Seasonal Graphic Design Inspiration: 4 Ideas That Sell


Most businesses see a spike in activity around the holidays, whether they sell fruit baskets, home furnishings, or even automotive parts. In order to facilitate these sales, though, brands need skilled graphic designers who can adapt to the changing seasons and holidays. If you’re a designer serving clients’ up to the minute marketing needs, hitting the mark means knowing the seasonal signals that sell. These four themes can give you an edge in appealing to clients and customers alike.

Find Your Summer Aesthetic

Summer is right around the corner, but with the exception of Memorial Day and Fourth of July, the season is a bit short on innovative aesthetic schemes – you can only put so many flags on fliers. Luckily, updated versions of more generic summer design schemes, such as swimming pools, beaches, and ice cream cones, can all perk up summer advertising. You may not be able to take your customers to the beach, but you can put them in a sunnier state of mind.

Look To Tradition

Most seasonal marketing leans heavily on tradition in order to be successful. That’s why beaches and ice cream never go out of style in the summer. Don’t be afraid to reach even further back to channel a sense of nostalgia. During the winter, for example, channel classic home facades with illustrations of the tapered candles commonly displayed in windows. Other classic aesthetic choices include holly and mistletoe and glittering snowflakes, while fall marketing can be spruced up chrysanthemums, pinecones, and cornucopia.

Rethink The Packaging

A lot of graphic designers today are divorced from the packaging process, since many work almost exclusively with digital clients. If you have the opportunity to work with clients on physical packaging, though, this can be a great opportunity to make a seasonally appropriate impact.

Start with the label. A great label uses such elements as spacing, color, and font to communicate with customers. Even changing the color of the text or adding a simple seasonal element to the background, like adding snowflakes behind a traditional mascot or changing the color paper used for the tag. It’s a simple approach, but one rooted in the power of seasonal messaging.

Similarly, the holidays are also a great time to upgrade a client’s packaging so that it’s better for gifting. Tea that normally comes in a box might be packaged in a tidy, seasonally themed tin, perfect for gifts to teachers, friends, and relatives. Special packaging also adds appeal by making an ordinary product into a limited edition commodity, by combining a recognizable brand with an unexpected element.

Don’t Ignore The Trends

When it comes to seasonal branding, trendy touches tend to be among the least powerful thing you can do to reach customers. Implementing elaborate typography, for example, might wake up a tired website that’s stuck in a rut, but no one is looking for a big revamp during the holidays. Rather, at those times they’d prefer to see a slight product tweak, such as a seasonal flavor or a special sale.

If you are going to shift towards a trendier design at a significant time of year, opt for a trend that offers a blast from the past instead of one that plays with quirky futurism. Mid-century modern-inspired graphics are playing well this year, and are much more familiar and accessible than some elaborate 3-D graphic or over the top animation.

Businesses rely on seasonal sales because the campaigns offer a greater ROI than other marketing efforts. Help them make the most of their investments with smart seasonal styles.