Gestalt’s Principles In Marketing And Advertising

Gestalt’s Principles In Marketing And Advertising

Introduction: Gestalt psychology is a visual perception theory developed by a German psychologist in 1920. It tries to explain how our minds make chaotic images within seconds. It’s a visual communication design, which generally relates to design projects with specific objectives. Gestalt has five principles that are applied to visual marketing and it gives creative designs as well.

Five of Gestalt’s principles are as follows:

  • Law of Closure Law of Proximity
  • Law of Continuity
  • Law of Similarity
  • Law of Figure and ground

Law of Closure: If one or more parts of an object are missing, either hidden or absent then the human brain tends to perceive forms and figures for the complete appearance of that object. It’s called the Law of Closure.


We tend to ignore gaps and complete contour lines. In the image above there is no complete circle but our mind fills in the missing part to create shapes and images.

Use of Colours and Closure in advertising:

In reality, there are many visual elements that we can use to help us form effective closure. The closure is creating a strong contrast between the background colours also strong contrast as well.

In the IBM logo, our brain combines each of horizontal bars and to create a single image of the IBM logo.

Law of Proximity: – In short law of proximity describes how the human eye perceives connections between visual elements. Elements that are close to each other are perceived to be related when compared with elements that are separate from each other.



The circles on left appear to be grouped in vertical columns and those on the right side to be grouped in horizontal rows. Above the elements are close to one another at an equal distance apart.

Use of colours and Proximity in advertising-

We can also see Coca-Cola use the law of proximity in the advertising copy above. It shows all the cola bottles are close to one and another appears to form groups. The group of bottles creates an illusion of a human smile.

Law of Continuity: – In simple law of continuity is how to our eyes search for continuous forms and follows to running another form without visual disconnected.


In the image above we can see the first segments of lines continuing and this allows us to see things smoothly without breaking the lines up into multiple parts.

Use of Colours and Continuity in advertising:

Above the picture’s logo shaded in red which compliments with the imposing image of the company symbol. The logo makes use of the law of continuity. We can follow C to N smoothly without breaking our visualization.

Law of similarity: In simple words, the law of similarity is when our brains perceive objects with common elements as belonging to each other and also when their shapes, colour, size, or any other visual element are similar.

Example of Similarity:

          Above the image’s items are similar tend to be grouped together. Its visual is similar to each column and row. Squares and circles are belonging to each other.

Uses Colours and Similarity in advertising:

The photo above depicts the Sun Microsystems logo. The SUN logo only used ‘U’ and an upside-down ‘U’ arranged in a loop. When combined together, the word ‘SUN’ is visible on all four sides. 

Law of Figure/Ground: When we looking at a visual scene, everyone tends to look for ways to differentiate between the figure and ground. In this visual, our minds find two images from the background.

There are three types of figure/ground relationships.

  • Stable figure-ground relationship, where a figure can be clearly distinguished from the ground
  • Ambiguous figure-ground relationship, where there is no part of the image stands out as either the figure on the ground.
  • Reversible figure-ground relationship, where both the figure and the ground have the same weight image. If we flip the figure and the ground we can also the same things.

Example of the law of figure-ground:

In the image above, the image showed stable and “reversible’’ two figure and ground relationship. One figure in the black background. We can see two faces in the black background and also one object we can see in the white background.

Use of Colours in the law of figure in advertising:

Above is the image of a Coca-Cola advertising copy. In the image, coca-cola used its brand colour which is red and white. Coca-cola also used the law of figure in that image. Our minds perceive the figure of Coca-cola bottle in red background and one fork and knife in white background.

It is an effective advertisement from Coca-cola.

Conclusion: Gestalt’s principles have helped many marketers and advertising professionals. Their creative content is so effective all over the world because of their content or visual telling of a story.

Every marketer uses gestalt principles for their advertisement and wants to see how their audience’s brains perceive information and understand.

Marketers know the audience recall what they see, more than what they hear or read. In the domain of advertising, marketers encourage and attract their audience for their product or Brand.

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