It has been reported that “print is dead.”
Obviously, online advertising, adwords, social networking and other web-based marketing solutions have forced a reshuffling of many marketing budgets in the last decade. For most businesses, however, there remains a strong and legitimate need for some type of printed collateral. When personal, face-to-face interaction is involved in the sales cycle, there is really nothing that compares with the ease of use and power of a well-printed “take away.”
The Saint Paul Conservatory for Performing Artists (SPCPA), in Saint Paul, MN, decided that though they had invested in a new website and have regular email communication opportunities to reach their existing audience (their students and their parents) – one segment of their audience – their prospective students, parents and other visitors – deserved an actual printed piece to more accurately help tell their story. On one hand, the “Viewbook” we designed with them is an annual report of sorts, summarizing the various curricula and progresses the school has made recently. Truth be told, the viewbook has an inside pocket in which financial datasheets and other business documents can be inserted. The book is presented to sponsors, Board members and other community cohorts to communicate the intense professional nature of their programming and rally community support.
On the other hand, the viewbook is a lush, dramatic, full-bleed canvas on which the incredible school and its student performers are presented in a very flattering spotlight – free of the other distractions found in online solutions. A prospective student and their parents can take a tour of the school and refer to the viewbook en route. Tour guides can quickly reference specific text in the document. The spirit of the students and the school is presented in full-page images that can’t quite be matched on a web page. The book goes home with the student and remains in view on the kitchen or coffee table – generating repeat “impressions” that web solutions can’t quite match.
(Full disclosure: we also created a video for SPCPA that allows another deeper review of the school from the students’ perspective.)