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Oviatt Spotlight: Marketing Award

Contributed by Lesley Zambrano

The Oviatt’s newest brochure was created with a few very specific goals in mind: to connect with current and potential patrons; to engage new friends; and to promote the transformative impact of Library resources, services, and programming. Director of Development for the Oviatt Library and one of the brochure project’s team leaders, Luann Rocha, says, “The brochure tells us why the Library is so vital. It demonstrates the Library’s impact on students and the community.” The brochure’s central message, or call to action, is concisely conveyed on the cover: “Connect. Engage. Transform.” The three-word tagline highlights the idea that the library is the heart of the campus; a welcoming hub where students are able to connect to the resources that will help them excel intellectually and succeed educationally.

The brochure’s creative team opted to use quotes throughout to help convey specific examples of impact and transformation. One such example is from Oviatt Library student employee Raul Buenfil, who says, “The people, resources, and services at the Library are helping pave my way to success.” Buenfil was awarded the Library’s International Guitar Research Archives (IGRA) Fellowship, an annual award funded by an endowment established by Elizabeth-ann Purcell in honor of her late husband, CSUN Professor Ronald C. Purcell. The brochure also contains personal and compelling quotes from community educators, librarians, and donors. By featuring testimonials from people who have actually connected with the Oviatt, the brochure tells a more personal story. “It connects with us on a deeper level. Its storytelling gives it life,” says Rocha. The brochure makes a strong impression, because it does not just list dry facts and statistics about the library’s successes and resources. More importantly, it offers real-life examples of the library’s undeniable impact on its patrons.

Cover of the Oviatt Library brochure.While the Library was responsible for the content, the University Marketing and Communications Department managed the brochure’s design. According to those involved in creating the brochure, the end product is special because it is able to express the Library’s mission and unique essence while incorporating design elements from CSUN’s new visibility campaign, which aims to strengthen CSUN’s image and elevate its identity. Among other elements, the visibility campaign employs: a “rise” theme; upward-pointing, graphic arrows; CSUN’s signature red; and impactful photography. Director of University Marketing Kevin Lizarraga rightly points out that a key characteristic of the brochure is the photography, which was shot by Lee Choo. Lead Designer Magaly Sanchez agrees, saying, “Keeping the rise connection to the visibility campaign in mind, Choo sometimes took photos from low angles to give the illusion of elevation within the images.”

In the end, the campaign’s theme was well aligned with the Library’s mission, and the resulting brochure conveys a clear and unified message. In fact, Lizarraga was so satisfied with the Library brochure project that he submitted it for consideration to the 2016 Communicator Awards where it was recognized with a Silver Award.

Very appropriately, the final pages of the brochure contain examples of all of its award-winning elements. A photograph taken by Choo of Library Dean Mark Stover is intersected by an upward-slanting, red graphic. In the photo, Stover looks up, outward, and hopeful. On the facing page in a quote he shares, “We at the Oviatt Library take seriously the CSU’s commitment to every student in the largest and most diverse university system in the world. Though often faced with challenging budgetary constraints, we continue to meet those challenges thanks to our most valuable resource – you. Because you choose to connect with us, we are able to engage a community and transform countless lives through education.”