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Austin Peay teen billboards: funny type, serious intent

November 5, 2001

What's up with the STRange capiTALization on the billboards? It's a question several faculty and staff members have asked the Office of Public Relations and Marketing recently.

It's no mistake, says Bill Persinger, director of graphic design, who, along with graphic design manager Charlotte Carlin, created the layout for the billboards and print ads in the campaign. "The type is designed to look a bit 'rebellious,'" he says, "to go against what's 'normal'-a trait common to teenagers."

The vibrant color of the photos was chosen for much the same reason: to give it "edge" so high school students notice it, perceive it as 'cool.'

The boards are getting a lot of attention, according to admissions recruiters, who encounter recruiting staff from other schools. "Other schools have been trying to find out which ad agency did the campaigns and what else we're doing," one noted.

"Research on teen prospects suggests they're sick of seeing students lounging in the grass with a brick building and a clock tower in the background," says Debbie Denton, marketing manager. "In order to stand out, we decided to do something completely different. Something fresh and unexpected. We think this campaign fits the bill."