Evolving History To Create A Bright Future For Eastlife - Attribute Design
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Evolving History To Create A Bright Future For Eastlife

Continuity gives us roots; change gives us branches, letting us stretch and grow and reach new heights.

Many businesses are now finding themselves in a position where user-behaviour requires an adaptation of their business model. With Eastlife, it was a change from a print to digital focus, and creating a seamless transition that built on over a decade of business.

The client

Eastlife magazine has been doing the rounds for over 10 years now. Housed in a stylish B5 glossy title, the publication is dedicated to bringing you the latest news, trends and events from across East Anglia. The title features everything from lifestyle, food and drink, home and garden, property, health, theatre, arts and most importantly the latest events, together with first-class advertising opportunities and is available free of charge in supermarkets, stations and other high-footfall areas.

The challenge

We were approached by Eastlife when their inhouse developer was moving on to pastures new. With a website already driving over 5000 hits per week, losing the website would be hugely detrimental to the business and its advertising revenues. With multiple designers having worked on both the digital and print platforms over the last decade, the two media outlets had become disjointed and disconnected. With brand recognition becoming more and more vital, they wanted us to create a transition period that would allow the website to continue operation whilst the print design was pulled back to the 21st Century. Once completed we would be tasked with bringing the digital elements back into the print styling to create a single brand image and unify the separate elements of the business.

The solution

Print design

With any project of this nature, we like to get our hands on as many resources as possible. With a free print publication, 10 years in business is no mean feat, and Eastlife had built a reputation with its readers and advertisers that would be crucial for the redesign.

With print dimensions set at B5 (240mm x 168mm), previous market research suggested a readership of over 60,000 with a largely female demographic. With a large range of topics included and limited space to play with, a clean and contemporary styling would allow us to distinguish sections whilst maintaining a consistent style throughout the publication.

One of the first issues we addressed in recreating the magazine was to eliminate colour. A ruby red shade had been modified and adjusted across all platforms over the 10-year history, so we neutralised the colour palette, opting for a greyscale setup, to provide consistency and tie into our new contemporary styling.

The next challenge was to address the layout. Previous issues had struggled with identity, and layouts had become cluttered and confusing. To get the most from the available space, we simplified. Creating a series of two or reduced width single column layouts, we would increase readability and create a more user-friendly experience. Another benefit of this approach was the ability to create white-space and increase line height, reducing clutter and making the publication easier to read. Coupling this with a monotone colour palette helps create an elegance, and pushes Eastlife back into an upmarket category, in line with its origins.

Digital design

With any project of this nature, we like to get our hands on as many resources as possible. With a free print publication, 10 years in business is no mean feat, and Eastlife had built a reputation with its readers and advertisers that would be crucial for the redesign.

With print dimensions set at B5 (240mm x 168mm), previous market research suggested a readership of over 60,000 with a largely female demographic. With a large range of topics included and limited space to play with, a clean and contemporary styling would allow us to distinguish sections whilst maintaining a consistent style throughout the publication.

One of the first issues we addressed in recreating the magazine was to eliminate colour. A ruby red shade had been modified and adjusted across all platforms over the 10-year history, so we neutralised the colour palette, opting for a greyscale setup, to provide consistency and tie into our new contemporary styling.

The next challenge was to address the layout. Previous issues had struggled with identity, and layouts had become cluttered and confusing. To get the most from the available space, we simplified. Creating a series of two or reduced width single column layouts, we would increase readability and create a more user-friendly experience. Another benefit of this approach was the ability to create white-space and increase line height, reducing clutter and making the publication easier to read. Coupling this with a monotone colour palette helps create an elegance, and pushes Eastlife back into an upmarket category, in line with its origins.

The result

One of the key benefits of our work with Eastlife, was their openness to change. By allowing us to look at the bigger picture, we were able to unify their business and boost the brand. They appreciated the concept would be a lengthy one (up to 12 months) but were looking at future proofing a business model that had quickly become outdated.

Whilst there were instant gains in print pickup and web traffic, longer term advantages included increase in advertising revenue, through increased opportunities and inflated pricing. Google rankings have also seen a steady rise, whilst website bounce rate has been reduced significantly.

With the new platforms in place, Eastlife can now focus on what they do best. Producing noteworthy editorial and building traffic through a dynamic digital platform and stylised print pickup.

Finding a balance in the business can be tricky. With Eastlife, they built a reputation on print, with the digital aspect being an added benefit for many years. Due to changes in user behaviour, the digital would now be the focal point of any future advertising revenue. By bringing the two platforms together, through matching categories and styling, we could help create a streamlined transition between the two elements. By creating an evergreen platform, we allow the team at Eastlife to take control of their content and build their brand internally.

We pride ourselves on helping business create a unity between their products or services. Whilst many may see the need for a design overhaul on their print or digital marketing materials, we build our designs with the user at heart. As a business, we see great design as design that works, and this user-friendly approach is what sets us apart. If you’re looking to give your business an overhaul, or just simply need some business advice, why not get in touch today?

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Attribute Design
https://www.attribute-design.co.uk/
Attribute Design was founded in 2018 with the aim to provide marketing and design campaigns that look great and work better. Driven by results, we work closely with businesses to learn what makes you tick and share your message.