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Yearbook Cover of the week #1307

 

 

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We have even created some custom clip art to coordinate with cover # 1307.  We used this custom clip art combined with our Quick Creator clip art to make a fun portrait page!

Call your School Annual Representative to have the custom clip art uploaded to your School Annual Online yearbook site:

 

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Now is a good time to check your 2013-2014 cover selection off of your to do list.

 

Click on the following link to submit your cover:

http://info.schoolannual.com/help-wanted


Yearbook Cover of the week- #1304

 

School Annual

We have even created some custom clip art to coordinate with cover # 1304.  We used this custom clip art combined with our Quick Creator backgrounds to make a fun portrait page!

Call your School Annual Representative to have the custom clip art uploaded to your School Annual Online yearbook site:

 describe the image

 

Now is a good time to check your 2013-2014 cover selection off of your to do list.

 

Click on the following link to submit your cover:

http://info.schoolannual.com/help-wanted


Yearbook Cover of the week #1110

 

School Annual

 

We have even created some custom clip art to coordinate with cover # 1110.  Call your School Annual Representative to have it uploaded to your yearbook site:

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If you have not submitted your cover selection for the 2013-2014 season.

Now would be a good time!

 

Click on the following link to submit you cover:

http://info.schoolannual.com/help-wanted

 

Yearbook Design- What to work on over the holidays.

Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on the things you’re thankful for.  At School Annual, we are thankful to be able to share our holiday time with our family and friends.

Because of this, we’ll be closed on Thursday, November 29th and Friday, November 30th. 

We know this is a great weekend to make a push on designing your yearbook, but there’s nothing worse than booting up that computer on Saturday afternoon and finding out you can’t login, your page ladder isn’t showing, or your parent uploaders are calling you with an error message.

We want to make your Holiday Design Weekend easy as pie, so here are a few tips we’d like to share before we all head our separate ways on Wednesday:

1) Know your login information and try it now.

If you’ve always logged on from school, you may not have that information at home.  You’ll need your job number and job year (usually 2014), your Adviser or Staff password, and the site address (www.schoolannualonline.com). 

2) Keep your computer up-to-date.

Browsers usually update themselves automatically.  If you have your computer permissions set to “ask” whenever there’s an update to install, then you may not have the latest version of Adobe Flash Player (it’s a free download at www.adobe.com – and Adobe has install documentation available).  If you can’t see thumbnails on your Page Ladder, or pages on your Page Designer, there’s a pretty good chance your Flash Player is the cause.

3) Use different browsers.

Like we stated above, browsers usually update themselves automatically, but sometimes the updates to things like Toolbars or Add-Ons don’t always install correctly or are launched with “compatibility issues” (meaning they don’t work quite right!).  We think it’s a good idea to have a second internet browser on your system, because each browser is a little different.  What works well on one, may not work so well on another.

4) Check and update your Image Share settings.

If you activated an Image Share site (Plan > Image Share) to collect pictures from your parent uploaders, make a quick check to see that your start date is at least today’s date, your end date is at least Monday, December 2nd, and that the Max Number of Images allowed for the Inbox is at least 500. You’ll need to be logged in as Adviser to do this. That should get you through the weekend without parents telling you they can’t log in or the max number of images has been reached. 

5) Test your image upload.

                Some advisers use the holiday weekend to upload all the images they’ve collected since the start of school.  If you’re one of those, make sure you do a test upload.  Images should be high resolution (300ppi) and in JPG/TIF/PNG format.  If you are uploading directly from your camera USB cable and receive an error, offload your images to your hard drive and try again.  Like browsers, cameras can be finicky.

6) Schedule your upload time.

Of course you want to spend time with family, but if you’re off working on the yearbook, they may decide it’s time to watch some streaming sports video or do some online gaming.  All of these take up a lot of bandwidth and this can slow your upload speed.  Since “a watched pot never boils”, grab a group of maybe 10 images and set them to upload…and then walk away!  Or better yet, plan to start those uploads while the family is gathered for the Thanksgiving Parades on TV and your network connection is free.

7) Wear stretch pants to Thanksgiving dinner.

