The use of handouts when launching a site

Using a few traditional communication and advertising methods can be extremely effective when launching a new site or service.

I recently pre-launched a site for a medical research organisation to collaborate and organise their activities. The site introduces the users to many new concepts such as blogging, commenting, file sharing and most importantly a shift away from a reliance on email.

I thought it was important to introduce them to the site gradually and not overwhelm them with a massive feature list. So I decided to produce a series of tri-fold handouts (as above) to give out both in person and in the mail. As soon as I produced the first one, folded it and had it in my hand, I realised you just can’t beat something visual and tangible like this. That’s why magazines and books won’t die out anytime soon. I’m backing this up with some online material, but I just don’t think you can beat handouts. This is especially true when you are working with an audience new to online collaboration.

5 thoughts on “The use of handouts when launching a site

  1. Stuart Jeffrey

    Scott I couldnt agree more! while I love the web, I still love a magazine (…or leaflet). OK so its a bit old fashioned….but there is no getting away from the paper completely. People like to feel and touch!…and its easier on the eye.

    What software did you create the above site with? screenshots are hard to make out.

    Nice new blog UI by the way!

  2. slgavin

    Hi Stuart,
    Thanks, I really like the look of the new blog UI. The only problem I have is finding enough stuff to fill up all the white space under the second column.

    I used Drupal for the PVRI site. It’s not always the best system to work with but it’s very very flexible and with some heavy configuration you can achieve most things. It will get a new skin at some point, but right now the users are getting used to the functionality before we look at the UI again.

  3. Simon Goh

    Hi Scott, we are about to launch a new corporate Intranet site after a 1 year project work. You’ve made me think hard just how the fundamentals could be important as I am trying to deviate from it to produce launch ideas. I’d like to thank you for this mental support.

    You may be interested to look at some launch ideas I have, nothing fanciful, just an attempt to build information trust for the Intranet.

    http://si177on.blogspot.com/2008/01/launching-intranet-as-by-product.html

  4. slgavin

    Hi Simon – I’m glad you got something from the post. When we launched an ‘Enterprise 2.0’ week a year or so ago, we had grand visions of doing it all online and without printing a single thing. We soon realised that in corporations the online material only goes so far. We needed a way to reach everyone, not just the people already bought into the online concept. I’ll post more about our marketing efforts soon.

  5. Pingback: More ways to launch Enterprise 2.0 at your company

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