From the Nominator
"Iowa State University set out to develop a flagship publication that supports the advancement of the university and strengthens Iowa State’s brand across multiple audiences with two primary goals: reputation building and engagement. The new publication was to reimagine the existing ISU Alumni Association member magazine, expand reach to new audiences, and maintain an exclusive member benefit.
Our publication goals, defined by university leadership, were to:
• Enhance understanding of Iowa State University goals, priorities, direction, and impact.
• Tell the most compelling, meaningful, entertaining, and land-grant-mission-in-action stories that advance the university.
• Strengthen relationships among Iowa State University, stakeholders, and other key audiences.
After the former alumni magazine editor retired, the alumni association hired a new editor to work with a higher education publishing consultant to bring the publication to life. An editorial board consisting of representatives from ISU, ISU Alumni Association, and ISU Foundation was created to support the effort and provide ongoing editorial direction. 2communique was the selected consultant. The editor worked closely with 2communique for one year as they conducted audience research and developed an editorial strategy and a new brand design. 2communique also designed the debut issue.
The key to Iowa Stater’s success was the magazine-within-a-magazine approach that maintains exclusivity for ISU Alumni Association members via high-engagement content only available in the print edition while expanding inclusivity via a majority of magazine content made immediately available online for repurposing to additional audiences."
From the Judges
The judges were impressed by the daring decision to produce four distinct covers, a move that ultimately proved effective and successful. The bold choice added a unique element of variety and intrigue to the publication, capturing attention and engaging readers from the start. Moreover, the judges noted the strong interior page design of Iowa Stater, which further enhanced the overall appeal and quality of the publication.