Okay, yes – we are being funny.  But working your yearbook should be FUN.  If you find you’re having difficulties with anything, it may be time to grab another piece of pie and relax for a bit to clear out the design cobwebs (we get them too!!).  Adviser Central (click HELP from your site menu) has lots of searchable articles, videos, tips & tricks to help you work through items step by step. 

If you’re really stuck, open a support ticket via email (support@schoolannual.com) or through Adviser Central.  Make sure to include your job number, a valid email address so we can respond on Monday morning, and describe what you were trying to do (page numbers or image folders are always a plus) and then find another yearbook task – at this time of year, there’s plenty to do and plan for.

We hope your holiday time is one of happiness and sharing, because you as a yearbook adviser are sharing a great gift – a memory for a child!

 

Diane Albert

Supervisor of tech support

 

Yearbook Ideas- Where to start?

We asked the question to the School Annual Yearbook Experts:

“I need help with ideas for my yearbook, where should I start…?”

Here is a list of their answers.  We hope this helps you to get started planning your yearbook this year:

-Planning Guide- The planning guide is located in your yearbook kit.  This will be sent to you once you have signed up to work with School Annual.  It is a great tool to help you get started.

-Think of a theme

-Is your school celebrating something special this year?  This could be a great foundation for your yearbook theme.

-I pick my cover first so I can start a theme.

-I start with my yearbook sales so I can tell the parents about Image Share. (For more information on Image Share- visit www.support.schoolannual.com)  Need free sales supplies?  Give us a call at 1-800-436-6030.

-Look at websites that are popular with your kids- it’s not always the content that draws them; it can be the website layout, the icons, the colors, the font.   Do they like chaotic and lots of color, or something “cleaner” with minimal text and a lot of whitespace.

-Check out magazines – magazine publishers are a great place to check out Candid Templates.  When you sell millions of magazines, there’s probably a good reason.  Where are text boxes placed in relation to images, how many different fonts are used on a single page, how are headlines or call outs handled.

-Don’t discount things happening in the community which affect your students.  If your school /school board allows it, consider Boy / Girl Scout awards, community awards, or those who have volunteered or done leadership work.  These may be the very students who don’t see much coverage in a “traditional” yearbook.   

-I like to start with the cover.  I will pick one of our standard covers and then take pieces from that to create a theme for the book.  The way you guys have done that with the cover to cover piece that is in our kit this year has helped me tremendously.  I also get ideas from our clip art and template books with themes and new layout ideas.

-Start taking pictures.  Jot down the activities you want to include.  

-Ask your Yearbook Expert for sample yearbooks from other schools.

-Search yearbook themes on the web.

-Have a art contest and base theme around cover winner!

-First I would get a committee together. I feel that it’s important to have some assistance with this project. You want be able to collaborate with someone to create and design the layout for the book, you also want to be able to assign someone to take pictures at the various events, and last but least you want to have someone to proof the book for spelling errors and corrections.

-You should start by looking at other yearbooks to find out what you do like and what you do not want to include in the yearbook.  Ask the school to see copies of the yearbooks from years before.

We hope this helps you get started.

 

 

Uploading yearbook images- Image Share VS. Image Library

Big I, little i…what begins with I?  Image Share AND Image Library

Let’s look at the differences and what’s best in certain situations. 

If you’re an adviser or a staff member with a School Annual Online login, IMAGE LIBRARY is your special tool because it gives you super powers!

Your School Annual Online login allows you full access to the IMAGE LIBRARY to edit and organize, but you can BULK UPLOAD as well.  You can pick an entire folder of images from your computer, select the UPLOAD IMAGES feature and upload all of those images while you go do something else, like read the School Annual blog or post on our Facebook page!  Hint – use your shortcut key CTRL+A to select all images in a folder.

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Here’s an Adviser Central article on how to use the Image Library to upload:  http://support.schoolannual.com/entries/21738828-Upload-Activity-Images 

So then what about Image Share??? 

If you’ve set up an Image Share site, this is to collect images from people that you DO NOT want to have full access to your School Annual Online site.  Perhaps  you post the link on your School’s web page or Facebook page.  “Hey, we’re collecting images from next week’s All Star Game, so make sure you upload any great pix!”   Then you post that link you created when you saved your Image Share setup page.

