Print and Design Communication Components
Print and design communication elements address the visual needs of the target audience and also act as a long-term communication strategy. In this project, various forms of print and design communication types will be used including flyers and posters. The design of such communication elements will be based on proven techniques and procedures, which are highlighted herein. The print and design media will play an essential role in attracting audiences to the Rock & Roast Fun Factory offline show at the Lyceum Theatre in Shanghai in August 2020. Two main categories of print media have been designed with the aim of communicating to existing fans of the presenters as well as to potential fans of the show regarding their expectations and the deliverables of the show.
The primary consideration in designing the posters and flyers has been the objective to be achieved with them. Ladd describes the objective as the primary purpose of the developed communication media (1), which influences the content of the media and the probable reach that can be achieved through it. The main objective of the different forms of print media has been to grab the readers’ attention and direct them to the benefits of the advertised show in a bid to popularize the upcoming Fun Factory show. To achieve this objective, the different types of print and design media have been aimed at addressing the different target customer groups. Posters will be used where long term marketing communication is needed, such as in the cities away from Shanghai where it would be easy for potential customers to forget the event; they will also be useful towards attracting the audience on the move such as those using public transport systems; and to attract the attention of the general public, some of whom may be fans of comedy shows. The flyers on the other hand, will be used to serve as mailed or physically issued handouts, for short-term advertising when issued just before the event, as reinforcement to the poster advertising, and as the final advertising strategy just before the event. All these applications have been discussed and found tenable by Ladd (1). For this marketing plan, it is expected that a combination of posters and flyers will be able to yield greater positive outcomes.
The second consideration in the design was the benefit associated with the advertised event. Before designing an effective poster or flyer, there has to be clarity not only on the objective of the print and design media but also on the overall value that the advertised event can provide to customers (Nysveen and Einar 385). The value of the event is best described through the different pitching messages, and should be simple and clear so that any potential customers viewing the poster and/or flyer will automatically see what the event is offering. For this project, the event being marketed is the offline show for Rock & Roast Fun Factory. The presenters at the event are individuals who have already made names in the stand-up comedy industry and therefore have a huge fan base. The probability of audiences being attracted by their presence is high. Additionally, research has also shown that laughter induces the release of serotonin in the body, which enhance the overall feeling of well-being and the quality of life (Stroud 76). Since the potential audience needs to see value beyond merely laughing and having fun, a message that combines the research findings and the past audience experiences with Rock & Roast can help foster the development of the value proposition for the event.
The secondary benefits that the audience will receive from the function are also shared through posters and flyers. By attending the comedy show, the audience will benefit from a variety of other outcomes including enhanced performance in developing as well as sustaining attention. Humor also helps in enhancing participation in other aspects of life such as comprehension ability and in increasing motivation (Savage et al. 341). These outcomes are categorized as secondary benefits because they do not occur immediately and the effects of the comedy in such aspects may not be felt instantaneously. By creating awareness of these benefits in addition to the primary benefits, it is expected that more people will be attracted to the Rock & Roast Fun Factory comedy show. This information is included in the print and design media for both long-term and short-term (last minute) advertisements through posters and flyers respectively.
Another consideration that has been made in the design and print media development is the target audience. The target audience is defined by the population that is to be attracted by the use of this specific marketing communication element. The Fun Factory offline performance targets a wide range of audience characteristics. The target audience comprises of the young, the elites, the older generations, the educated, and the individuals with high income levels who have sufficient surplus funds to spend on entertainment. The first group of potential audience includes people who are over 80 years old. They are more likely to have a lot of free time and thus probably more willing to attend such comedy shows. The next category of the target audience comprises of students and the younger generations. Since August is the summer holiday, they are also more likely to seek opportunities for self-relaxation. Additionally, the marketing also targets a population with a wide cultural distribution. Shanghai is an international city with a wide range of cultural groups including immigrants from other nations and tourists. The print and design media communications have been designed to reflect an inter-generational and inter-cultural outlook, which will attract a wider audience.
