Making the Case for Creative Services


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This presentation was a general session at the 2012 UCDA Design Summit. Summary: The communication paradigm continues to shift. Essentially we're all trying to figure out a way to get a bunch of great people with different skills on the same team doing exceptional work telling the story of our college or university. So how do you take separate organizations and merge them into one high-performance engine of creativity? What steps do you take to blend web and publications into a creative services team? We'll talk about an approach where you forget the past, ignore the present, and imagine the future. And, we'll walk through a case study of a prospective student mailing project that demonstrates how a medium-agnostic team can come together to accomplish incredible creative.

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  • Making the Case for Creative Services

    1. 1. Making the Case for Creative Services UCDA Design Summit 2012 Susan T. Evans | Senior Strategist | mStoner
    2. 2. What is it?An in-house creative team that blends capabilities across mediums
    3. 3. 1. What problem are you solving?2. Imagine a bright future.3. Watch what you wish for, you...4. Take it from someone who knows.5. Making it work: Results!
    4. 4. Tell me your troubles.
    5. 5. Same story,different campus.
    6. 6. Close your eyes and dream.
    7. 7. If you were startingfrom scratch...
    8. 8. Use emotion.William & Mary is a place of ideas, exceptionaleducation, and unlike any other university inAmerica. In my view, we are struggling toconsistently represent who we are and what we doto those who know us and to those who know ofus. A creative services operation could be anengine of creativity, a place where talented peoplewho love the College can use multiple forms ofcommunication to tell the William & Mary story.
    9. 9. Be direct.Currently, a number of committees are workinghard to coordinate communication opportunities.I think William & Mary could do better. Acreative services team could come to workeveryday thinking about ways to explain andpromote what happens on our campus. Acreative services team could produce anintegrated splash where individual creativeelements like photos and language and graphicsall come together to make a lasting impression.
    10. 10. So you got what you wanted.
    11. 11. Next up,organizationalidentity crisis.Who are you? Who? Who?
    12. 12. Who we are...•We offer the skills and expertise of an award-winning (in-house) creative agency.•We want to bring currently outsourced creative work in house.•We promote and explain academics.
    13. 13. I’ve been there.
    14. 14. Year 1: The year oflessons learned.
    15. 15. Some people just want services.You’re offering creative services.
    16. 16. Quickly orquality? Both!Some of our best work didn’ttake a lot of time or planning.
    17. 17. Print is different. “In the print world, the wordpublish really means something.”
    18. 18. Set people up todisappoint you and they will. Ping them but don’t start.
    19. 19. As soon as possible. Don’t work back from whenever.
    20. 20. Sometimes youhave to say no.People will thank you for it.
    21. 21. But don’t beafraid to say yes. It doesn’t always mean more work.
    22. 22. Making it work: Results!- Mobile website and mobile app- Campus-wide events calendar- 30-second TV spot- Social media aggregator and user group- Facebook splash page for fundraising- New view book and microsite (Ampersandbox)- Foursquare- W&M Experts web database- Simple web forms tool- 15 videos (with no dedicated video position)
    23. 23. CASE STUDYW&M + mStoner = Ampersandbox
    24. 24. “View book, viewbook, space ship.” An in-house creative team that blends capabilities across mediums
    25. 25. The set up.• 7+ year-old viewbook• only parents look at print (?)• award-winning website• popular student blogs• an early adopter of social media• budget for one mailing only• a standout (i.e., a spaceship)
    26. 26. Everything is connected toeverything else.
    27. 27. Warning.Don’t let the 30-, 40-, or 50-somethings pick the concept.
    28. 28. But if theres a shared passion at William & Mary— and William & Mary is nothing if not a place ofpassions — it is a passion for books. Printed anddigital. Ancient and modern. We consume books.They are our sustenance and solace.
    29. 29. In the first six months: 33,500 page views 9,500+ unique visitors 1:55 average time on site Visits from 64 countries21% of traffic is Williamsburg
    30. 30. In the first six months: 33,500 page views 9,500+ unique visitors 1:55 average time on site Visits from 64 countries21% of traffic is Williamsburg
    31. 31. My daughter Holly (high school junior) and mywife went on a campus visit Monday andbrought back the new view book. It’s innovativeand well done—very impressive compared to thematerials we are seeing from other schools. John Fleming ’82 Vice President- Marketing firstSTREET
    32. 32.  Received the box of conjunctions yesterday. Mustsay I was happy my son had planned on applyingbefore they arrived and now Im even more pleased.I noticed he had left a few highlighted on the tablethis morning with notes  about why he felt William& Mary would be a good fit for him. Parent of a prospective student
    33. 33. Points of Success• Intentional web/print/social integration• Technology informed by “the box” and social• No QR codes• Saved $$ - internal team developed site• Box and microsite complement
    34. 34. Questions? #yourturn
    35. 35. Thanks. T. EvansSenior 757.565.1726mobile: 757.903.1120