ParentLife: Behind the Scenes by Courtney Baker

The March 2011 issue of ParentLife is starting to make its way into the churches this month and the ParentLife team couldn’t be more excited about the new design! Today, we are thrilled for our marketing strategist, Courtney Baker, to give you a behind the scenes look into the ad campaign promoting our new design. It’s a lot of fun seeing our marketing team in action! Hope you enjoy!

Hi! I’m so excited to let you in on all that went into creating the new ParentLife campaign. Here’s a behind the scenes view from our creative team.

ParentLife is an excellent magazine and resource for parents. In an effort to lift up the new design and features, we created a marketing campaign centered around parenting tips. You know, things like “To find the veggies, check under the mashed potatoes.”

One thing all parents can relate to is drive time. You’ve got to get Susie to soccer practice, Sam to karate, and get everyone home in time for a hot meal. OK, sometimes mealtime is in the car too. This reality inspired our ad featuring “Parenting Tip #25: Sometimes the easiest way to clean up the car is to play ‘count the french fries.’ And count on ParentLife magazine for practical parenting advice from a biblical worldview.”

This is the finished ad.  ParentLife2 AD.jpg

To create this scene, we needed a few real cute kids, a real-life mom, a real parents’ van, and real yummy day-old french fries. I had to pick up several orders of fries the night before the shoot because we were starting super early in the morning. (Yes, my car smelled for days. Only for you, Pam Goodwin!)

Check out these scenes from our photo shoot.


Can you tell who is taking a photo? That’s me in blue, holding a reflector. The other people helping are parents, siblings, and friends of the real cute kids who volunteered for the shoot.

Note: No Mini-Van was harmed in the production of this ad.


Our talented photographer looking for just the right angle.


Our real cute kids being — well . . . cute! Yes, we did resort to bribing them with day-old french fries before the shoot was finished.


Our talented designer/art director, Pam, reviews the shots as they are taken. 

We hope you will pick up a copy of the new ParentLife and let us know how you like it. If your church doesn’t order ParentLife, ask your church administrator to consider providing it as an outreach tool.

I confess, we stole this post (with Courtney’s permission) from the Kids Ministry 101 blog! Stop by there and leave a comment on the post and you just might win your own subscription for a year! And … if you want to help us spread the word about the new design, click here to see how you can help!

Audience Participation! — Redesign Feedback

April10PLCover.jpgBig news!! The ParentLife team is working diligently on redesiging our magazine for the March 2011 issue … and in order to the best we can, we need your help! We want to be sure our magazine is meeting the needs of our readers … so we want to hear from you! 

How can you help? By grabbing your most recent issue of ParentLife (needs to be a 2010 issue) and taking a few minutes to answer the following five questions. (If you don’t have a recent issue of ParentLife, e-mail me at and I’ll send a pdf of January 2010 your way.)

  1. What do you see of the design of the cover and interior of the magazine that needs to be updated to fit current magazine trends and appeal to parents?
  2. What types of content would you like to see in ParentLife features?
  3. Are there any departments you think are not effective/helpful? Are there any departments you think are worthy of adding on a monthly basis?
  4. How could we “redesign” our “A Life of Worship” department (p. 47) and our Growth Spurts section (pp. 7-17) to make them more helpful for parents?
  5. How could ParentLife better integrate the spiritual into its content?

Respond by leaving us a comment or by e-mailing your thoughts to Can’t wait to hear from you!