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Customized Marketing Resources

Printed Materials

Print remains an intimate, impactful way to communicate with a wide variety of our audiences. It should create a favorable, long-lasting impression, generating interest and support for the College. Common examples such as magazines, viewbooks, annual reports, catalogs, and brochures offer a rich, tactile experience that typically enjoys a long shelf life. Printed material that is intended for an external audience must be created by and/or approved by Marketing.

Please contact Marketing to create any original designs needed to promote your program or service. Provide your content to us via a Word document. Note: We may tweak the content to ensure the greatest readership. When submitting photographs to be included in design work, please do not place them into a Word document before sending them. Original images sent as an attachment will allow us to produce materials of the highest quality.

Printed Materials: DIY

While marketing is a resource for most publications, some materials for internal audiences can be created by faculty, staff, or students. However, to provide a consistent visual image that represents the College brand, it is important that each publication appear as a member of a family, sharing common graphic elements. A list of best practices to guide you are listed below.

Best Practices

  • Tell an important story.
    The message matters. While reputation, recruitment, and fundraising are sound reasons for choosing print, make sure your message and its intended outcome is worth the cost.
  • Power up your headlines.
    This key element can be the difference between your audience engaging with your message or simply moving on. The best headlines are short, focused, bold, and compelling enough to make a reader want more.
  • Use quality imagery.
    Photography can be a key storytelling tool that creates emotional reactions to connect readers with your message. Whenever possible, professional photographers should be employed to create original images. If this is not an option, take photographs with the highest resolution setting on your camera. Marketing owns a professional camera and can take a photograph for you if needed. We offer a collection of campus, student, and program photography, including high- and low-resolution photographs. Contact Marketing for access.
  • Use cohesive graphical elements.
    Colors, typography, photography, graphic elements and voice all combine to create a strong, unique image. Use the College-approved colors and fonts, only making exceptions if necessary. Make sure graphical elements and colors are used consistently throughout.
  • Utilize white space.
    Negative space can create strong focus on important elements, improve overall readability, and give your reader a chance to breathe between sections.
  • Create multiple entry points.
    Large portions of today’s readers are skimmers who might only focus attention on headlines, pull quotes, sidebars, and photo captions. Using a few visual elements to draw attention will increase your chance of getting them into your content.

Things To Avoid

  • Cluttered design.
    Cramming too many words, images, and other elements onto a print publication is not only unattractive, but also confusing to the reader. Do not use more than three fonts in a piece.
  • Low-quality photography.
    Using low resolution, poorly composed, or uninteresting images presents an inadequate representation of your message. Photos should be at least 300 dpi and reflect strong composition, lighting, and visual interest.
  • Unclear call-to-action.
    Clearly communicating the desired action of your audience will produce better results and maximize your investment.

Mailing Lists

For print materials promoting the College and/or specific programs, mailing lists are generated through the Marketing Department. They might be generic (Residential Customer) or name-specific. Mailing lists may be purchased using a set of criteria determined in collaboration with the Marketing Director or could be generated through our internal credit or noncredit databases. The quantity of names for each mailer will impact whether pieces may be mailed with bulk rates (>250) and may determine whether or not automated processes might be utilized. In some instances, requestors may need to generate and place labels.

Image Standards

Images are an important part of design and the right visuals can take your materials from ordinary to outstanding. While it takes time and resources to find appropriate, high-quality photos to support your content, the results speak for themselves.

  • Keep in mind, the use of non-professional photographs raises both brand quality and legal issues, such as photos subject to permission and copyright. For these reasons, outside of rare circumstances, only photos taken or approved by our department are to be used in any and all print, web, or external materials. Images downloaded from the Internet are off-limits.
  • The Marketing Department holds 1-2 photo shoots each academic year to capture images of Tri-County students. You can access these photos through flickr.
  • If you are taking your own photos, note that photos used in print applications need to be at least 8”x10” and 300 dpi resolution. For photos to be included on the website, a 72 dpi is needed.
  • The Marketing Department does have a subscription to a royalty free database for a variety of images and settings not covered in annual photo shoots.

