, it sticks in your mind. That is the power.


  3. Saad Al Dosari’s avatar

    This is a very interesting point Darine ‘too much text in combination with a non compelling design.’

    It is unfortunate to see a lot of good brands and some non-profit organizations just fall into this trap. Most of their marketing materials need ages to read! Now, I do not mind reading them, but you have to catch my eyes first and give me a reason!


  4. Ameen’s avatar

    hello, im the designer who did the this,
    first of all i thank you for ur comments but i wanted to say that
    1- this is not a campaign
    2- this is a single magazine ad in a marketing magazine
    3- i dont think there is too much text in thi, while some campaigns such as “la kil lebnene 13 shajra iza kammalna heik biseer la kil 13 lebnene shajra” i could kill myself on the highway with an accident in order to finish reading that paragraph
    4- in the 2430 mag ad i just wanted to show a positive message something that gives people an optimistic message for reforestation
    5- there is balance, variety, unity, white spaces, smoothness, and very calm mood, catchy and strong enough
    PLUS change in layout by the magazine team which ruined some things
    Thanks :)


    1. Darine Sabbagh’s avatar

      Ameen ! Thank you so much for your feedback! I would love to see more of your work :)



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