The targeted audience is expected to react by registering for and eventually attending the show. The ultimate objective of any form of marketing communication is to earn the interest of potential customers. By using the right combination of features, it is expected that the audience will not only be intrigued by the messaging in the media but will also find it necessary to attend the show. This will translate to high profitability for the artists and the organizers of the show, and increase the probability of repeating such a show in the future. The detailed communication therefore clearly gives an impression of reliability and effectiveness in planning.
Both posters and flyers have different components that are used to ensure marketing success through the media. Some of these features include the headline, which should be clear and attractive as it is the most important element of the print media (Ladd 3). The body copy is the next crucial component and presents the objective of the media, the arguments for attending the event such as the short and long-term benefits of comedy and laughter, and persuasive statements that drive the reader to take action in line with the advertisement. The other component is the signature. The signature includes the business name, logo, where to get the tickets and the contact information for the event (Ilic and Rowe 6). Design considerations therefore have been made to ensure that all the components of the print and design media for Rock & Roast Fun factory offline show effectively reflect the intended message and that the designs are complete.
Various practical considerations have been made to come up with the perfect designs that can achieve the stated goals. Following the design principles recommended by Ladd (3) has helped in developing highly effective posters and flyers for the Fun Factory event. The considerations include following the KISS principle, which means using a sweet and simple headline combined with captivating information that can be read in the least time possible; varying the sizes of posters depending on the locations in which they are to be posted such as by having smaller posters on public transport systems and larger posters in static positions; using visible font by ensuring readability 4-5 steps from the poster for the smaller sized posters and using a maximum of three different font styles (Brownlie 1248). Other considerations that have been made for the print media design include using color to attract the attention of the audience; color yellow has been considered for the Fun factory offline show advertisement and has been combined with blue in the posters. The choice of font color and the color of pictures has been made in alignment with the background color for the poster. The use of graphics and white space over words has also been considered. Too many words in a print design marketing media piece can give the impression of overcrowding, hence limiting readability (Ladd 3). The white space helps to prevent cluttering by both words and graphics, hence improving the overall impacts of the media design (Ladd 4). These considerations will help develop print media pieces that not only reflect the intended marketing message but also attract the audience, hence enhancing the probability of positive response from the audience.
Coming up with the designed print and design media as part of the Rock & Roast Fun Factory event marketing communication tools required understanding the context of the project and the roles played by other marketing media. The objective of such practice was to avoid duplicating marketing communication to the same target markets while leaving other target markets with deficiencies. The effectiveness of the print and design media will be evaluated based on the extent of customer response following their placement. Customer information will be collected during registration, including the locations in which they saw the posters. That would be sufficient in planning the placement of additional posters. The development of the print and design resources should take approximately 2 weeks, and the posters will be posted at least one month before the event. Flyers on the other hand will be distributed much closer to the event. To ensure success, various measures have been considered including replacing worn out posters, asking the potential participants who reach out because of the posters what they would want to have featured during the event. The mentioned features may be included in the flyers and the posters produced later into the marketing activities.
A short video plan has also been developed for the Rock & Roast offline show. The video is expected to give information about the event in a more enticing way than the posters and to be used through the social media channels to effectively communicate the event objectives. In the recent years, the use of short videos for advertising has increased significantly as nearly 63% of businesses prefer videos to other forms of marketing (Boman and Raijonkari 5). Videos combine two essential elements in delivering marketing communication namely, sound and motion; hence their outcomes are better than those of other marketing communication channels (Boman and Raijonkari 16). The decision to use short video marketing communication for Rock & Roast Fun Factory offline show is therefore based on the potential for greater impact on the audience.
