This ad was run in newspapers by the Newspaper Marketing Agency whose research has shown that a majority of men read the Sports section first and, therefore, the whole newspaper from back to front. It uses several of the design principles we have learned about in class.
First, it swaps the positive and negative space. It was intended to be run in newspapers, which are predominantly black text on a white background. A large black box with white text in it is sure to grab the readers attention as they flip through the newspaper. The picture below shows the ad in context, where it is very clearly the most predominant object on this page out of The Guardian newspaper.
Second, the text is aligned into two distinct sections. There is the larger text in the very center of the ad to grab the readers attention and interest them in the ad (The reversed text is sure to stand out as wrong to the reader). Once interested, the reader will naturally look to the lower right corner where there is more text explaining the ad.
Finally, the sharp contrast achieved by only using black and white ensures the reader will look directly at the two areas of text.
This ad employs more than just good design to catch the reader’s attention. The reversed text is a mind trick to grab attention, but that arrangement of text also connotes something about the research and conclusions of the Newspaper Marketing Agency.