Penguin Randomhouse

Penguin Random House is a leading book publisher. At the start of this project, they had interviewed over 2,000 readers to get a better understanding of their target demographic. Readers from the survey were divided into 6 user personas and key statistics were mapped to each personality type.

The purpose of this engagement was to arrange the data in a digestible, easy to navigate research portal meant to help staff make well informed marketing, sales and publishing decisions. To do so, we included a user persona quiz for new clients to take and a web platform that would give staff access to all the latest trends and research.

Given the offline, traditional print nature of Penguin Randomhouse, we felt it was important to create a visual style that felt modern, yet traditional. We ultimately landed on a print-inspired, hand drawn art direction for its ability to juxtapose whimsical brush illustrations with sophisticated textures. We felt this would bring research to life while allowing it to feel reputable.

Art Direction
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Some starting sentiments
from stakeholders:

“The segmentation page should be easily searchable and the data visualized in a ’snippable’ way for sharing”.
“This portal reinforces our commitment to data-driven creativity and provides us with a common language to describe our readers.”
“Things were very opaque in the past, so this will help us get closer to our actual customers.”

Take the time to listen.

After interviewing stakeholders, we created 3 distinct moodboards - inspired by the print nature of the publishing space.

The first moodboards was vibrant & illustrated: incorporating bold, contrasting colour and duo tone patterns + brushy textures representative of print.

The second moodboard was sophisticated & literary: drawing on the off-white of book pages, inky stains and character illustrations.

The final moodboard was modern & minimal: Our admittedly least favourite - but the direction that would allow us to focus almost solely on presenting data with minimal distractions.the client chose a combination of moodboards #1 and #2.
Vibrant MoodboardMinimal MoodboardSophisticated Moodboard


The different personas were depicted through a series of anthropomorphic animals that symbolized each reader group. Their whimsical nature brings  the research to life by creating a central character into the story of each persona while allowing users to make quick associations.
Sweet Cheat Website Images

The End Result

The bulk of this site focused on segment pages - each built around distinct characters and colour schemes with relevant statistics and book recommendations for each. In addition, we created a “which segment am I?” quiz, resource library and a comparison tool to make the data more interactive.
Ebook page about balanceEbook Cover PagePenguin Randomhouse Quiz Results
Ebook Cover PageEbook page about balancePenguin Randomhouse Quiz
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