The first consideration when developing the short video was the identification of the overall project goals. For this particular project, the objective of short video marketing was to initiate social engagement with potential audience towards developing effective approaches for entertaining them. Through the short video, it will be possible for the viewers to develop expectations for the show will be delivering and to give recommendations on how to improve it. The recommendations of those who view the video will be taken into consideration when planning the show. According to a study by Voorveld et al., it was shown that identifying the overall business goals is mandatory for effective content marketing and this includes the specific end goals such as increase in sales or enhanced social engagement (40). The specific business goals for Rock & Roast Fun Factory with regards to the offline show is to attract potential audience engagement through the video, and subsequently use the video and other marketing platforms as the channels for audience registration.
The target audience for the short video marketing communication mostly includes younger individuals such as students and individuals in their middle age. For this audience, the short video mostly targets communication through content rather than by focusing on interruptive advertisement such as reading materials. Since the use of social media is quite popular among this group, the short video will be distributed through social media platforms. Internet usage among the young and middle aged populations has been on the rise recently, with nearly 88% of youths between 18 and 24 years of age and 78% of adults aged between 30 and 49 years active on social media as at 2018 (Smith and Anderson par. 5). With these percentages, it is expected that the short video used will be able to reach a majority of the targeted audience, especially among high school students, the elite and the more educated members of the society. These groups also exhibit high levels of impatience and may not have the time to engage with static communication channels such as the posters and flyers. With short and clear videos therefore, it will be easy to attract their attention and to engage them.
Content planning and creation of the short video was based on certain practical considerations, which make videos worthwhile as a marketing tool. The content plan requires an understanding of customer needs. In this context, the benefits of the show have been highlighted in the video including the effects of comedy on health and happiness. These benefits are also the needs of the audience, and will be the attracting factor for the show. Developing the content mix is also essential as part of the content planning and creation process. The content mix describes particular attributes that constitute the video including the pictures and the storyline/narration. The narration for the short video has been developed based on the intended marketing message for Rock & Roast Fun Factory. The narration has to be persuasive, relevant and based on research. Because of the sensitivity of the video narration and its contribution to the effectiveness of the video as a marketing tool, the choice of the narrator was considered an important factor as the voice also influences the impact that videos have on the audience (Caldicott and Tobias 58). Another practical consideration when developing the content was the time. Advertisements can be boring and effective impact can only be achieved by ensuring that the video content is sufficiently short to sustain the attention span of the audience. The video to be used for the Fun Factory show advertisement is only 60 s long, which is adequate for the intended purpose.
The effectiveness of the short video will be measured based on its impacts on the social media community and networks. Since the video is intended for distribution via social media, the simplest measure of reach will be the number of views on the video. The feedback on the video including the requests for registration will be considered to indicate the impacts of the video. Furthermore, various members of Fun Factory’s fan group will also be requested to share the video on their timelines and to give feedback on the video and the advertised event. Participation and content sharing will reinforce the intended community influence towards registration among potential audiences, which will lead to the expected attendance of Fun Factory offline show.
In addition to the 60 s video, there are also various advertisement clips that have been included as part of the media plan. Each of the clips serve the purpose of emphasizing the communication presented in the longer clip and has been developed based on the same practical considerations that have been described for the 60 s video. During the creation of the videos, the production budget was not a constraining factor as the videos were developed using easily available resources such as a group member’s phone video recorder. The videographer was also part of the team. Once the video and the clips were completed, their distribution was handled through collaboration with the member managing the group’s social media marketing. Through the collaboration, the main intention was to develop strategies for sharing content in ways that would communicate unity of purpose and to ensure the content shared complemented each other rather than substituting other content. Comments and likes will help to monitor progress after initial video distribution.
Plans have been made for video distribution to begin at least one and half months prior to the event. The distribution of the teaser clips will begin earlier, about two months before the start of the show. The marketing video will be distributed continuously including during the shows as an interlude to performances by the different participants. To maintain media interest even through the presentations, good background music will be played to accompany the video. It is expected that the video will be able to attract many people not only to social media engagement but also to actual event attendance.
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