04 June 2014

Two Winning Library Marketing Design Entries at the 2014 Best of Show Awards at PR Xchange

Cover of winning THINK... newsletter / program guide / calendar of events.

Congratulations !

In May I was notified that I received two 2014 National PR Xchange Best of Show Awards from the Library Leadership Administration and Management Association's Public Relations and Marketing Section of the American Library Association. The winning entries were for a brochure titled "Things With Wings" and for the electronic version of our library newsletter, THINK... which is delivered as both print and online products. 

The official categories for these two winning entries are identified as:
Bibliographies / Booklists / Materials Promoting Collections - print category: 
Things With Wings Booklist Brochure,” $6 - $20 million budget category
and 
Calendars of Events / Newsletters - electronic category:
THINK... Spring 2013  Newsletter & Program Guide,” $6 - $20 million budget category 

Considering there were 345 entries submitted by both public and private libraries nationwide and that contest committee chairs typically have entries judged by a panel of design, marketing communications and public relations professionals rather than librarians, it is an honor to be recognized for the design work I do on behalf of the library district I serve in Alachua County, Florida. A link to the winning issue (and other issues) of THINK... newsletter can be found here: http://www.aclib.us/think-archive .

Winning entries will be on display June 29, from 11:00am-1:30pm at the PR Xchange event which is part of the American Library Association annual conference, this year being held in Las Vegas. And, although I won't be personally in attendance, award certificates will be presented during the Best of Show Ceremony that same Sunday. The event provides an opportunity for visitors to browse through, be inspired by, and take home publicity materials offered by libraries around the country.

The annual Best of Show at PR Xchange recognizes the very best public relations materials produced by libraries in the past year. Entries will be evaluated based on content, originality, and design by a team of experts in public relations, graphic design, communications, and marketing who select the winner(s) in each category. The Best of Show Awards are sponsored by the Library Leadership Administration and Management Association's Public Relations and Marketing Section and are overseen by the PR XChange Committee. More information about the PR Xchange can be read here: http://www.ala.org/llama/awards/prxchange_bestofshow

In 2013, winning entries were posted on Flickr by the committee at https://www.flickr.com/photos/97060948@N06/sets/ (of which I had one winning entry that year also). So with that in mind, I anticipate the same might take place for these 2014 Best of Show winners as well.

Brochure exterior cover and interior panel views (placed on tan background for better viewing of dimensions).


25 May 2014

Marketing for a New Library Grand Opening Event


Roadside sign announces opening of new library after opening day.
Invitation (folded) was printed on card stock, two invites per 8.5x11 inch page.
Event program (lower right) was also printed in the same manner, but not folded.

Grand opening public service 
announcement ad.
In 2011 the Alachua County Library District received permission from the city of Gainesville, Florida to build a new branch library. After that agreement and until they could build a permanent building, a mobile trailer was used as a functioning library. Finally, in 2013, work on the permanent structure began and leading up to its opening, the library wanted to get word out that a grand opening celebration would take place.

I looked back at previously designed marketing collaterals for the mobile unit's grand opening as a basis for continuing the theme of "building the future." That series of collaterals made use of a blue print background, a rainbow, and a few architectural tools such as a t-square. An announcement for ground breaking on the new permanent location site used a shovel silhouette along with the rainbow as part of the handle. You can see samples of those materials in my earlier blog posts here http://librarygraphicdesign.blogspot.com/2011/12/cone-park-library-branch-grand-opening.html and here http://librarygraphicdesign.blogspot.com/2013/04/library-groundbreaking-ceremony.html .


Post grand opening public service
 announcement ad.
Now that the permanent building had architectural renderings, I decided to use the architect's elevation drawing as line art for the basis of the new permanent building's grand opening design collaterals. I combined the elevation drawing with a sepia-toned wood grain image to add colour to it and to become the central art element on all collaterals. For purposes of continuity from piece-to-piece of the new collaterals, I made use of the same wood grain texture as a border treatment and within outlined text of the words "Grand Opening."


Website home page banner ad.
The first marketing piece to be distributed was an invitation, printed two up on a full page, then trimmed and folded down to be a quarter-paged sized card that could be opened. The 300 physical copies would be conventionally mailed out to recipients. A second invitation version saved as a .jpg would be embedded as an image into emails invitations sent out to additional recipients.


8.5 x 11 inch sign to post
in existing branch before
transfer of materials into
 the new library branch.
Two television broadcast public service announcement ads were created. One for announcing the grand opening event, and a second one for long term use after the grand opening. A 23x34 inch poster was also created for use in a free-standing frame to be displayed in the Headquarters Library lobby.

Closer to the grand opening day, a website banner ad and a secondary blog icon image would also appear on the library website to announce the grand opening and link to a blog post for details.

