06 October, 2011

Polyvalent Print Ads

We're working on a print ad for the Polyvalent. Here are our top three versions. Which one do you like best? Or do you have a better idea?

Come to think of it, should we even bother with this? Some of us think that VO should only advertise online.  Ten years ago I read about 20 magazines and two newspapers. Today I read all periodicals on line (but still prefer paper books). Is print advertising still worthwhile or are we just wasting trees?



27 comments:

Le Cagot said...

I like the middle one. Print advertising might only be worthwhile in publications that are given away at bike shops.

James Losey said...

I prefer the first one, the quote is distracting from the otherwise simple design of the advertisement. Additionally, the definition of Polyvalent doesn't seem to matter as much as the potential of what you can do with it.

john said...

I agree those who say you should stick with online advertising. That said, I like the second one, but I would drop the quote from Outside Magazine.

Anonymous said...

Interesting the suggestion to drop the quote from Outside. I would think that quote in itself is worth the whole ad! #3, please.

John said...

I like #3. Regarding print or online, what percentage of your sales come from shops vs. your website? Rather than print media, perhaps you could do posters? Also, there is a typo - versitile should be versatile.

Antoine said...

I'd like to see these with the second bike turned around (going left).

Antoine said...

On the third poster : versitile -> versatile

Antoine said...

I like the first one best, though I would add the definition from the third. Maybe smaller, like a footnote (it is a poster, not a loud ad)

Anonymous said...

#2 is the best. Tells the story, looks clean doing it.

#1 doesn't describe it enough. It looks like there are multiple models available.

The "dictionary" text of #3 turns me off. Plus, a quote is an odd thing to include in a definition.

Print advertising is still valuable. Bicycle Times, Urban Velo, Bicycle Quarterly... although Jan seems to have it out for you.

Anonymous said...

I like the top one. The old "less is more" approach.

I'm sure those aren't the finished products buy you do know none of them say "Velo Orange", right?

ekr said...

This ad is confusing.
I'm not sure what you are trying to sell, is it the concept of versatility?
Does the consumer know that they need to build their own bike from the frame up, if they want one of the bikes in the image?
The images look like a clip from a catalogue, with no inflection or passion.
Inflection and passion is what you should sell. It is strong in your company and in your business philosophy.

-also, is there hard evidence that states your profits will increase from placing the ad, or do you guys just want to do it for fun? either one is fine.

Anonymous said...

I like the symmetry of #3. Print advertising has staying power, and gives the impression the business is more than a transient, fly-by-night operation. I have seen and appreciated your ads on paper in the past.

Anonymous said...

Hurrah for print ads. I'll go with #3.

Gunnar Berg said...

wastin' trees.

Anonymous said...

Print is far from dead, and there are plenty of millions of advertiser dollars still being spent on creating and placing print ads, because it pays off. You just have to be smart about your choices. That said, I don't think these ads sell the bike, because the message isn't there. What you want to do is communicate what you're trying to do with your images, something like:

ONE FRAME, MANY POSSIBILITIES...

[3 bikes]

THE VELO ORANGE POLYVALENT: WHAT DO YOU NEED IT TO BE?

—JKS

Anonymous said...

Save a tree, skip the printed bike shop flyers...isn't there enough crap on the shop counters already???
Once the word starts to spread even more than it has, VO's Poly will promote itself, provided it's a superior product. Grassroots get's my vote.

Anonymous said...

I prefer #2. But might you streamline it? Example:

"Polyvalent means 'multi-purpose.' Set it up as a city bike, a commuter, or a weekend touriste."

Or maybe this:

"Polyvalent means 'multi-purpose.' Set it up as a city bike, a commuter, or a weekend touriste. Outside magazine calls it 'easily the most versatile bike of dozens we tested.'"

(As for #1: Why say what the bike isn't? Also, you assume your viewer knows and cares what exactly an average green machine is. Yawn.)

Meaux said...

I would like to see all your products in print. I know it's an added cost to your business, but a quarterly news letter with a catalog would be nice. The big mail order guys are still sending out printed material, so it must still work. cheers, mt

Green Path Cycles said...

I don't think print ads are a waste of time. I also think that it might be a good poster.

I agree, too, with Anon, and the idea for different wording:

ONE FRAME, MANY POSSIBILITIES...

[3 bikes]

THE VELO ORANGE POLYVALENT: WHAT DO YOU NEED IT TO BE?

—JKS

That being said, I also really like the Green Machine message, so maybe take #1 and add in the text above at the bottom.

Anonymous said...

How about the bare frame with the three possible builds below it. That would be a clear message of what you're offering.

mike said...

FWIW, I know about you solely thanks to a print ad in Bicycle Times.

Anonymous said...

The suggestion of the tag line "One Frame, Many Possibilities" is a good one. Then follow it up with the quote from Outside, the Polyvalent and Velo Orange names. Skip the rest of the text, which lacks any kind of punch or catchiness.

Your photos are unfortunate. The angles of the seats and brake hoods on the top two builds may suit someone's personal preference, but they are not photogenic and just look sloppy here. Cranks and pedals are not level, and valve stems are willy nilly. Consistent and thoughtful placement of these is standard practice for any bike profile shot. Your white background burns out a lot of the edge details of the bikes, making them hard to see. It's almost as if I'm trying to look at the bike while staring at the sun.

Plus, these photos are rather repetitive & boring. The angles are all the same, and the differences between the builds are too subtle to come across quickly when rendered at print size to anyone who doesn't know the VO catalog intimately. You need to have sexy, dramatic photos that emphatically show the differences between builds. I know that fenders are one of VO's signature offerings, but you don't need to show them on every build. Likewise, get some variety in the tire choice. There is so much potential for playing with the Polyvalent as a flagship brand and product for VO; you need to have some fun with it.

Velo Orange products (and the Polyvalent in particular) are great, but the concept, level of photography and graphic/font design of these ads does them little justice. I respectfully submit that you need to face the reality of VO having outgrown its in-house branding and graphic design capabilities, which just aren't equal to the standard of the products, personality, and level of customer service of your company. It really is time to enlist the help of a professional, proven designer.

My apologies for the tough love.

Anonymous said...

I hate to admit it, but the top bike in the ad did catch my eye with its really high mounted brake levers and long cables. I feel like a pretentious jerk just mentioning it, but I did find that a bit distracting. Nothing wrong with setting up a bike like that, but looks sort of unkempt for the ad. Impressed with the Polyvalent, though!

Eric said...

#3

VeloOrange said...

Thanks for everybody's help. You'll see the new ad in print in a couple of months.

Leigh Ann Krisitiansen said...

I like the first ad.

As for print... Dead?? Not hardly! I own a small media buying agency that specializes in print classified ads in newspapers. Rates are lower than ever and readership in hometown, community papers or niche products are very good! My clients pull better leads from their print ads than their online ads, too! There are some great bargains to be had in newsprint for certain.

ktz said...

a little late as usual (busy doing print ads of my own!).
I really think the beauty of Velo Orange lies as much in the details as it does in the full ensemble. You produce many high quality products that pay homage to those who paid attention to the details. Velo Orange advertising should show these details.