The One Set of Yearbook Flyers That Can Boost Your Sales By 50%

We all know it: yearbook flyers are one of the best ways to market your yearbook.

They’re cheap, they’re fast, they’re easy to make (in fact, really awesome yearbook companies will give you templates to use). And they’re really effective. That one sheet of paper can tell each member of your school community everything they need to know about the yearbook: when it goes on sale, how much it costs, how they can order it, when they need to order it by.

But, as much as they work, yearbook flyers do fall short in one key way; they don’t do a great job of convincing people why they should buy the yearbook.

See, the traditional yearbook flyer is designed to be an announcement. It’s not designed to be persuasive. If you really want to give your yearbook sales a boost, you need to change that.

The great thing is, it’s very easy to do.

In order to persuade people to buy your yearbook, you need to do three things:

  1. Answer their question of “What’s in it for me?”
  2. Only give them enough of the answer that they’re oozing with curiosity.
  3. Make buying the yearbook the only way to get the rest of the answer.

When you do all that, you have a yearbook flyer that looks like this:

Yearbook Order Deadline Flyer

(Want to make a flyer just like this? You can grab this template right here. Be sure to read on, though, because we walk you through how to handle the rest of the process.)

Maybe you’ve seen this type of flyer on Pinterest or heard about other schools using something like this. We certainly had. But what we hadn’t seen (or heard) was how well they worked.

So, we reached out to Angie Allen, the yearbook adviser at Elizabeth Lenz Elementary School in Nevada, to talk to her about this type of flyer. She’s used it for two years and, this year, this  approached to her flyers boosted her sales by 50%.

What we’re going to do in the rest of the post is to tell you why these flyers work and, with the help of Angie, share the steps you can take to create them yourself.

The Science Behind Why These Yearbook Flyers Work

Before we go any further, here’s Angie on why she created the flyers:

“I thought, if we told the students and their parents what pages they were on, it would feel more concrete than a ‘You’re probably in the yearbook.’ message… It works. We sold 227 yearbooks prior to the flyers going out and we ended up selling 370.”

Angie’s instinct was dead on. Interestingly, though, there’s a scientific reason behind it.

Think about all those headlines you see on Facebook and Twitter: “…You Won’t Believe What Happened Next” and “How I {insert amazing feat} In Just {insert ridiculously short time frame}” It’s nearly impossible not to click on those headlines, right?

If they almost feel like an itch that needs to be scratched, that’s because there’s a scientific reason for that: Those headlines are creating a curiosity gap (or, if you’re being scholarly, an information gap).

Here’s the curiosity gap, as illustrated by a nine-year-old on a playground:

The theory behind the curiosity gap is based in psychology and goes like this: when we’re confronted with a gap in our knowledge, we feel a primal urge to close that gap—and we’re willing to take any action to do so.

“Such information gaps produce the feeling of deprivation labeled curiosity,” wrote George Lowenstein, the psychologist who developed the theory in the early 1990s. “The curious individual is motivated to obtain the missing information to reduce or eliminate the feeling of deprivation.”

More recently, a study has shown that we’re most curious when we know a little about a subject, but not too much. In other words, something’s been done to raise our level of curiosity.

So, how does all this science relate to your yearbook flyers?

You can use your flyers to create that curiosity gap.

How to Make Yearbook Flyers That Create a Curiosity Gap

Angie’s flyers did just that.

They answered the “What’s in it for me?” question by telling the student how many times he or she was in the yearbook and where he or she appeared. The trick is the second part of the flyer (where the photos are in the book), because, at that point, you’ve given the person everything but the photo.

This is where the curiosity kicks in.

(Real world example for you: Have you ever had a friend say, “Oh, my gosh! You have to see this photo I have of you. It’s so funny!” Piques your interest, right? This is the equivalent of that.)

So, how did Angie do it?

We asked her about that, and she shared her tips.

  • Tag your photos– This is prep work, and it might sound like a lot of work, but it’s not too bad if you stay on top of it. The trick is finding someone who knows all the students at your school. (Angie was able to work with her school’s librarian to identify all the students she didn’t know.) Also, tagging photos makes life a lot easier in the end. You can automatically create index pages off that data and make sure you’re including every student a minimum number of times.
  • Create Lists- To start work on the actual flyers, Angie created a list of students who hadn’t purchased a book. She then used that list to check against her index and make sure she had candid photos of those students in the yearbook. (Angie also did the same for students who already purchased a yearbook.)
  • Take Extra Photos- By cross-checking a student’s name against the number of times he or she appeared in the book, Angie discovered that some students were underrepresented in the first draft. So, she went to school and specifically sought out pictures of those students to include in the yearbook.
  • Fill out & Distribute Flyers- After she added her extra photos to the yearbook, Angie sat down with her flyer template (which is really similar to this free one you can grab from us!) and filled out the information found on her index. Each flyer had a student’s name, the pages on which he or she appeared, and instructions on how to buy the yearbook.  Then, she distributed the flyers to each student who hadn’t bought a yearbook.

Angie said she’s found waiting to send the yearbook flyers until shortly before the order deadline is the best way to provoke someone to take action.

“We’ve had a hard time with sales at beginning of the year. People aren’t as interested then,” she said. “We’ve flooded them with flyers in the backpack and that sort of thing, but, at that time of the year, they can say, ‘Oh, I can wait.’”

By waiting until the end of the ordering window to distribute the flyers, Angie is able to create a curiosity gap and a sense of urgency. In other words, Angie is warning everyone: if you don’t act right away to find out what photos of you are in the yearbook, you might not have the chance to find out.

That’s a pretty tough warning to ignore.

Yearbook Order Deadline Flyer

More Marketing & Sales

Two students huddle together to create a yearbook marketing plan Marketing & Sales
Teaching Yearbook: Making a Marketing Plan
Read Article
Hands forming a heart with yearbook hacks written on them: send to back, marketing tips, printed proof, alignment Design
23 Yearbook Hacks for 2023
Read Article
Man with outstretched arms to give yearbook donation for Treering's matching promotion Marketing & Sales
Double Your Donations
Read Article
Yearbook Hero Arielle SHansky Yearbook Heroes
Yearbook Hero Arielle Shansky's a Homemade Memory Maker
Read Article