Ascension Magazine

Content Strategy, Copywriting, PR and media

Ascension Magazine aims to inspire Indigenous and ethnically diverse women in Australia to love, appreciate and relish the gift of life. Ascension Magazine both online and in print explores life’s many treasures; beauty, culture and creativity through enriching and empowering content. Their desire is to liberate our readers to love the skin they are in and embrace their infinite power.

At the very inception of the magazine in 2013, I helped Ascension Magazine founder, model and Indigenous Australian beauty maven Sasha Sarago to create key brand documents for Australia’s first fashion and lifestyle magazine for ethnically diverse women and indigenous women.

Challenges

Prior to the launch of the magazine’s first issue, Sasha needed a full suite of launch documents, such as a media release and media kit which would help her to sell advertising space in the debut edition of the print magazine. She also needed a sales document which would help her to crowd-fund the launch of the magazine.

Ascension magazine media kit cover

Solutions

I brainstormed with Sasha and together we came up with core branding concepts for the copy, which would tell an amazing and inspiring story of the magazine and its uniqueness from all other existing fashion magazines in Australia. This included:

  • A media release highlighting the launch of the magazine.
  • Go Fund Me launch campaign sales copy
  • A media kit
  • Lyrical, prose-inspired brand storytelling

Brand storytelling

The brand storytelling needed to be lyrical, poetic and inspiring. In terms of copy style, I used as inspiration the editorial of Oprah Winfrey’s O magazine along with the writing of Maya Angelou. However this brand storytelling couldn’t be derivative at all. It needed to be fresh, uniquely Australian and unique to the spirit and values of this powerful collective of people and their robust potential for greatness.

Ascension magazine media kit cover

As such, myself along with Sasha wrote the following prose to encapsulate the soul and spirit of the magazine:

 

Spirit speaks to us. She guides us in an unspoken language. Spirit whispers softly in our ears.

 Ssshhh…Listen! Can you hear her?

 Spirit urges us to listen to our intuition. But we hardly ever do. Why is this? As women, we’re conditioned to ignore our power. To play small and conform to a foreign ideal that places us in constant conflict and turmoil with ourselves and the world.

 Ascension Magazine is a spiritual revolution. Right now we are in hot pursuit to reclaim Spirit.

It is time to give ourselves permission to transcend everything that no longer serves us.

 This is called Emancipation.

 When we realise that we’re infinite beings; we become capable of everything our heart desires.

The universe never meant for us to act in desperation, but in faith, expecting abundance.

 Our ancestors are aware of this wisdom.

 They watch and wait patiently for us to understand this universal truth.

Culture beats like a drum in our hearts. It runs deep through our bloodlines.

It’s the glue that binds us to each other. Our language, totems, dances, songs, our spiritual home is where we derive strength and purpose.

 Culture is never lost. From all parts of the globe, we Australian women share a common reverence for culture.

 With many new dialogues of ancestry, tradition and contemporary expression these are signs of a cultural renaissance.

 What sets Ascension Magazine apart from every other glossy magazine, is our courage to see the world in colour rather than in black and white.

 Ascension is the magic that happens when women dare to be fearless and release the goddess power within.

Welcome to Australia’s first Indigenous and Ethnic Women’s Lifestyle Magazine.

 

Media Kit

For the media kit I thoroughly researched the fashion media landscape in Australia to find out about evidence that the media thus far had never been ethnically diverse and had been predominantly white. I didn’t need to look very far to find that evidence. This went into the media kit as a persuasive arguments to potential advertisers of the untapped potential they were missing.

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Media release for launch

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Results

The magazine is now in its fifth year and has evolved from being a print only magazine to becoming an online and social hub for ethnically diverse women in Australia with a vibrant community of dedicated followers.

The magazine has gone from strength to strength over the years, and I like to think that this is in part because of my initial help to kick-start the publication at its very inception.