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Those moms, dads, older siblings, neighbors…they upload their images to your Image Share account – but they can only upload 10 IMAGES AT A TIME.  

That gives those photographers enough “slots” to give you some great shots, but not enough for them to overwhelm you with pictures.  The benefit to having them use Image Share is that they MUST fill in certain pieces of information – like a particular student in the picture and their own email address.  You will know who uploaded what images when you check the image details. 

 

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Here’s a video tutorial specifically for your Image Share users:  http://support.schoolannual.com/entries/22488422-Image-Share-for-Parents

I assigned a parent photographer to snap the homecoming parade – but now she has 80 pictures!  You want her to upload 10 at a time?

That choice is up to you – if you’re assigning  someone to take pictures, consider allowing them to have your Staff password for a few hours so they can upload all of those images at once.  When they’re finished, simply call us or open a ticket to have your Staff password changed!  And they too can use our Adviser Central step-by step articles so you don’t have to instruct them. 

If you’d rather not give them access to your yearbook creation, that’s totally up to you.  Give them the link and let THEM choose the best pictures to capture the moment. 

Whichever way you choose to allow image uploads, the key is making sure those images get onto your site so you have what you need to create great candid pages!

Diane C Albert

Supervisor of Tech Support

 

Help! I don’t know how to pick my yearbook cover!

As I begin my yearbook project one of the most important decisions I have to make is picking my cover.

When I start to create my school’s yearbook cover I try to think of a few things:

  1. Do I want a yearbook cover theme to carry through my whole book?
  2. Do I want to represent our school colors for the cover?
  3. Do I want to make this simple and choose a cover designed by the yearbook publisher?

Honestly, I normally go with number 3. Otherwise, I tend to over think the cover process. Most yearbook publisher will offer anywhere from 20-40 standard yearbook covers that are included in your yearbook price.  I pick out my top 3 covers and then grab a few of my daughter’s friends to pick the winner.  The girls think they are the “cat’s meow” and I become a “cool” mom for a few minutes.

Once, my cover is chosen I contact the publisher to make my cover reservation.

Then I can concentrate on the rest of the book. 

To see a few of the School Annual standard design covers click HERE .

To view a cover video click on the arrow. 

 

What to expect from your yearbook price quote...

You have called around to 10 yearbook publishers.  You have scribbled notes in a notebook. There are prices and information everywhere and you can't even remember the name or the people talked to.  Now what?

First we want you to be aware, not all yearbook companies are the same. It is a lot more than just a price/book.  Do you want a cheap yearbook from a printer?  Or do you want to offer a comprehensive yearbook program to your school from a publisher who has 60 years of experience?

At School Annual we want to prepare you for exactly what you should expect to get in your yearbook price quote.  You should be informed of all the information about your yearbook in a clear and concise way.  All your questions should be answered up front and EVERYTHING should be sent to you in writing.  

After you call School Annual and talk to your Yearbook Expert, we will then email you your quote in writing.  The quote will contain:

1.  Price/Book for all page and copy counts you request

2.  Information on delivery dates and turn around times

3.  Information on sales tax and what to do if you are tax exempt

4.  Information on how you will create your yearbook

5.  Information on how you will create your cover and if there are costs

6.  Pricing for any add ons such as cover personalizations

7.  All that is included in your price/book 

Shipping

Sales supplies

Creation tool

Yearbook Kit...

Don't be afraid to ask about hidden or additional fees.  You should get an up front and honest answer.  With School Annual, the answer is always "No, there are no hidden fees."

Not only should you get a quote in writing, you should also be sent free yearbook samples. Not every book is printed the same way.  Pay special attention to the binding of the book. Give the pages a good tug and see if you can pull them out.  

And don't worry, once School Annual sends you all this information, your Yearbook Expert will make sure to follow up with you weekly. Not only will you remember School Annual, you remember your yearbook expert by name.

 

Need something to help you stay organized?  Download our evaluation checklist to compare all the materials you got.

yearbook evaluation checklist.pdf

 

 

 

 

A true story of customer service

What happens when you know what you’re looking for, but the company you’re dealing with doesn’t have solutions?

