First, have a shot of Icelandic cod liver oil with breakfast. Delicious, with a taste similar to a liquefied, low-salt anchovy. But, like many things and habits that are presumably good for you, this is not an experience I look forward to.
Second, write a guide to organizing, designing, managing, printing and distributing ad books for fund-raising. Delicious, and it helps strengthen the health of an organization. It’s good for me and you, but assembling ad books normally gives everyone agita.
So, as an expansion of our guide to “Program and Ad Books” page on our website, Capitol Copy Service, here are some observations and ideas that are good for you and the health of your organization:
Program books have the dual purposes of benefitting supporters and promoting your organization.
♦ Too often, ad book authors/compilers forget that it is about their company, organization or special event. Would you like to read and keep an entire booklet consisting only of ads and promos? Neither would I. So, include something about your firm: history, goals, photos from the past, and, don’t forget to explain where the ad dollars will be going.
♦ Some advertisers and sponsors really don’t care about the ad; they just give you a dollar commitment so you’ll go away. But, I like to think they really do care, and for this reason we cheerfully design a basic ad for them. Then, when you solicit their support the next time, you can show them how wonderful they are!
♦ It’s a great idea to offer sponsorship “bundles” with each level of ads, giving sponsors key ad placement, extra recognition on signage or maybe carving their name in a watermelon fruit basket at the banquet table.
♦ Always accept a paid ad, regardless of deadline. Sometimes printers (like us) can work miracles and squeeze in an ad. Or, do an insert. Or, design a small table sign for them. Or, make mention of the advertiser as part of the live program.
♦ Take a tip from public TV and radio: ask that everyone support the advertisers that purchased ad space. Connecting people as customers, vendors, advertisers and promoters is always a worthwhile goal!
Program Books Want and Need a Healthy Dose of Planning
♠ Nearly every adbook we’ve done in thirty years concludes with crunch time at deadline. I guess it’s unavoidable but planning does help. Start with the date and time you need the adbook and work backwards. (We can help with production schedules: Print@Capitol-Copy.com)
♠ Have an awesome rate sheet. Not only does it give the ad shopper options, it also shows how serious you are about pursuing support. Sample ads, layout templates and previous adbooks help you sell. (We’ll customize one just for you: Design@Capitol-Copy.com)
♠ Payment in advance or with an ad order is the best policy but not always realistic. Go with an ad placement deadline, ad copy deadline and a separate or concurrent payment deadline and aim to wrap up everything before the date of your event.
♠ Allow yourself some sit-down time to assemble the book. Who gets the center-spread? Where does the event program go? Should a menu be given a page? Will there be stunning photos of me on the outside back cover? Can I find text and logos for ads on the advertiser’s website? No need to sweat the details at this point; just get a feel for the elements of your booklet.
Multi-Source; Slice and Dice Your Booklet
♣ No reason to keep your ad book a secret. Plunge it right into social media, as a polished PDF or in bits and pieces.
♣ Recent trends show that some print adbooks are less of a focus, favoring a PowerPoint or video showcase of advertisers. (We’ll design one for you.)
I’ll read, follow and recommend that!
Follow-Through and Follow-Up
♥ You are a considerate person with a pleasing personality. So, I know you’ll send thank you’s to all your advertisers, supporters and participants! Tell them how well the event fared and how much you value their contribution. You’re welcome.
♥ Like Dickens said of Christmas: the spirit is not what comes for one day alone, but throughout the rolling year.. And so it is for your sponsored program book; plan for the next one as you conclude the present one.
Now, I’m off to have a second shot of Cod Liver Oil. It’s good for me.
Thanks for reading.