BookFest Blog3


It’s that time of year in Edinburgh, again. Warm, long sunny evenings and the steady drumbeat of tourists marching up the Mile is continuing to grow as August approaches. The festival-season anticipation is palpable, as our beloved Edinburgh prepares to welcome back all forms of festival goodness – from International, to Fringe, and – a personal favourite – the Edinburgh International Book Festival. The excitement has only been amplified for us at ABC as we’ve had the pleasure of working on the creative campaign for Edinburgh’s 40th International Book Festival. As the city comes alive with literary fervour, we can’t help but feel a surge of excitement as we celebrate the joy of words and the magic of storytelling that fuelled our creative campaign.


Widely recognised as one of the greatest annual literary celebrations globally, this year’s book festival is truly dedicated to joy. This year the programme ranges from uplifting, optimistic thinking, to innovative and solutions focused ideas. It’s designed to inspire thinking aloud, collective speculation and discussion brought about by the power of the imagination. Whether written, spoken, sung, or illustrated, EIBF is a joyful and creative celebrations of words. 


With this in mind, we were delighted to put our creativity to use when designing a campaign for Edinburgh residents that speaks to the joy inspired by words. To be amplified with a significant amount of outdoor media (digital 6 sheets, bus supersides, posters and more) – we needed an idea that would stand out and cut-through in the busiest time of year for local marketing in Edinburgh’s festival season. We also needed something that could transfer easily to digital formats such as social and programmatic – and linked neatly to our above the line concept that audiences would see fleetingly in busy commuting zones around Edinburgh. Lastly, we needed a concept that illicits the joyful emotions attached to written and spoken word, at a glance.

Enter ‘Book Bliss’. We established a neat creative concept with three core visuals that illustrate different ideas of what blissful reading (or listening) might look like to an individual. Reading can be a deeply personal experience. One person’s idea of bliss might involve holiday reading – while another’s might be about family moments reading with their children. Tapping into our core audiences for this campaign (returning festival goers and families) we divised a concept speaking to examples of ‘book bliss’ with a simple design structure of integrating a book in a wider animated graphic. The hero image sees a 99er with a book in place of the flake, while our two secondary images see a book become a suitcase, and a book become a record player. All nudge at the joy elicited by written and sung/spoken words, and invite audiences to pontificate their own version of ‘Book Bliss’.


As the Book Festival returns this summer, the privilege of leading the creative campaign has been humbling. The event ignites a passion for reading, fosters intellectual dialogue, nurtures a sense of community, and celebrates the timeless magic of storytelling. It’s a pleasure to witness the city’s enthusiasm and to be part of an event that celebrates the written word and its profound impact on our lives. So, let’s come together, embrace the joy of words, and revel in our own personal expressions of Book Bliss.

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