Working in tight collaboration with UCL’s team, we undertook a forensic analysis of every element of their magazine to address a set of key strategic objectives: to highlight academic excellent, to emphasise that UCL thinkers are free to address the big questions, and to underline the fact that UCL is radical by history and personality.
We also wanted to tap into alumni nostalgia, give readers a sense of belonging to a broad alumni network, and ensure that the magazine was a conversation, not a lecture. Most of all, we wanted to do all this while putting the reader first – we knew if readers weren’t engaged we may as well not bother with the messaging.
The first step was to take a long hard look at what we were producing. Design, content, headlines, pull quotes, structure of features and of the magazine itself: everything was scrutinised for effectiveness. We wanted to breathe some life into a publication that was well designed, but wasn’t making an emotional connection with its audience.