For a number of years, Nokia had been developing training manuals like any other company: dry instructional material in a three ring binder with uninspiring design. There was nothing that made the sales reps say ‘I’m excited about this phone’ or ‘I totally get what this phone is about and who it’s for’, or more importantly ‘I want to sell this phone!’ For the launch of the Nokia 5310 and 5610, two devices in Nokia’s music category, we wanted to ensure the sales reps would say all those things.
Seeing as it was an internal piece, we thought why not create a training ‘magazine’ rather than a manual, and use Rolling Stone, the quintessential music magazine, as our muse. Everything about the training magazine felt like a magazine; the front cover, the binding, the tonality of the copy, ads were embedded in the magazine that spoke to additional Nokia products and services, as well as a lose-leaf card that allowed reps to enter a contest. Subsequent training magazines were requested and produced, including NQ, Selle, and Unwired.