Advertisements

Access CN – Minenssey

Content Strategy, Copywriting

Access CN are a Sydney-based marketing agency that enlisted the help of Total Marketing in order to generate brand storytelling for a new Australian brand of mineral make-up, Minenssey.

Minenssey is a rapidly growing cosmetics brand that targets the Asian market with natural mineral skincare range for women of all ages and skin concerns.

Challenges

The team at Access CN needed the make-up brand to have a native speaking Australian tone of voice. They needed the language to sound natural, polished, sophisticated, lyrical and poetic.

Minenssey’s overall brand storytelling needed to be a form of accessible glamour and affordable beauty that would cater to a middle income audience of Asian women.

Solutions

Athena worked with the Access CN Marketing Manager Amelia Hu and came up with the right language to convey the brand storytelling and product marketing for both the website and product packaging.

She generated lyrical and poetic product descriptions for both the Minenssey product packaging and the website.

Minenssey-Australian-Clay-Hydrating-Mask-White+Clay-Flannel-Flower-Rosella-1.jpg

She checked that Minenssey’s online shopping experience was being optimised in the best way, to ensure that they were going to attract customers. She did this by looking at their returns and delivery policy. She made recommendations on how they could lower the cost for delivery, and clarified and clearly explained their returns policy, making the products more appealing to customers.

She ensured that the FAQs on their website were clear, and not going to lead to a frustrating experience from the potential customer’s perspective.

She fact-checked the medicinal properties and purported benefits of ingredients in the products. Then in some cases she advised when the wording on the product packaging needed to be slightly altered so that it wouldn’t be potentially misleading to the customer.

She proof-read all of the terms and conditions and privacy policy and ensured that it all matched according to Australian online consumer law.

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Results

Amelia Hu, Access CN’s marketing manager was happy with the work of Athena from Total Marketing. In an email she provided this feedback.

“Hi Athena, you are one of the best vendors I have ever worked with. Thank you so much for all of your information and suggestions for Minenssey, they are extremely helpful. The copy on the website looks really beautiful and the client is really happy with it.” Amelia Hu, Minenssey Marketing Manager, Access CN.

minenssey.PNG

 

eHarmony

Content Strategy, Copywriting

Background

While working for an agency in the UK I worked directly with the UK arm of the eHarmony Group and helped them to create an Australian sub-brand for their brand. They were expanding to create an Australian website and needed to optimise the copy on the site for a new audience.

Implementation

  • As an Australian I had a good understanding of the sort of colloquialisms that they should use and so I helped to create their tone of voice document which was unique to the Australian market.
  • I planned and executed a content strategy involving on-site blog content, off-site third party blog sites around the theme of Christmas gift-giving for new couples along with infographic gift guides.
  • Liaised with content writers and designers to create infographics, blog posts and feature articles related to dating during the Christmas period.
  • Content ideation around Melbourne versus Sydney styles of dating and other Australian oriented content around regional Australian areas (wine region in SA).
  • Collaborated with the digital engagement team to create Australian relevant PPC ad content and landing pages for driving conversions.

Results

  • The eHarmony Christmas infographic gift guide was incredibly successful in terms of organic sharing and actually made it to the reddit front page at one stage. It was reused in subsequent seasonal campaigns by eHarmony and on their social media in the years following.
  • The high quality on-site blog resulted in an increase in web traffic to the regional AU eHarmony site and was used in conversion rate optimisation for increasing sign-ups on the site. Here’s an example of a post I did  for eHarmony.
  • The eHarmony team saw the editorial tone of voice consulting as helpful in the creation of the Australian sub-site and useful in targeting the new site to a new audience in a meaningful and authentic way.

eHarmony Christmas Gift-Giving Guide

First draft of the infographic went something like this… 

case_studies_infographic_eHarmony_

The final designed version…

The Coronary Atlas

Content Strategy, Copywriting, Graphic design, Web design

The Coronary Atlas project aims to understand the reasons coronary stents fail, how we can improve them and help more patients effectively. I helped the researchers by building a website and doing all of the graphic design, web design, Google Analytics integration, on-site SEO optimisation and some of the content.

