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Online Learning is Better than Textbooks

Remember the days of lugging around a textbook? Welp, it has finally evolved.

About the Project

Toppling an antiquated industry requires bold action. When releasing its new product – a digital learning platform for biology students – JoVE knew it needed to lean into its brand values. Viewing themselves as the punk rock competitor focused on delivering value to its customers, JoVE stepped out on a limb.

Targeting the early adopter biology professor audience, we positioned textbooks as something Darwin would expect to be extinct. It’s a simple conversation about leveraging technology to deliver better learning outcomes at a fraction of the cost. This idea became their marketing campaign and spread into their web, print and event initiatives.



What We Did

Creative Workshop

Video Production



Our unengaged email segment had the highest open and click rates of our unengaged campaigns to date. Conclusion? We intrigued a lot of people by dressing a guy up in a textbook costume!

Nathan Director of Sales

Strategic Planning

A punk rock brand with a cheaper & better product.

Our textbook evolution conversation began at a lunch meeting. True. On a napkin. False. After learning about JOVE’s new product and its mission, we realized that a punchy explainer video would both showcase their new product and serve as an opportunity to showcase their brand.

Sure, they could have played it safe. But their message was bold: ditch the status quo, heavy books, inefficient model for a cheaper alternative that helps students retain material faster.

Creative Concepts

Bringing the evolution of the textbook to life

Together we brainstormed roughly 20 concepts and narrowed it down to the top 5. We sketched up storyboards and drafted scripts. We had a textbook riff on the evolution of mankind. Another idea had us seeing students from the Roman Empire through the modern day student all struggling with the textbook. Narrowing it down to one idea was a challenge.

At the end of the creative workshop, only one idea remained: an old man in a textbook costume. A curmudgeon in a textbook custom complaining about how nobody really likes him anymore and upset that a better alternative finally exists.


Leveraging video to fuel a product launch campaign.

We crafted our textbook outfit, cast our actor, found our location, locked down our production plan and lights, camera, action it was time to film. Lesson learned: It’s always a fun day of filming when you have a man in a textbook costume.

Sure, we provided the main video to support the campaign. That’s obvious. But JOVE was able to use looping .gifs, screenshots, tag lines to fuel their digital presence and launch their new product with oomph.