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So, you are wondering which is the right visual for your campaign? When making such a decision, take into consideration the conclusions of cognitive, behavioral science and neuroscience on what makes people care: Provoking an emotional response should be done carefully. People will not respond if we simply evoke their sadness, guilt or fear. In the context of general desensitization, visuals that cause positive emotions - such as admiration, happiness or hope - are most effective.
Make sure that the artwork does not rely on a dry, edifying, dark or aggressive tone, but on the contrary – it connects to a human level by provoking empathy, it empowers and inspires hope. Don’t look for works that simply reflect the direness of a situation, or ‘what it is’ – be more interested in what ‘it could be’. Aim at inspiration, excitement, bringing hope, activation, aspiration.
An effective visual work follows these guiding principles:
The idea is original and not over-exploited.
The work is not overly explicit/obvious.
The artwork follows the key principles of effective visual communication.
The content is “evergreen” – that is, it can remain relevant for a long period of time.
The work is multicultural and diverse.
The work doesn’t show people as victims or casualties.
The work doesn’t reinforce prejudices and stereotypes.
The artwork does not try to say too many things.
The artwork is impactful – provokes empathy; is understandable by the general public; brings a meaningful message; has potential for viral/word-of-mouth effect.