TAke A Break

During my internship with Power, I worked with a team of interns to create a marketing campaign for the Speed Art Museum. On this project, I served as a Client Engagement Manager, Project Manager and Marketing Strategist, overseeing a small group of designers and copywriters. The Take A Break  campaign is set to kick-off in August 2018. 


After the Speed Art Museum reopened in March 2016, it was a challenge to increase attendance among college students at the University of Louisville, despite being located on campus. 

Perceived barriers

  • A lack of awareness about current exhibits or events at the Speed
  • Confusion about ticket pricing, as college students only recently began receiving free admission to the Speed and the change was not well publicized 
  • A feeling of exclusivity or elitism due to the history and perceptions of the Speed 
  • Inconvenient hours (10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday - Sunday, closed Monday and Tuesday) compared to competitors on campus, which are often open 24 hours
  • A lack of welcoming spaces for students to relax, hang out or study


In order to best understand our client, we conducted market research into the issues facing arts institutions today, including decreased attendance in our target audience. We found that while ticket prices create a barrier for attendance, we also found that opportunities for social interaction, reasonable price, and perceived entertainment value were critical in attracting university students.

We also created a survey to gauge perceptions of and experiences at the Speed, distributing it via social media through collaboration with the University. 

With an 85% response rate, the survey results provided insight into overall perception of the Speed, a SWOT analysis and target audience demographics, including key communication channels for students at the University of Louisville. 

However, these results also changed the nature of our perceived barriers: where market research lead us to believe that ticket pricing was our biggest barrier to attendance, 75% of respondents who have attended the Speed knew about the pricing changes. Instead, respondents cited a lack of time for visiting the museum and complications with visiting, referencing hours of operation, parking and location.

Therefore, our research indicated our biggest opportunities were:

  • To create awareness of exhibits and events at the Speed
  • To frame the Speed as a campus destination, incentivizing students to spend their limited amount of time in a place that can fill many needs (socializing, studying, etc.)
  • To form positive perceptions of the Speed in new and current students
  • To reduce complications in visiting the Speed
  • To inform students who have not visited the Speed about the pricing changes


In order to bring more attention to the Speed, we created an awareness campaign targeted to University of Louisville students to inform them of the Speed’s offerings and prices so that the Speed Art Museum becomes top-of-mind for students when considering a place to visit for events, exhibits, hanging out and studying.


Designed by Sarah Thabit and copywritten by Claire Bauserman, the Take A Break campaign focuses on fulfilling a need: the need to escape and take a breather from everyday stressors that every college student experiences. 


Because 32% of our survey respondents indicated that they learned about events via flyers around campus, we created a series of three posters to be placed in on-campus social spaces, dorms, the Ekstrom Library, the Student Activity Center and popular locations in radius around campus.

Featuring pieces currently available for viewing at the Speed, these posters are visually dynamic and use the Speed's bright brand palette to catch the audience's eye. Each poster also includes a viewer in frame, allowing the audience to visualize themselves in the space. 

Taglines like "laziness that's legit" and "procrastination you can benefit from" encourage a constructive, creative break from the daily stressors of collegiate life. Each poster also includes a reminder about the new pricing change, as well as a custom vanity URL meant to track the CTR (click-through rate) as a possible metric of success.


Because one of our key opportunities is reaching incoming students, we created a series of dorm doorhangers to be placed in dorms prior to move-in in collaboration with the University of Louisville. 

Designed to be visually simple with the Speed's brand colors, the copy takes center stage with quips like "currently taking a break: the dorm's a hot mess", seeking to create a fun way for students relate with each other through campaign messaging.

They also create an immediate connection with the Speed, prompting them to associate it with the concept of embracing stressors in a casual, positive light. Once again including the vanity URL, these doorhangers are a quick, inexpensive asset that we anticipate will saturate students with campaign messaging throughout the semester due to their multifaceted appeal. 

Welcome Bags

To further the Speed's effort to create new impressions, we also created a possible welcome bag that would be distributed during Night at the Museum, a freshman Welcome Week event at the Speed sponsored by the University of Louisville. 


Welcome Bags:

– Pens

– Notepads

– Lapel pins

– Museum materials (i.e. map, film showings, etc.)