Because the mobile library unit would still be in operation during construction of the new permanent building, a time would come when materials from the mobile unit would need to move to the permanent site. A sign was created to provide advance notice for that disruption of service on the days that transfer of materials would happen. 


Library lobby poster.
Roadside yard signs were also created to be used along the stretch of road that passed in front of the new library location. One designed set appeared to announce the grand opening event, a second designed set appeared the day of the grand opening, and a final set appeared after the grand opening day to announce that the permanent library building was now open for business. The 24x29 inch signs were printed on large format paper and laminated for protection from inclement weather.

For the day of the grand opening, an event program was created, printed front and back on card stock, two programs to an 8.5x11 inch page. A diagram of the building's floorplan was also created to help visitors navigate the new space. And lastly, a pair of certificates were designed to present to the Library Foundation and Friends of the Library organizations for their generous support in helping to make the new library possible look and function to the highest of expectations.
Email invitation image.



Photos of the grand opening event can be viewed here:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/acld/sets/72157638731665456/







Event poster showed floorplan 
sections of new library.
Items created for publicizing the new library: 

300 copies: Grand Opening Event Invitation

1 copy: Grand Opening Event Email Invitation

1 copy: Grand Opening PSA #1

1 copy: New Library Open PSA #2

1 copy: Grand Opening Event Website Banner

Donor certificate.
1 copy: New Library Open Blog Icon


4 copies: Library Closed (during collection shift) 8x11 inch Signs

1 copy: 20x30 inch Grand Opening Announcement Lobby Poster

3 versions / 6 prints each: 24x19 inch Yard Signs for Pre-Grand Opening, Day-Of Grand Opening; and Now Open Post Grand Opening
Donor certificate.

100 copies: Grand Opening Event Program
Floorplan



1 copy: Grand Opening Event Colour Coded 
24x19 inch Poster

1 copy: Cake Decoration Image



1 copy: Grand Opening Event 11x8.5 inch Appreciation Certificate for Friends of the LIbrary donor

1 copy: Grand Opening Event 11x8.5 inch Appreciation Certificate for Foundation donor

Event program front and back.

08 May 2014

Design Collaterals for 2014 Library Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon

To strengthen recognition of any single event, its marketing collaterals
should be created to maintain a cohesive look from one piece to another.

Top row: starting images.
Bottom: modified images.
For the 2014 Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon, the library chose John Cech, who—among a variety of notable accolades—was Director of the University of Florida’s Center for Children’s Literature and Culture. He planned to speak about local Florida “treasures” that literary work had written about.

In conversations with my internal client, we agreed on exploring a visual solution that imparted the idea of a long-held keepsake from childhood that over the course of time might have become a little worn but nevertheless remained a personal treasure for the memories it evoked. 

Since the event was for a library, it was only natural to settle on a book concept—if for no other reason than to help present the essential invitation and program information. A book or personal journal could be the quintessential keepsake. 
Two sides of printed
program cover.

Next was to create something that looked like an “old book.” I already had a selection of domain free images of textures I could tap into from previous projects, and easily selected a brown leather grained material to be the cover of the book. A second book cover image had a wonderfully aged texture and decorative flower motif that would serve well as an accent to the primary cover material image. As it turns out, I also use the same image used in black/white as a pattern inside large “brackets” in the quarterly library newsletter, THINK...., so there is already a subliminal connection to the library for those who really look hard. 

Both original images needed to be modified for use in the luncheon event, however. I brightened both up and also changed the dark brown leather to be purple. The purple/gold combination looked more festive—perhaps a little more regal or “award ceremony-ish”—it was certainly a more youthful than the darker and duller original images. My client remarked that the purple/gold comination reminded her of the book The Little Prince; I was leaning toward Harold and the Purple Crayon myself. Neither was spot on, but hey, if the colour choices emparted any specific childhood book then I was already on target.
250 single-sided printed invitations on
 110lb stock before folding into card.

I planned to use the purple leather as the exterior cover of the book, then use the gold patterned image as an interior cover end paper surface. Once I placed text on the cover, however, I decided I wanted the cover to be more immediately recognizable as a book, so I included the gold accent image along the spine. I also used the accent pattern inside of a gold star that rested atop the display text, providing readers with an eye-catching place to start reading from.

I also wanted a playful, hand-generated looking display font with a thick line weight so it could still look bold even if used at a small point size. For this, I chose a font named “One Starry Night.” For the bulk of remaining text, I kept with the library’s corporate standards of Arial and Adobe Garamond.
The completed print invitation.

