If you are looking for banner ads for an online advertising campaign, PointBanner is an excellent design service. It is well within a small business budget. They promise — and deliver — fast turnaround time.
Recently I tried out the service to commission 3 animated banner ads for BizSugar, the small business social media site I acquired a few months ago. I got three ads for a total of $84 — not bad.
I was pleased with the results — so pleased that I decided to write about the experience here, thinking you might benefit from my experience. Here are some of the reasons I was so satisfied with PointBanner:
Easy-peasy service — Everything about PointBanner from the customer’s perspective is self-serve and automated online. You go to the PointBanner website, where you open an account in under 5 minutes. Then you choose how many banner ads you want, and in which sizes. You write out your design instructions, and pay with a credit card. Because it is self-serve and online, you can order banners late at night or very early in the morning (which is when I tend to do marketing activities like this).
When it comes to designing the ads, there’s a brief online form you fill out. You insert the text you want used for the ad. You can upload a logo or any other graphics. You can also write instructions such as “use the same look and feel as our website home page.” It took me about 15 minutes to think through what I wanted and write out my simple instructions.
Professional design, not a DIY tool — With PointBanner even though your interaction is all online, you are getting professional design services. This is not a do-it-yourself tool. Heck – even the best tool would be a waste of time in my hands.
Sometimes you just need something fast. The website interface makes the process of getting professional design help streamlined and efficient. It saved me hours. I did not have to search out designers and interview them, etc. — all of that was taken care of.
Inexpensive! — Different banner sizes work for different situations. The wonderful thing with PointBanner is that you can order a single banner ad in one size, or you can order value packs of the same ad in multiple sizes. I chose the Basic package, which was just $69 for 3 popular ad sizes. I wanted animated banner ads, which tacked on an extra $15. My total order came to $84 for three animated banner ads.
If I’d needed more ad sizes, I could have gone with one of their other packages. The best value is the Gold package, which gives you 13 different banner ad sizes for $139. That works out to less than $11 per banner ad (non-animated). You can’t beat that.
Fast turnaround of 48 hours — The site promises to deliver your banner ads within 48 hours from your order. Just as promised, I got an email that my banners were ready within 48 hours. At first I didn’t realize the banners were done, because the email notification got swept into my junk mail folder where it lay for almost 2 days — but it was there.
If you are willing to pay $10 extra for each banner, you can cut that time in half and get expedited service in 24 hours.
Up to 3 revisions — You get the banners submitted to your online account, where you can review each ad by mousing over the link (see image below).
If the ads are satisfactory, you can accept them and download them to your hard drive immediately. Once you download them, the order is closed.
If they are not quite what you envisioned, you have up to 3 rounds of revisions. You simply write instructions in a text box online asking for changes. I used all 3 of my revision rounds. Revisions are turned around promptly. In my experience the instructions were followed to the letter. They were fast, too — most of the revisions were returned in a few hours, or at the latest by the next day.
Personalized service — I plan to use the ads in several ways. One way is as house placements here on Smallbiztrends.com. After accepting and downloading my banners, I later realized the file sizes were too large to load into the FM Publishing ad system we use for house placements. So I wrote to PointBanner Support and asked if the ads could be compressed to under 100 kb in size. In under an hour, I got an email back from Guy Falkovitch, Vice President, saying it would be handled.
Helpful tips on the blog — If you do not know much about banner ads, the PointBanner blog offers helpful tips. Examples: 10 Banner Ad Design Tips and Five Design Tips for Animated Banner Ads.
Great results for the price — Given the price I paid for my banners I was very satisfied. I just wanted simple inexpensive banners — fast. No fuss, no muss. From start to finish the process took about one week elapsed time, including all 3 revisions. I could have cut a few days off of that had the initial email not gotten waylaid in my junk mailbox.
Here are my 3 banners, below. Click on each thumbnail image to open up the full size animated banner. You can judge for yourself.