In March 2013, WiredPente was approached by American Printer magazine to help them develop a new concept in trade publication. American Printer wanted to launch a magazine that was personalized to each of their subscribers and used QR codes to link the print from the magazine to content in the online space.

Having attempted variable in a couple of earlier issues, they recognized the need for WiredPente’s expertise in variable strategy and design.

With Bob Pente at the helm as creative director, and the rest of the team in place, we undertook a complete re-design of the magazine from the grid up, developing the flow of the book, the visual language and immensely improving the overall aesthetic in the process.

With a variable component required at the heart of the concept, we programmed each issue to produce individualized copies for each subscriber and established the infrastructure to allow for cross-channel relevance. As a quarterly, fully variable, 56-page trade publication, it was ambitious to say the least – editorial content, covers and advertising throughout the magazine changed based on the information we had for each subscriber.

A subscriber working in senior management for a wide format printer in the eastern U.S. would receive one version of the magazine whereas technical staff for a publisher on the west coast would receive another, and yet another totally different iteration would be delivered to a sales person working for a general printer in Chicago.

In addition to the magazine, being brand stewards, it also fell to WiredPente to design and produce the materials necessary to support the magazine nationally in a very active trade show space with banners, collateral material and super graphics.