I had a presentation for the corporate affairs manager of a fairly large multinational company, whom wanted a fresh angle in redoing their corporate newsletter/magazine.
I started with re-affirming communications objectives and presenting the creative, editorial and design direction. On that, I casually slipped in this:
Let the readers shape the design.
After presenting a few layout directions I reached the section where I said,
This is the part where I am giving up design control and let your readers do their own design. We suggest the content direction, your readers do whatever they want. We will not design. They will.
Because it is their photos, their artwork and their design, I am very sure they will bring this magazine around to show fellow colleagues, friends, family. Hence your objective of building a community would be half-met.
For an instance, she was surprised, and with a smile, she said,
This is spot-on. This is what we want. So many agencies had submitted their proposals and they didn’t nail this.
Being the client they are (huge multinational bank), I happened to know that they only deal with big international agencies. To her comment I replied,
The difference is, I am not from an advertising agency. I do this for a living.
I think I have got the job by selling blank pages for their design.