I helped them to articulate their message through visual and written content assets so that they could talk about complex academic concepts in a way that anyone could understand.

Design showreel 

 

During the planning and scoping phase of the design, I did some usability assessments in the form of interviews, surveys and looking at the design of competitors sites. I then worked with the researchers to design a website that was usable, relevant and designed with the various stakeholders in mind who are of interest to the researchers.

The final design consisted of a general interest page that was written in a simpler language called Global Context. This page was a reference guide to coronary artery disease and featured an interactive infographic. This contrasted to other pages which were research focused and written with other researchers in mind.

Infographic creation, interactive design

Working along with the researchers, I created an infographic which demonstrates in a clear and articulate manner, a very complex engineering and research pipeline. I also designed all of the icons, the interactive elements and slides.

Coronary Atlas infographic - Optimising Stenting outcomes by Athena Dennis.

Coronary Atlas infographic – Optimising Stenting outcomes by Athena Dennis.

Master of Health Leadership – University of Auckland

Copywriting, Graphic design, Web design

I managed the design and content for a new website for the University of Auckland, built using the Divi theme in WordPress.

– Web design
– Graphic design
– Planning and wireframing
– Writing web copy
– Managing content writers
– Client and stakeholder consultation
– Budgeting and timing management

Background

Programme Director for the Master of Health leadership (MHL) Dr Jude McCool enlisted my help to create a new website for the Master of Health Leadership, a new Masters programme for the Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences.

Implementation

Sticking closely to the University branding and marketing guidelines, I created a custom website using WordPress and the Divi Builder template. This template allows almost infinite flexibility in terms of design and content.
This included creating custom interactive tabs featuring information, full width slides. The sourcing of suitably engaging stock photography. The creation of an on-site blog where students and lecturers could communicate and contribute thought leadership articles. I also interviewed key international students and featured them throughout the website. I identified key important information regarding the selling points for the Masters programme which weren’t identified before. Namely the potential growth in salary after completing the degree. This was turned into an interactive infographic which dynamically depicted the growth in salary.

As part of the intuitive and user-friendly navigation, the FAQs section has a drop down menu of interactive tabs which answered common pain points for students around fees, scholarships, starting dates, deadlines, lecturers, contact information and other vital information.

The result was an engaging and practical website which answered the main pain points of the target audience. The Programme Director Jude McCool along with other faculty staff were exceptionally happy with the results.

Recommendation/testimonial

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Brain Research New Zealand

Content Strategy, Copywriting, Graphic design, Social media marketing, Video production, Web design

Background and challenges

Brain Research New Zealand – Rangahau Roro Aotearoa (BRNZ) is a Centre of Research Excellence which was newly created in 2014. BRNZ involved 4 Universities – Otago, Canterbury, Auckland and AUT along with several independent research institutes and groups and over 300 researchers.

BRNZ’s aim was to advance the treatment and prevention of diseases of the ageing brain on a global scale. BRNZ therefore required a heavy-duty marketing approach to kick it off.

I was the sole-charge marketing person for the group and as such had to be a one-woman band. I also had a zero dollar marketing budget with virtually no access to funding for day-to-day marketing, with the exception of the creation of the annual report and some key research events.

As such I needed to produce valuable marketing assets out of nothing but my own capabilities. I also needed to foster an atmosphere of branding consistency and cooperation between historically competitive institutions, which were now brought together under the same banner for the first time.

I therefore put together a marketing strategy and then executed all of it highly effectively.

Actions

• Management of a database of community members for targeted personalised comms around specific issues, via Hubspot and HootSuite.

• Ongoing community outreach with relevant not for profits and iwi across the country – both online and in-person events.

• Event planning, management and promotion before, during and after events.