– Voucher for a free Macaroon at Wiltshire Café

Nothing gets college students more excited than free stuff. These cloth tote bags contain pens, notepads, lapel pins, museum materials and a voucher for a free macaroon at the Wiltshire Café in the Speed. These bags would not only give students products that double as marketing materials, but also incentivize them to visit the Speed to redeem their voucher. 

While the client requested that designs for these bags be more representative of the Speed's overall brand, possible campaign-specific materials include:

  • "Because I Just Can't Even Today" tote bags
  • "Break Time" lapel pins
  • A postcard advertising all of the ways a student can hang out at the Speed, including information about student pricing and the vanity URL 


Because both our client and our research indicated that students were having a difficult time finding it, we created a series of wayfinders to direct students to the Speed from the Ekstrom Library, the Student Activity Center, Cardinal Towne and the parking garage.

Paid Social Media

Survey results indicate that our audience gets the majority of their information about events on campus through social media, specifically Instagram and Facebook. Thus, we designed a paid social media campaign that reflected our audience, designed to appeal to and engage with them based on their perceptions of the Speed. 

The design behind our social content seeks to marry two concepts: the sleek modernity of the Speed and the typical American college student. We wanted to portray students claiming the Speed in their own ways to suit their needs, whether that be a quiet place for reflection, a social space for their crew or an individual creative getaway. Visually, these images focus on pops of color in contrast to negative space, designed to showcase the student experience with the Speed's branding and aesthetic in mind.

Because we wanted to focus on showing experiences, copy for these posts will be relatively minimal and generalized to concepts, rather than specific events at the Speed. In addition, each post will include a campaign specific hashtag: #BreakAtTheSpeed. 

Snapchat Geofilter

In order to fully drive our message home, we created a campaign-specific Snapchat geofilter fenced to the entire campus during the most stressful time: finals week. This geofilter would be the culmination of the campaign, encouraging students to share their finals experience with each other and the Speed. With a simple, relatable tagline and minimal branding, students scrolling through Snapchat will be able to share their own content via our messaging and further saturate the Speed's influence across campus. 

With a simple, relatable tagline and minimal branding, students scrolling through Snapchat will be able to share their own content via campaign messaging and cement the Speed's influence across campus. 

Additional tactics

During the course of creating this campaign, we wanted to present strong tactics to accomplish our goal but we also wanted to keep our plan cost-effective and within budget. Though our client was interested in these tactics, they were ultimately outside of scope. However, we believe that the Take A Break campaign can be further enhanced by including these additional tactics to push their efforts over the top. 

Organic Social Media

During the campaign, we suggest incorporating a simple, organic social media campaign into Speed’s existing social media strategy:

  • Create simple marketing to adjust to their needs, key themes should be flexibility and reuse
  • Focus on providing actionable information to students about specific events and how they can be used as breathers or “breaks”  
  • Posts should also illustrate ways that students can use the Speed as a place to eat, study, relax and “take a break”  
  • Event-based copy with a unified hashtag: #BreakAtTheSpeed  
  • Used across Facebook, Instagram and Twitter

Campaign Landing Page

We also suggest creating a centralized landing page to serve as a creative hub for campaign with brand messaging and design to collect traffic for success metrics:

  • Redirect users from vanity URL featured on marketing materials: breakatthespeed.com
  • Create a social feed to collect user-created content coming from campaign hashtag via Twitter and IG: #BreakAtTheSpeed
  • Create a randomizer of ways to relax at the Speed (ie. "grab a coffee at the Wiltshire", "visit our Wonderland Collection", "catch 'Vertigo' at the cinema tonight at 8", etc.)
  • Gives students a place to connect and see how others are taking a break


The Take A Break campaign was designed to launch on August 20, 2017 and run throughout the fall semester, ending on December 12, 2017. Each asset is designed to launch in separate phases to maximize visibility and saturate campus with campaign messaging. 

Key dates for rotation of posters and reapplication of wayfinders include: 

  • First Day of School: August 20, 2017
  • Midterms: October 2 - October 6, 2017
  • Finals: December 6 - December 12, 2017


Our allocated budget for this project was $45,000, covering both resources and materials. After calculating the sum of our labor and materials costs, we came in $65 under budget at $44,935.

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