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Examine Magazine Covers to Create Better Pins

Day 17 for 31 Days to a Better Pinterest Page. Find out how magazine covers can help you create amazing pins. #PintalysisAcademy Welcome to day 17, of the 31 Days to a Better Pinterest Page. For day 17, you’re going to be examining your favourite magazines and seeing how you can take what you learn about magazine covers and using them for your pins.

Don’t Be Afraid to Venture into the World of Design

I’m not a graphic artist, nor am I professional photographer. I’m learning about the principles of graphic design and some basic photography tips to help me improve the quality of the pins I create.

It used to be just enough knowing how to write a blog post. Then you needed to know how to write amazing headlines within 140 characters, and now it’s about creating visual content that will grab the attention of customers in less than a third of a second.

It’s important to try to get your pins to stand out from billions of other pins and to help them get more repins. And that means that learning a little bit about color theory and design are important.

Curalate came out with a report that suggested that redish orange coloured pins received twice as many repins as blueish coloured pins. Brand pins that contained no faces had 23% more repins than those that did have faces.

You can read all about the report on Curalate’s Tumblr blog. 

These are great tips that can help guide you in your journey for creating pins that are better at converting visitors into customers.

Magazine Covers Are Pins

One of the aspects of design and marketing that I like to study is magazine covers. Magazine covers have been around longer than social media has, and can teach us a lot about visual design.

If you think about it, pins are a lot like magazine covers. Usually magazines are put into a vertical format “scrolling” format next to other magazines. They only have a few seconds to grab your attention before you move onto the next magazine cover (or off to pay for your groceries at the cashier till), and magazines are vertically designed.

Magazine covers have been mastering the art of grabbing your attention for decades, which is why we can learn a lot from them for our own pins.

Two Aspects of Magazine Covers You Should Study

There are two aspects of a magazine cover that I really enjoy.

One, it’s the visual aspect. Take a look at some of your favourite printed magazines and take a look at how they design their fonts, the colour choices that they make for their foreground and background, and the types of images that they use. This can offer you some great insight for your pins can be carried out.

I do believe that branding is important. I’m still trying to find a design that I can create that I feel fits my brand, and I feel that it’s a bit of a process. So far I’ve found that using yellow with red gives my pin’s a distinct look.

I also ended up studying Men’s Health to see how they design their covers and have taken elements from their design and incorporated into mine.

Men's Health Magazine

The second aspect of magazines that matter are the headlines that they put on their cover. While pretty pictures can lure people into looking at a magazine cover, it’s a good headline that’s going to make people pick it up, read it, and buy it.

Here are some examples of headlines from different magazines that peaked my curiosity.

1)      Men’s Health Singapore – Scrawny to Brawny in Just 8 Weeks

2)      Conde Nast Traveller – Hot List. 154 Best New Hotels in the World

3)      Vogue Magazine – Secrets Behind the World’s Most Beautiful Bodies

4)      Oprah Magazine – How to Get Better with Age

5)      Shape Magazine – 4 Moves to Fab Abs

Pscyhology Today Headline.

What’s interesting about people who design magazine covers for big name magazines and create the headlines for them is that they are paid professionals. They’ve usually been in the industry for years, and understand what works and what doesn’t work.

Looking at magazine covers that are related to your industry, and target audience, especially magazines that are still surviving even thought it’s the age of digital. It can give you valuable insights into what your target audience enjoys looking at and reading.

Don’t Create Pins that Look Exactly Like Magazine Covers

Now, I’m not suggesting that you go out and create a pin that looks like a magazine cover. As a matter of fact if you are going to create pins that are like a magazine cover, ensure that there’s on main focal point to start.

If you create a pin with too much information on it, it can be hard to see, especially on smaller screens on smartphone.

Day 17 Actionable Step

Take about 30 -45 minutes to go and visit a book store and take a look at the different magazine covers. Take a look at sports magazines, at travel magazines, at fashion magazines, take a look at them. See what type of elements that you like and don’t like.

If you can’t go to book store, then take that time to look at different magazine covers on the Internet.

Additional Resource:

Here’s an article that offers tips for creating magazine covers. Great practical information on the type of images and colors to use for a cover, and tips and tricks that the magazine industry has been using for decades.

Are there magazine covers that you enjoy looking at or reading? What is about them that appeals to you. Share your thoughts and wisdom in the comment section. Looking forward to reading your answers.

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Vincent Ng is the founder of MCNG Marketing, and the author of Pinterest to Profits with Pintalysis and the host of the Pinterest podcast, Pictures to Profits. You can grab your free e-book on How to Search Optimize Your Pins for Pinterest and Search Engines."
  • mathfour

    I’m excited about doing this, but I don’t have much time to find a magazine rack. So it might have to wait until the weekend (yeah, I’m a few days behind).

    Instead, though, I’m going to check this off by browsing Pinterest and looking at pins – not for pinning, but for elements of the pins themselves. I tend to do my headlines/images/watermarks all the same. I’m going to check out how others do it.

    • Vincent Ng – MCNG Marketing

      I think that’s a great idea Bon. There’s so many different pins out there that many of them have great design and there’s so much to learn from them. Thanks again for all your comments.