Is there a thing such as “too good” of a design?

Ok, so I just ran into this idea.

Right now I am designing materials asking for donations for a charity association dealing with child hunger/starvation and lack of education from underdeveloped villages from my country.

While at a roadblock and looking for ideas, a lot of the posters/materials I found on the internet asking for donations are poorly made even if created by designing/marketing companies. [There were also some, more recent, good ones but that’s a minority.]

Then it hit me, may there be a reason behind it? Are these posters designed intentionally with a cheap look?

Does a ‘bad’ poster give the idea that they didn’t even have the money to hire a professional designer while a good design may trigger the ‘they had money to hire a good designer but they are asking us for money?’ idea?

Are there real life examples when asking for donations, a bad design is more appealing to the public rather than a good one? [this gets crazier by the minute].

Is there something really happening in a viewers brain when they see a good, fine and bad design asking for donations. All with complete transparency of their activity and full credibility.

How does someone choose which of the 3 causes [with the good, fine and bad designed campaign] is more worthy of their money? Will they pick the good design thinking of the time and effort put into it or will they choose the bad one thinking they are more in need of the money cause they couldn’t even afford a decent campaign?


Depends on your audience. This is a social norm kind of question. Some people assume good quality ads automatically mean expensive. In the face of charities this means money wasted on administration. As a donating person you would like to give your donations towards the cause not the graphics designer.

Off course you and I know that a quality poster is perfectly possible to make with a equivalent budget. However, the average person does not necessarily see things this way and you are going for his money so you need to carter the target audiences psychology.

Source : Link , Question Author : Alin , Answer Author : joojaa

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