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The Dos and Don'ts of Creating an Attention-Grabbing Yearbook One Sheet

Creating a marketing one sheet can help promote your yearbook to possible businesses, parents, students, and community members. A one sheet is exactly what it sounds like – one page of promotional, marketing material that outlines your yearbook. It is intended to grab people’s attention and get them interested, while providing some basic information and giving them a call to action.

For the purposes of the yearbook, it may be best to create a few different one sheets – one you will market to students, one you will send to parents, and another you will hand out to businesses or post throughout the community. It’s also a good idea to make a PDF version that you can post to the school or yearbook website, so people are able to view online.

But, before you start creating a shiny new one sheet, check out this list of Do’s and Don’ts:

DO…

Make it stylish: It is okay to have fun with your one sheet with unique fonts and bold colors; however, it should look polished and professional. Nothing is worse than trying to decipher a marketing piece with unreadable, funky fonts, or bright yellow colors on a white background. So if you’re going to graphically design the one sheet yourself, take a little time to understand design basics. It may be best to seek the help of whoever is in charge of the yearbook layout; chances are they already have an eye for clean design.

Bad graphic design is a buzz kill, so learn the basics for your one sheet.
Image source: Flickr user Craig Keeling

Create an attention-grabbing headline: You can spend hours conveying the perfect content, but the cold hard truth is that people may never read it. You need grab their interest through the title alone. If your title is attention-grabbing enough, it may get them interested in reading the rest of the content. Try to use descriptive sentences with punctuation. For example: “Tired of Living Life By the Textbook? Change it Up – Buy a Yearbook!” Ok, that one was pretty lame… but you get the idea. Long title sentences aren’t a bad thing when you break them up with punctuation, adding interest and pulling readers into the text.

Adding punctuation and sub-headers helps to break up the one sheet’s title and capture people’s attention.
Image source: Flickr user ryan14072

Keep content short and sweet: As an exercise, write up your wish list of all the things you’d like to share with people about what makes the yearbook so great, why it is important to the school, and why they should purchase or contribute to one.

Ok, now delete half of it. A one sheet should be concise and hit the main points in a short, yet captivating way. Keep it to brief sentences or a bulleted list only. If you find yourself going on for paragraphs… delete and start again.

Add personality: You want something that sets your sheet apart from the other pieces of promo people receive day-to-day. So let your voice, and the voice of your committee, show through in the one sheet. You can be witty, whimsical, and wisecracking… or take a more snarky, straightforward approach. Whatever your attitude is, bring it to the one sheet writing.

Insert a call to action: A person could stand there for five minutes straight and read everything your one sheet has to say… yet still walk away not knowing what they’re supposed to do next. If you want them to do something – tell them! In this case, you will want students and parents to purchase the yearbook, and businesses to buy ads. So spell it out for them – and don’t forget to provide contact or purchase information so they know where to go next.

DON’T…

Say it all: You want to leave people wanting more, and hopefully coming to you for questions. That way you will be able to talk up the yearbook, peaking their interest in purchasing, and encouraging them to tell others. So keep some things open-ended. If you are describing what the yearbook sections are like, don’t go into immense detail. Provide some infectious keywords, and leave it open for interpretation.

Use clipart: That style was old before it was new. You have hundreds of creative souls in the school, just waiting for an opportunity to shine. So if you’re not an artiste, recruit someone who is. Creating original art for the one sheet will be both appealing and unique, and will impress readers.

Use up all the space on page: There is nothing wrong with a little white space. Without space for the sheet to breathe, it can feel overwhelming to the reader, and they may walk away without caring what the sheet is about.

Put all your eggs in one basket: Don’t let the marketing stop with a one sheet. While it will serve as a distinctive, eye-catching piece, it shouldn’t be the only marketing trick up your sleeve.

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