Transition is always a tricky thing. No two people use the same organizational system, the same naming conventions, the same rabbit hole of folders. Nevertheless, we all step into our predecessor’s shoes, dive into the work, and hope to make sense of it on the other side. Beginning my work leading Ooligan’s marketing department has been no different. Lots of asking questions, searching around, and hoping that I’m doing the right thing. I could go on about the reams of spreadsheets and wealth of data that constitute Ooligan’s marketing work—it’s reorganization and increased utilization is my current focus—but I’d much rather tell you about my love triangle.

You see, under the wise guidance of Dory Athey and Alan Holley, marketing and social media got married last year. They took countless hours to critically reflect on how the social media landscape is changing the way we, as publishers, connect with our reading audience. And it’s true, what is social media if not the creation of a brand? And what is a brand if not a way of marketing yourself? It’s a natural fit, really. And now, our relationship has grown.

Completing our trifecta, we’ve opened up our marriage to design. With the increasing popularity of social media platforms like Instagram and Tumblr, and the changing functionality of Facebook and Twitter, it seems like everything on the internet can benefit from design. And thereby, all our marketing efforts will benefit from design as well.

To help facilitate this process—and make the relationship official—we’re now creating a whole suite of collateral to promote each title. In the past few years, Ooligan book covers have grown increasingly beautiful—the handmade aesthetic of books like this and this, modern minimalism like this, and ornate illustrations like this. But we can’t keep using the cover again and again. Instead, we’re tapping into Ooligan’s wealth of creativity to make additional designs that complement our titles and help set the scene. In reality, we’re better branding each and every one of our books, making it more recognizable, and communicating more efficiently. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words. Give or take a few.

With new gusto to advertise our books, I look forward to helping Ooligan better brand itself over the next year. Social media helps even the playing field between big and small publishing houses. Yes, there are still pay-per-click ads and sponsored posts, but social media benefits the most from attention, dedication, and creative content. Fortunately, Ooligan has ample supply of all three thanks to the energetic and passionate grad students who constitute the press. Stay tuned to Ooligan’s social media channels this year for some great books and beautiful designs.

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