Sunday 8 April 2012

Magazine Fair

On March 30th, us first-year CreComm students hosted a Magazine Fair, or tradeshow, if you will. We’d been working on creating our very own magazines since January, and the fair was the last component to completing the 3-month long project. In order to produce these magazines we had to pitch our topic idea, write feature articles, do our own photography, design a variety of advertisements, come up with filler content, write creative and publicity proposals, perfect the layout, and everything in between. 

There was a ton of different magazine topics created this year. Topics included blogging, Jets fans, sushi, candy, hip-hop, technology for women, and so on.  Our group decided to create a magazine about sex, Undressed Winnipeg. Undressed Winnipeg is not Playboy, it’s not Cosmo; it’s about sexuality in Winnipeg and how different people choose to express it. We talked about BDSM in the community, male erotic dancers, and so much more. 
 *Would you like to read Undressed Winnipeg? Leave a comment with your email, and I'll send you a FREE PDF

I’ve always wanted to create a magazine, and every time I hold the finished product in my hands, I can’t believe I’ve actually had the opportunity to do so. I learned so many things with this project. I’ve learned a lot about the magazine world, but I also learned a lot about myself. I learned more about my work ethic as it relates to working in a group, and I learned the list of things I want to do with my life is getting longer by the minute. 

But we’ll talk more about that another day...for now...back to the magazine fair.

At our booth we gave away a ton of goodies. We had chocolate covered strawberries, chocolate cookies filled with cayenne pepper (an aphrodisiac), stickers, bottled water, lubricant samples, and hand massages....all fun stuff! Since the cover of our magazine incorporated different shades of green, we decided to dress up our booth to match that theme. And of course, we had to have two blowouts of our magazine cover, featuring the beautiful Kimiya Yussuf. 

But among our booth, was a bunch of other really amazing works of art. We were right next to Umami magazine and they had definitely gone all out with their Japanese theme. They were giving out free sushi all day, and of course I snuck in a piece or two. I tried BBQ’d eel for the first time....and it was delicious.

I made my way down to Kaendi (candy) magazine and they had some candy trivia going on. People who answered their questions correctly got to fill up a Kaendi-branded bag with all the candy they could fit. Definitely a crowd pleaser!

Chip was a magazine created for kids, and so of course the creators had cute little kids helping them out with their booth. They invited people to join them in Twister, hoola hoop contests, and other fun games. And their tie-dye shirts were pretty awesome! 
Swig magazine also had a really impressive booth. They weren’t allowed to serve real alcohol, but they made a good mix of virgin beverages. And instead of having a typical table set-up, their section was filled with lounge style couches, which was definitely in keeping with the theme of their magazine.

I was really excited to see the Black Tutu booth. Although it wasn’t a project requirement, they did a lot of promotion for their magazine, which really got everyone pumped about checking it out. I didn’t snag a picture of it, but they brought in a Harley-Davidson motorcycle, and people who visited their booth had a chance to take pictures on it. If I didn’t have to hurry back to my own booth, I definitely would’ve gotten my picture taken, too. 

Overall, all of the booth were really good, and you could tell a lot of hard work went into creating them 

Want some tradeshow tips?

1.       Design your booth and it’s functionality to be consistent with the brand of your product.
2.       People LOVE free food. But cookies and cupcakes tend to get over done, and people often get overwhelmed with all of the sugar. Take notes from Umami magazine, and try handing out sushi, or something equally delicious.
3.       Being in a standstill behind your booth makes it hard for you to engage with your audience, and makes it look like you’re not interested in your product. Come to the side or the front of the table, so people get the chance to learn more about your product, and why it would be of interest to them.
4.       Know your product! Believe it or not, people are going to want to know more about what you’re presenting to them. Be prepared to answer any and all questions about what you’re trying to sell, or advocate.
5.       Have fun! If you’re having fun, you’re audience will want to have fun with you.

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