2015 Finalist

City Beautiful

Winnipeg Free Press

Winniepg, Canada

Category Create New Profit Centers

Media associated with this campaign

Overview of this campaign

Our editorial department created an in-paper, three-part series about architecture’s role in shaping Winnipeg throughout the last century. Digging deep into several photo archives, they produced a fascinating story of promise and progress, told in part through incredible art. The addition of digital assets -- slideshows and videos -- added a level of engagement for readers that went far deeper than a mere print story. Readers’ reaction was immediate. They commented on how entertaining and enriching they found the project. History teachers in particular embraced City Beautiful, taking to twitter to encourage their counterparts and students to see the project on our website.

The reaction was so strong, we instantly thought of repurposing the content into book form. But in these times of stretched budges, we needed to do this with minimal financial risk. We explored sponsorship opportunities and very quickly developed a relationship with the Manitoba Association of Architects who happened to be celebrating their 100th anniversary. We created an exclusive partnership to achieve several things: publish this book; acknowledge the architects’ involvement; offer a discounted pre-sale opportunity to the associations’ members and member companies. We also controlled costs by marketing the book with in-paper and online advertising. With our partnership in place, we were able to rush a fabulous coffee table book into the Christmas 2014 market.

Please note: the most important part of this entry is its online component. Below is the link

Results for this campaign

We did an initial press run of 5,000 books and began online and in-print marketing while we started receiving orders from the Association of Architects under their discounted agreement. Our partnership with the architects covered our hard costs of printing and production, our only investment being staff time to turning the series into what we knew would be an even more remarkable book. In the first week of pre-sale, readers ordered several hundred books and the architects ordered a few hundred. What happened next was unexpected. A large local bookstore called to say they were getting dozens of requests a day for the book and they wanted to stock it. We quickly worked out a pricing arrangement with them and within days they had sold about 1,500 books. Then the national bookseller in our market called seeking books for their customers, and we were able to make a simple deal with them which benefitted us while allowing us to avoid engaging in their national logistics.

The book quickly became the number one best seller in our market. Between Dec. 3 and 17, we sold 4,000 books and knew we would run out before Christmas. We quickly arranged for a second printing which we received the week before Christmas. By January, we had sold more than 6,000 books. We also used the books as gifts to major advertising clients and a copy for each of our staff members. The goodwill was incredible from citizens, city officials and other government and business leaders. The Manitoba Association of Architects received far greater value than they envisioned from this partnership. Bottom line: we produced a net profit of about $120,000 to add to our fiscal 2014 finish and we are not done yet.

Please note: the most important part of this entry is its online component. Below is the link


To contact a company representative about this campaign, click here for the INMA Member Directory