My teammates know I have incredible consumer loyalty.  I brag about my experiences with my online shoe store, my cowboy boot store, the coffee vendor I use, or the support software we use to log your School Annual issues.

When you WOW me, you have my loyalty.  It takes a lot to shake that trust.

I shared a recent experience with my teammates about what I expected from my personal planner pad company and how my WOW factor was totally flattened.  It made me question my loyalty to them.

You would think as a technology supervisor that I have the latest gadgets to keep my schedule running smoothly.  I don’t.  I live and die by my paper planner.

This summer after some recent surgery, I emailed that favorite planner company explaning why I’d like to see an outdated sample of a smaller sized spiral bound planner.  I wanted to touch and feel and see if this would fit better into my life.

Five days later, I received a #10 letter envelope with 3 folded sheets of 7 ring binder planner paper samples. 

So I went to Facebook - “Hey, I love your products, but I wanted to try this and asked for a sample.”   The response was “they don’t mail well”.

That was the end of the exchange.  That didn’t answer my question and my customer service person didn’t make any further attempt to get me closer to holding a smaller spiral bound planner so that I could ultimately place my new order.

At School Annual, we have a great TEAM of people working for you.  You’ve probably noticed when you phone our office that even if you ask for your yearbook expert, we will still ask if there is something we can help you with.  If we don’t have an immediate answer, we’re going to ask more questions to understand exactly what you want to accomplish. 

Did you know that almost half of our staff members are or have been advisers in their own schools?  Your question is OUR question; your issue is OUR issue.  We’ve probably asked it ourselves!

We have samples to send you and we are proud of those.  These are customers who are willing to share their books because they had a great experience.

Did you know that those cover and clipart books in your Yearbook Kit are also “samples” - we create and print them in the same way we print your yearbook. 

In our Support Department, we use our own School Annual Online software to create the printed Online User Manual for your kit.  By the time you start working on your site, we know how to help you solve those things you’ll want to do as an adviser.

At School Annual, we do some pretty unique things to help you come up with ways to sell and create. We want to solve your dilemmas – that doesn’t make you a demanding customer to us – but it might make you a demanding customer to a competitor if you asked the same of them.  We take OWNERSHIP in our products and our service to you.

I had to find my own solution to my planner problem – I ordered an end-of-year product at a significantly reduced cost.  My rep never mentioned that as something to consider so I could try the product.

At School Annual, we work with our peers and our production colleagues to find ways WE can help accomplish your goal.  We communicate with each other so that we create the best possible Customer Experience when it comes to creating your yearbook.

Got Questions? Need Help?  Just ask.  Our team is ready to WOW you.

 

Diane Albert

Supervisor of Tech Support

Five Reasons Why I Don’t Run… by Lori Polkinghorn, Marketing Manager

Several members of the School Annual Team competed in a Hard Core Mudd Run this past weekend.  Special kudos goes out to Todd Judd, Dustin Shirah, Kate Bates, and Kerri Barton for your hours of training and dedication.  Guess what?  You’ll never see me participate in a run, and here’s why:

  1. I don’t want to.  I have no desire to run, get all sweaty, and push myself to the point of throwing up.  I’m really comfortable in my jammies reading Susan Mallery.
  2. I like being soft.  Getting toned and muscular isn’t really soft.
  3. I would rather diet to fit into my jeans.  When my pants get to be floods, I know my hips have gotten too big.  It’s easier to just not eat the bad stuff than to get special clothes on that really must match, and get my entire family organized and watched (because what mom can just go out and run without making arrangements?)
  4. When can I run?  I get up in the middle of the night because my little one needs water.  I’m up before daybreak to get the family organized and out the door.  I’m out at lunch buying toilet paper because we are always out. (Why is that?) I’m at the soccer field by 5:30 for my daughter (did I mention I’m working in between all this?). I’m up until 10 with homework, and baths, and then I collapse with Susan Mallery’s latest book to mind flush.
  5. I don’t need the pressure. While I believe everyone needs an outlet, one that comes with arrangements, demands, and expectations aren’t for me.

And did I say I am also a yearbook adviser, scrap booker and QVC shopper?  I probably should just change my career to jammy wearing, Susan Mallery reader.  I wonder how satisfying that job would be?  For me …. Priceless!

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