The first item of business was to create a print invitation in order to get it mailed out to recipients with enough advance notice. The library had typically used front/back printed quarter page card stock inserted into invitation envelopes for mailing. But because this theme involved a book design, I wanted this year’s invitation to be a “mini book” of sorts, with a cover and at least one internal page spread to open to. Having that would mean there would be four individual pages to provide information on in addition to the external and internal cover surfaces (not that I would advocate filling every open surface with text). It worked out well to have the event name on the cover; an invitation message on the first inside page; speaker credentials information on the left interior spread; event theme and essential date/time/location information on the right inside spread; and RSVP information requirements on the back inside page. The back cover and inside cover end pages could remain decorative and uncluttered. 
The e-vite version of the event invitation.

A separate RSVP card was created to be tucked into the invitation, but was later cancelled in favour of having attending guests either phone or email in their RSVPs. I was hopeful that the interior 24lb text pages could be bound to the exterior 110lb card stock cover by using a thin gold stretchy band, but due to a limited budget we used a thin, tan rubber band which--although cheap--didn't look terribly bad.
Checking program trim and alignment.

With the invitation setting the tone for the visuals, an e-invitation image was created to mimic the print invitation. This image would accompany electronically delivered invitations to invited guests. It would be followed up a few weeks later with a save-the-date email that included an instantly recognizable theme design image as an reminder.

Taking its cue from the invitation design, the event program would follow suit. It would utilize the same invitation book style and be more substancial in content with 12 interior pages: an opening dedication page; speaker bio; event schedule; six pages of branch volunteer highlights; a spread highlighting the speaker’s key points with a map to refer to their location; and a list of contributors to thank. Two slits into the back cover would hold in place a discount entrance ticket to one of the locations from the speaker’s list.
Above, below:
program interior pages.

The interior pages looked too stark and cheap against the detailed texture of the inside cover end pages, so I wanted to find something that had a little texture to it but not so much that it competed with the inside cover textures. I used an image of a handmade paper that had thin fibers and some golden accent leaves in it. After toning the original image back to 30% brightness, it provided a nice compliment to the cover textures. For continuity from page-to-page, I also made use of the gold patterned star as an accent above disaply text ascenders, as text bullets, and site locations on the map. Like my hope for the invitation, I hoped the program would make use of a nice, decorative gold stretch band. But finding materials within budget was a challenge. In the end, although a single staple held interior pages to each exterior cover, a length of gold yarn was used to hide the staple. It wasn't anyone's first choice, but it worked for those concerned with budget issues and the appearance of appearing too extravagant with public funding; a reasonable concern, of course.

While program language was being developed by others, I worked on designs for a raffle winner star and a discount ticket to one of the speaker’s destinations of choice. The raffle winner star was quick and easy: I picked up the accent star icon from the invitation and program, added a border around it using the purple cover texture, added the words “You Win!” inside the star, then duplicated the design multiple times on a single 8.5x11 inch page and them out for cutting out with an X-acto blade.



The discount ticket would require a little more work. I wanted it to have a carnival or movie ticket shape and use the same purple/gold textures. I created an outline of the ticket shape in Adobe Illustrator, then did the same with the border design. I turned the border into an outline stroke that I could import the gold texture into, then saved it as an image to place on page over top of the purple background texture. The ticket required text on both the front and back, so I placed that language into the center of the ticket. 


Program coupon front / back.
Originally, I wanted to have the border treatment on both sides of the ticket, but the paper pick-up on the office copier I used varied too much from page-to-page for me to count on a reliable alignment of front-to-back images. To address this, I opted against using a border treatment on the back of the ticket and centered text in a box ghosting out of the gold accent paper image instead.

Twentyfour table assignment markers were next to complete. I used 8.5x11 inch 110lb card stock pages to duplicate a design three times per page so that I could fold the page into a vertical pylon. Enough unprinted excess left on one side of the page provided me with enough room to act as a tab I could double stick tape to the leading end on the opposite side. To coordinate it with the other designs, I used the program page image of the handmade paper for the primary background of the table marker, used the purple and gold book image patterns for accent, along with the gold star.



Three-sided table markers.
Collateral designs produced for this event included:

Print Invitation (250)
Print Invitation Interior Pages (250)
E-Invitation Image (1)
RSVP Invitation Insert Card (Created but cancelled)
E-Save The Date Image (1)
Raffle Winner Stars (23)
Event Program Gift Coupon (250)
Event Program Exterior Cover (250)
Event Program Interior Pages (6 pages x 250)
Event Table Reservation Markers (24)
Event Table Veggie Plate Markers (12)

Some production shots. Upper left: trimming invitations; Upper right: trimming
invitation interior page; Middle left: notes on printed coupon pages during
effort to align printed fronts and backs; Middle right: cutting out scallop portion
of coupons after printing both sides; Lower left: cutting and folding programs;
Lower right: trimming collated interior pages of program before stapling together.

