The Tepper School of Business recently launched an iPad version of its popular alumni publication, Tepper Magazine, and true to Carnegie Mellon’s pioneering spirit, it has broken new ground in introducing one of the first truly interactive business school publications of its kind. Just like the iPad, the new magazine app will not only intrigue and inform, but will entertain, with an easy-to-use interface and broad appeal to alumni of all ages.
“There are experiences available in an app platform that you cannot achieve in print,” explained Deb Lantz, Tepper’s executive director of marketing and communications.
"Would you rather simply read a letter from Dean Dammon outlining the new curriculum or have the opportunity to see and hear him describe it, email him with your perspective, forward it to one of your classmates, then comment on it via LinkedIn? The app is exciting, engaging and, quite honestly, fun.”
Unlike the repurposed PDF versions employed by many online magazines, the Tepper Magazine iPad app is a unique experience that takes advantage of the interactive capabilities of the tablet, including animated charts and graphics, faculty interviews, direct links to faculty research, videos, photo slide shows and article sharing/forwarding capabilities. It allows the user to easily share items of interest with his or her social network and to take action quickly and simply. If, for example, you want to purchase a Tepper shirt, with the press of a button, you’re in the online store and completing the transaction. If you’d like to attend an alumni gathering, you can instantly register for any event over a six-month period.
To provide the convenience of print portability, 85% of the iPad magazine can ‘live’ right on your tablet, meaning subscribers won’t need an internet connection to enjoy the content and nearly all the interactive features. And for those hard-core page-turners who are resistant to trading physical paper for the virtual variety, the experience may be more “hands on” than anticipated.
“The Tepper Magazine app is a tremendously tactile experience,” explained Susan Limoncelli, creative director, who, alongside colleague and designer Joey Mancuso, designed and built the Tepper Magazine app. “You tap to make a slide show happen, you swipe across to turn the page. It is a very physical, tangible experience.”
The magazine app is just the first step in a broader Tepper School initiative toward extending its digital platform. It represents a move toward both the future of online communication and another goal to which the Tepper School and GSIA community remains committed – a greener future.
“As a green university, this is a significant option,” said Limoncelli. “The costs to produce the app are a fraction of the print version of the magazine. That was one of key reasons behind its development.”
The marketing team used the iPad alumni magazine as the test app for expanding into digital publications. The format offered broad audience coverage as well as the greatest breadth of content and interactive potential. Now the school is poised to target additional, traditional publications into new interactive channels.
The transformation of the Career Opportunities Center Employment Report is already underway as an online resource via www.tepper.cmu.edu. The historically bulky print brochure is prepared annually for recruiters and features salary statistics. For the first time, it will be available online on the Tepper website. Not only will it offer ease-of-use and convenience, but also interactivity. For instance, while examining starting salaries for marketing positions, a recruiter will also be able to access video of a student marketing intern or an employer.
“We were not interested in another me-too publication or glorified PDF,” said Lantz. “We were after a truly innovative app, and we’re proud that through the talent of our marketing team, we’ve been able to develop it in-house. We are now able to quickly leverage that learning to other publications.”
We work on the CMU campus, after all. It’s in our DNA to figure it out and innovate.”
The Tepper Magazine app for the iPad is available for free download at the iTunes app store.
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