• Produce creative, cost-effective merchandise, branding materials and visual branding (myself and via an outsourced agency).

• Social media management and content management best practice training for researchers.

• Measuring and optimising the website using Google Analytics and making cost-effective recommendations for optimising content for SEO and conversion.

• Content, design and digital marketing using free and open-source tools where possible to keep costs low.

• Media liaison with Fairfax, NZ Herald and other journalists and getting researchers stories out into the media.

• Relationship building with dispersed teams and individuals in order to capture and convey research stories to the wider world and get cooperation on key campaigns.

 

Results

 

Community engagement, social media and online conversion optimisation

As a part of my role with Brain Research New Zealand – Rangahau Roro Aotearoa, my role was to engage directly with Not for Profits and Maori Iwi within Auckland and Dunedin and to arrange marae visits for researchers and clinicians.
BRNZ had a stall at Te Matatini 2016 was an outstanding success. I managed to giveaway over 3,000 kete bags with the koromiko seeds and also to giveaway approximately 1,500 notepads. The community outreach and #GrowWithBRNZ campaign online and offline resulted in a 30% increase in Twitter followers along with substantial user generated content.
The campaign also meant a spike in engagement, with over 3,000 views of the website during the week of the event. The conversion goal of 100 responses to our online survey was exceeded and we received over 800 responses to the online survey into knowledge of neurological conditions.
Community events (which I organised and ran) contributed to the group receiving millions in philanthropic funding towards improving health outcomes.

Media interviews 

Read the full selection of stories on Linked In

 

Web design, graphic design, content marketing

I designed a new website for Brain Research New Zealand which was based on usability assessments, paper and online surveys, and research into the existing CMS and what pages were most visited on the site. Also the UX process involved integrating the most important user functionality such as access to new research studies looking for participants, as well as contact information for key clinicians. I designed the site with this and design best practice principles in mind.

Internal communications/ research collaboration

I wrote, designed and produced a pamphlet for researchers to promote themselves internally to other researchers within BRNZ and externally to researchers around the world.

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Annual Report writing, design and production management

This was the first annual report ever produced for Brain Research New Zealand.Therefore it needed to be visually impressive, on-brand and also contain stories of substance and scientific rigour which would impress the target audience – the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) the governing body which provides funding to BRNZ on a 4 yearly basis.

I coordinated the content, interviewed researchers, coordinated the photography and managed the production of the design and printing via a design agency.

Click image to browse the document

Video production and post production

For the opening of several new dementia research clinics across the country, I managed photo shoots and produced a series of videos which featured interviews, speeches and cut aways to stock footage.  See examples below

eDM template design and distribution

Australian patients association

Australian Patients Association

Content Strategy, Copywriting, Social media marketing

A NFP located in Melbourne enlisted my help to set up their social media, train them on social media and promote a range of awareness campaigns aimed at boosting knowledge of patients about their options for treatment, clinical care and promoting fairer billing by health professionals.  

  • Social media set up and training
  • Digital marketing strategy – BTL
  • Website copy creation/conversion optimisation
  • Online campaign planning and execution for several concurrent campaigns

Vaccinate Australia

This campaign by the Australian Patients Association was the result of medical experts growing increasingly concerned that Australians were becoming complacent or apathetic about the need to vaccinate in order to wipe out preventable diseases. In 2010 the APA enlisted my help to create a digital and social media campaign around ‘Vaccinate Australia’.

This involved the creation of an advocacy plan and a manifesto of action for political awareness. It also involved the creation of copy for several targeted email campaigns.

I created a comprehensive digital marketing strategy for the Australian Patients Association which involved a targeted ad campaign on Facebook, a blogger outreach campaign and a revamp of their existing website to include campaign-relevant information about vaccination. This involved creating online resources which countered the arguments of anti-vaccination campaigners. The marketing strategy also made recommendations to involve people of influence in the media and to have these advocates speak out publicly about the importance of vaccination.