The first day of sessions, I found myself in five sessions. Some were very informative while others were good for doodling and picking tomorrow’s sessions.
Advertising Lessons from Mr. Magoo: Cristi Freudenrich, Oral Roberts University
In our first session, Kira and I learned about approaching and solving problems differently. Cristi used a Mr. Magoo cartoon to demonstrate how we can mistake one thing for another based on similar characteristics. We learned that if we remain focused on achieving the goal, we ignore the barrier. If we focus on resolving the barrier, we ignore the goal. Instead, the best way to approach problems is with an integrated focus on resolving the challenges the barrier poses to the goal. I thought this was very interesting and something that could work well for us. When faced with a problem, we need to make sure we are not thinking too myopically. Cristi explained that we have to create value for the yearbook for seniors to buy it. She taught us this equation: value = price + quality/relevance. We learned we need to ask ourselves why is buying the yearbook important, what makes it a worthwhile investment? I found Cristi’s session interesting and helpful for the future. I think Cristi’s problem solving process is an approach that could and should be used with yearbook, as well as any other problem I could encounter.
Crossing Yearbook Boundaries: Randy Stano, University of Miami
There was a lot about this session that I did not find to be relevant or new to us. I think we already knew the majority of the information presented. The overall idea of the session was to cover things outside of the norm in the yearbook. Randy’s suggestions were helpful but were outnumbered by his stories about football games. I feel he could have shortened the session or included more information.
Design Tweaks and Fixes: Bryan Dugan, University of Oklahoma
Compared to the previous session (Crossing Yearbook Boundaries), the information and how it was presented in this session was ten times more helpful. Unfortunately, the session lasted eight minutes at most. Bryan gave us a checklist for when we’re designing: cherish white space, dominant anything, obey the gutter, serif/sans serif/novelty fonts and equal spacing. I found all of these things to be essential in creating effective and appealing designs. After Bryan shared his checklist with us, he used examples and audience interaction to reiterate them. First we looked at spreads from his own yearbook and called out what from the checklist was done wrong. Then, we took one layout and picked out the problems it had, going through the checklist, to recreate it in a more appealing way. I thought this was a great way to instill the information and give us practice, but I would have loved to hear more about what he does to create his yearbook. There was much more potential for an amazing session but Bryan did not take advantage of the other 42 minutes he had.
Non-traditional Advertising Revenue Streams: Stephanie Murawski, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
This session was a waste of time for me. The conference booklet says the session was for advertising-business-marketing. Based on this topic and the description, I thought it would be very beneficial to attend this session because it could help us advertise the book better and sell more parent ads. I spent the duration of this session looking through the booklet picking out my sessions for the next two days. Although the information offered was interesting, it was directed toward newspapers. Of course. I think Stephanie did a great job presenting and offered a lot of helpful information, just not for me. The topic of the session should be changed to newspaper advertising in the booklet.
From Green to Lean and Mean: Emily Summars, University of Oklahoma
This was by far my favorite session all day. I left this session with more inspiration and ideas than all the other sessions combined. Since I became Editor-In-Chief, I have been trying to think of different ideas for icebreakers and incentives so that the Summit Yearbook evolves from a staff into a family. I thought our iPod/fishbowl raffle would be a great way to get staff members to be more involved. Who wouldn’t want to win an iPod? Incentives are a great way to get members motivated, but Emily showed that the reward does not have to be something extravagant or expensive. As college students, we will never turn down a plate of brownies or a free dinner. Rather than waiting until the end of the year to reward staff members, I plan on reestablishing the staff member of the month award that Jenny and Jillian used before me. However, instead of simply getting a gift card to Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts, I’ll take ideas from staff members so that they choose what they work toward. Another interesting idea Emily shared was the fidgeting. She explained that at meetings, it helps creative juices flow if staff members are fidgeting with a stress ball or flipping through a magazine. This doesn’t necessarily distract staffers, but it helps them relax, making them more open and willingly to speak up and add to the meeting. Emily also suggested some fun bonding activities that would also help motivate staff such as movie nights, games, contests and craft nights. I’m really excited to start implementing a lot of these ideas and I hope the staff is ready for some fun bonding activities!