05 May 2014

Integrated Marketing Designs for Kids, Teens, & Adult Library Summer Reading Programs 2014


The Summer Reading Program is the Collaborative Summer Library Program’s (www.cslpreads.org) annual effort to encourage people of all ages to read. They break the effort down into different age groups that have their own themed application. For example, this year’s Summer Reading for kids was: “Fizz, Boom, Read!” For teens, it was “Spark a Reaction.” And for adults, it was “Literary Elements.” 

To help publicize this, the organization provides a CD-ROM of custom-made art and a few pre-formatted marketing items for each age group, such as a bookmark, an 8.5x11 inch sign, and a PowerPoint background image. Space is left on each designed collateral item for local libraries to add their own language. Unfortunately, it might not be adequate space for each library’s needs. 

Our library happens to be one of those libraries that needs more space. We prefer to advertise and promote the Summer Reading program across multiple channels of publicity, such as for print and online applications. The wide variety of unique collaterals—30 at the time of this writing—each with their own dimensional requirements, means that few, if any will match what the providing organization offers. Because of this, I end up creating everything we need from scratch, incorporating artwork I select from what was provided—and supplemented with my own additional images if needed—to unsure a consistent style is used for each age set. 

Typically, our library youth department manager will coordinate the gathering and dissemination of planned events information to provide that content to the marketing department for creation of materials requested. Our adult services department will use on of its own staff to coordinate adult summer reading publicity separately. I’ll work with both these internal clients as well as our marketing / public relations director to round out the full compliment of marketing design collaterals requested throughout the summer.

Because there are so many separate pieces I've created to support the entire Summer Reading program, I won't discuss the process for each. Instead, I'll just provide some sample images with a brief description for each.

Three 100x100px library website blog icons depict the essential theme identities for children (left), teens (middle) and adults (right).









Three library website banners 
show an expanded view 
of the essential theme identities.








Three online advertisements 
list children and teen events 
for June, for July, and for 
June–August.







Bookmark fronts / backs 
for children and teens.















Two television broadcast PSAs.
Top one for children / teen 
combination, and bottom one
for adults.












The top portion of 
MS Publisher templates for
children and teen half-page
flyers (top), full page signs
(middle), and quarter-page
handbills (bottom).








Children's quarter-page 
handbills.










Top left: online publication banner advert.
Top right: magazine print advert.
Bottom: publication print advert.










Exterior (top) and interior (bottom) 
views of a 14x8.5 children's 
quad-fold brochure. Used to log books
read, as well as to act as a 
game board to guide readers
through the summer.

The game board was also printed 
as 55.5x36 inch large format posters
for each of the 12 district libraries to
use with youth readers as they
charted their reading progress 
during the summer.



A version of the game board
I presented as an alternative
to a single linear game, this
version allowed users to read
at-will, and check off the 
"molecules" represented as
they progressed. Surprisingly,
it confused some of the 
librarians, so we went with the 
more structured, linear design.

An 14x8.5 inch quad-fold brochure
for the adult reading program.
Images used within the theme
display lettering and background
were images I sourced for to 
supplement the provided 
iconography with. Book covers
provided by the librarian.







Single-colour image 
(white ink) would imprint
onto a purple tote bag 
for adult summer readers.








COMPLETE SUMMER READING PROJECTS DESIGNED (+ QUANTITY):

Kids 3.625x4.875 inch Giggle Magazine Print Advert (1)
Kids/Teens 3.625x4.875 inch Giggle Magazine Advert (1)
Kids/Teens North Florida School Days Print Advert (1)
Kids/Teens Black College Monthly Newspaper Print Advert (1)
Kids Bookmark (5000) Vendor Printed
Teens Bookmark (1000) Vendor Printed
Adult 45x45 inch Publicity Board Poster (1)
Kids 8.5x11 inch Template (1) 
Teens 8.5x11 inch Template (1) 
Kids Half Page Template (1) 
Teens Half Page Template (1) 
Kids Quarter Page Template (1) 
Teens Quarter Page Template (1) 
Kids/Teens Half Page Handbill (240)
Kids Fun4GatorKids 150x300 px Online Advert (1)
Kids Fun4GatorKids 8x11 inch Online Advert Jun-Aug (1)
Kids Fun4GatorKids 8x11 inch Online Advert June Only (1)
Kids Fun4GatorKids 8x11 inch Online Advert July Only (1)
Kids 3ft Vert. x Prop Width Large Format Game Posters (18)
Kids 14x8.5 inch Tri-fold Game Brochure (4000) Vendor Printed
Adults 14x8.5 inch Tri-fold Game Brochure (700) Vendor Printed
Kids/Teens Broadcast Television PSA (1)
Adult Broadcast Television PSA (1)
Kids Website Blog Icon (1)
Teens Website Blog Icon (1)
Adults Website Blog Icon (1)
Kids Website Banner (1)
Teens Website Banner (1)
Adults Website Banner (1)
Adult Mini Tote Logo (1)