Consider where the promotion will be opened, in what state
of mind the recipient will be, and what they will be pleasantly
surprised to receive.” Promotions that are purely self-serving
will never make that ever-so-valuable connection with a target
audience, ultimately leaving your efforts in the circular fi le,
unopened and never read.
Each promotional initiative is also an opportunity to explore
outside the limitations of client-driven work to showcase new
skills. For Fusionary Media, this meant really pushing the
envelope. The design team decided to invite clients and col-
leagues to a virtual New Year’s Eve party held in cyberspace.
By creating an animated adventure game, the fi rm was able to
highlight recent offerings in a fun, imaginative, and engaging
way. (See page 80.) “We always try to seek out new avenues in
order to keep things interesting for ourselves and our audi-
ence,” says creative director T.M. Camp. “We’ve found that
clients hang onto the game and play it throughout the year,
creating a far longer and more profound impact.”
Whether you are hosting a real or virtual event, fi rst plan
everything out by crafting a detailed creative brief supported
by a comprehensive timeline and budget. This will not only
ensure that you consider the initiative as a whole before you
begin designing but also that you stay on track and don’t break
the bank in the process. Every promotional endeavor is an
investment. Each initiative strengthens client relations, building
brand equity over the long term.
Almost any notable occasion or endeavor is worthy
of a promotional message when it comes to maintaining that
vital connection with clientele. The announcement of a new
website, the celebration of an anniversary, the addition of
new staff members, or the achievement of awards all open
the opportunity to engage in communications.
To make a memorable impact, it is important to start with
a strong overall concept. Allow the message to drive the
design, not vice versa. Keep your audience small and person-
alize promotions as much as possible. “Instead of spending
your budget on a mass mailing, identify your best targets
and surprise them in a real creative way,” suggests Orlando
Facioli of Orlando Facioli Design. “Use interesting textures
and unexpected materials for them to touch and discover.”
Tactile surfaces, three-dimensional formats, and tangible
bindery encourage interaction, while scented add-ons,
tasteful treats, and an element of sound enhance the overall
sensual experience. Being a bit more innovative from either a
presentation or production standpoint can pique interest.
Most important, make your promotion relevant and interest-
ing for the audience. “We look at each promotion from the
recipient’s perspective by asking ourselves ‘what do they nor-
mally see, in what environment, and how is it delivered?’”
says Justin Ahrens of Rule29. “Then we try to be unique by
taking a different approach, whether it is size, format, im-
age, vocabulary, or materials.” Pamela Zuccker of Principle
agrees, “Always design with the end experience in mind.
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