From the Nominator
HEY! is Nanyang Technological University’s award-winning magazine that is conceptualised as a publication for the young with its bold use of photos (all taken using smartphones), a breezy editorial style, catchy headlines, and engaging augmented reality features. It offers a new way to engage and entertain the smartphone generation with creative storytelling that uses space, sound, and movement through augmented reality (AR).
This brand journalism project was conceived to raise awareness of NTU’s strengths, and build positive perceptions of the university amongst students and younger alumni. When NTU’s new president launched his NTU Smart Campus vision in 2018, the communication team reinforced the new brand positioning by relaunching HEY! as a “smart magazine” that combines print seamlessly with augmented reality. The new magazine was conceptualised and executed in-house without any increase in budget or headcount.
When scanned with the augmented reality app, HEY! pages come alive with 3D models, 3D animations, 360-degree videos, and audio creatively applied to headlines, photos, and illustrations. For instance, a HEY! cover featuring an NTU hall room turns into a 360-degree room tour when scanned. Students interact with the magazine and get creative, for example, by placing 3D models of home décor items virtually in their own dorms.
Student contributors and smartphone photography were used to reflect the view of the world through the eyes of the target audience of “digital natives.”
The revamped magazine exceeded its communication targets and has been recognised with prestigious global awards for raising the bar for communication in higher education.
From the Judges
NTU's entry stole the show in this category. The entry had clearly defined goals that not only were met, but exceeded expectations, along with metrics to back it up. The nomination was engaging and incredibly creative, with thoughtful and intentional execution. This entry went beyond and above, with a very innovative approach that did not break the bank. This nomination checked off all the boxes...and then some!