Microsoft Word and Publisher

In theory, Microsoft provides some tools that can be used by non-designers. Tasks such as inserting images, creating columns and changing fonts and colors can be accomplished. In reality, though, Word and Publisher do not allow you the exceptional control, accuracy and adaptability that professional page layout software provides.

A common misconception is that these products will enable you to make your own edits quickly and easily. The fact is, though, even if the marketing team designs templates in these programs, any change in word-count or resized photos in future issues can render the template useless or at the very least create enormous headaches for the person tasked with trying to make the design look acceptable. Inserting, resizing and rotating images can yield unpredictable results. It’s also likely that photos will not be proportionately scaled or resized simply due to the software’s lack of control when importing images. Also, MS Word converts images automatically to RGB, which is not used for print. The end result is your brochure will look less than professional and not have the quality that we desire in anything that has the Tri-County name. Bottom line: it will cost the College more in lost time and productivity than to have one of our expert designers produce the publication in a design-specific program.


Presentations are a vital part of the academic and administrative functions of everyday life at TCTC. It is important to proudly and accurately display the TCTC brand in your presentations while at the same time offering the best on-screen experience to your audience.

The Marketing Department designs the PowerPoint presentations used by the office of Recruitment, Admissions and Orientation. They are designed to match student recruitment materials.

If you are presenting to prospective students, contact the RAO office for a set of materials, including the presentation. This ensures we are all delivering a consistent message throughout our service area.

If you need a presentation for an external audience unrelated to recruitment efforts, Marketing can create one for you using branded elements.  If Marketing is creating a presentation, please submit all content (verbiage, photos, videos, etc.) two to three weeks before the presentation date.  Power Point and Prezi presentations are available.


Presentations: DIY

Several templates have been created in PowerPoint® and are available.

If you are creating a presentation, follow the layout style shown, and create the presentation using clean, uncluttered slides.

To further help you create great slides, follow the best practices listed below:

  • Create a consistent look and feel. Using many styles for different slides can be jarring to the audience. One consistent tone makes the presentation flow much better. Use the same fonts throughout and similar graphics or photography.
  • Make it visual. With text, less is almost always more. If there are a lot of words on your slide, you’re asking your audience to split their attention between what they’re reading and what they’re hearing. Use images, charts, graphs, and videos to break up the monotony of words. Use photos that enhance meaning.
  • Go easy on the effects and transitions. Effects should enhance the presentation, not take away from it. Using too many effects in a presentation can break the flow of continuity. If you do use effects or transitions, use them subtly and consistently.
  • For video, don’t use autoplay. When you advance to the slide with the video that autoplays, sometimes it can take a moment for the machine to actually start playing it. Instead, set the video to click to play. That way you have more predictable control over the video start time, and even select a poster frame to show before starting.

Compose your slides to tell a continuous story. The most engaging presentations tell a continuous story, where the audience becomes curious about what’s coming next.


Stationery: The College has created standardized letterhead, envelopes and business cards for use by all College employees. These reference only the College’s mailing address. We do not have varying stationery products for each of our community campuses; however, business cards do indicate the primary physical location of the TCTC employee.

Letterhead and envelopes are ordered through Printing Services. Business cards are ordered through Purchasing.

A Microsft Word template of the letterhead can be downloaded here.

Service Excellence Cards: The College offers a variety of postcards and thank you notes focused on employee appreciation and recognition. These are available through Printing Services.

E-Mail Signature: In order to communicate a consistent brand image for the College, we have established professional guidelines for e-mail correspondence. A template of the Tri-County signature is available here. Copy and paste the desired signature into the signature section of outlook and update it with your contact information.

To ensure consistency, please use something similar to this format:


email signature

If you are primarily at another location, you may include the physical address.

Also to help emphasize the College vision, employees are encouraged to include the vision statement:

Passionate people, transforming lives and building strong communities, one student at a time.

  • DO NOT use personal or departmental quotes or taglines as they may be interpreted to be an official TCTC tagline.
  • DO NOT add other images, such as logos of professional organizations, accrediting bodies or other departmental marketing messages.
  • DO NOT use “wallpaper” as a background on e-mail. Again, it’s a matter of keeping a consistent look in all of our correspondence.