The cover of Marketing magazine’s latest issue features four scratch-off boxes on the half-page gatefold. “It’s like having a lottery ticket in front of you. You can’t help yourself but scratch and reveal,” says executive publisher and editor-in-chief Christopher Loudon. “Rogers had used it inside various magazines in the past and advertisers had used it, but it had never been incorporated into a cover,” he says.
The cover also sports matte and gloss varnishes, pearlescent inks and raised varnish keylines that deliver a tactile experience to anyone who picks up an issue.
Loudon says the idea to enhance the cover with specialized print techniques was hatched by Vaughan, Ont.-based printer All Stick Label Ltd. The cover of the issue was designed by Marketing’s art director, Peter Zaver, who worked in tandem with the printer to choose how to augment the page with All Stick’s “amazingly long list” of print capabilities, he says.
The cover was done in stochastic print, which means it has a very high resolution, photo qaulity, says All Stick’s vice president of operations Stacy Daly. “The resolution is brighter, so it’s sharper and cleaner.”
“We’ve had nothing but positive feedback,” Loudon says. The scratch boxes tie into a feature story about four major TV network’s mid-season lineups. Once scratched, each box reveals each network’s prediction for their top rated show of the season.
Daly says the scratch boxes were covered with a flexographic UV ink, unlike lottery tickets which typically use latex. The cover was printed in one pass through a machine with 13 print heads, onto a glossy litho sheet. “It was very challenging but we’re getting better and better at doing these things,” he says.
All Stick printed just the covers and sent it to a third party to fold and glue the gatefold. The covers were then sent to Transcontinental where they were bound with the rest of the magazine.
All Stick specializes in “high end value add” printing and has been in business for 45 years and wants to use the cover to showcase its print capabilities. The printer covered the additional costs of the special printing techniques and got much of the required materials donated from suppliers who also want to use the cover to display their products. “It was kind of win, win, win, and it really didn’t cost us anything,” Loudon says.
There were some worries about whether the scratch and reveal material would flake off and get on readers’ hands, he says, but the printer used quality material that stays on the page until scratched. There was also a mild concern about people scratching the boxes at the newsstand and ruining issues without buying them, but Loudon doesn’t think it will be a major problem.
The cover sends a message to readers that Marketing is serious about media innovation, which is what much of the magazine’s content is devoted to, Loudon says. “We’re not only telling you what’s going on out there, we’re actually showing you.”
He also says the cover sends a message that print can be cutting edge and versatile. “It reinforces to the entire community that print is still one of the most dynamic media."
Marketing is published 21 times per year by Rogers Media with a paid circulation of 8,349.