For Fusion’s team, 2015 is a such an exciting year. Our new yearbook builder was launched in February and we have terrific releases to come: new features, more content and more fun!
Three weeks after this launch, we have had plenty of good feedback. If you haven’t had a chance to try it yet, or you have just had a quick look, this post is a fantastic insight for you to discover the new features available.
As a user of the previous versions, you will discover new ways to do usual things. As new user, you will find all the info you need to get started. I hope this helps!
Introducing our new page editor, powered by Canva.
Our new yearbook builder is the result of an exciting partnership with Canva, which is the world’s most powerful online design platform.
Why Canva? Well, the first reason is that Fusion Yearbooks and Canva’s founders are the same great couple: Melanie Perkins and Cliff Obrecht. And after 7 years in the yearbook industry, they have the knowledge needed to understand yearbook creators’ insights.
The other reason has to do with technology. The rise of smartphones and tablets has disrupted the way people are using the Internet. Month after month, major technologies of yesterday are put aside because they can’t handle Internet’s new standards. So we decided to re-design our system using the most recent technologies. To make it even better, we have implemented the Canva page creator.
We just want to be ready for what’s next. And working with Canva is by far the best choice to insure you power, reliability and security. Already used by almost 2 million users in less that 2 years, this platform is robust and scalable. So is the new Fusion Yearbooks system!
So, what’s new? Let’s check it out.
New features: more graphic resources available.
More context. In the previous version of Fusion Yearbooks, the layouts available were pretty basic. In the new version, we’ve decided to provide you with contextual layouts. They are all optimized for better readability and give you a clear idea of what your final page could look like.
Note: we’ll be adding new layouts regularly trying to reflect your school life: sports, arts, culture, group photos, profile, etc. So if you have any ideas or requirements, feel free to leave a comment and we’ll work on it!
More than a simple online design tool, our new page editor gives you access to Canva’s 1 million image library. Some images are free and some are not. To know if an image is free or not, just roll-over it and check indications:
– Free means that the element is free to use
– $1 means that you can use this element for $1
– Special cases: on some layouts you may see a $ sign. This means the layout contains 1 or more $1 images. Replace those premium photos with your own photos and you will see that the layout is entirely free.
If you want to know more about the cost of an element, just click on ‘i’ (at the bottom left of the element). You will have the detail and will locate the photos to replace with your own to make it entirely free.
More customization. Even if these layouts look pretty much “finished”, you can still arrange them as you want. You were already able to rotate, move and resize elements with the Fusion Freedom on the previous versions. From now on, you can also change the colour and play with the transparency of every single element of the page: backgrounds, images, texts, cliparts, etc.
More fonts and text effects. The number of fonts available went from 25 to 150. And this will continue to grow. The sizes are now unlimited, so you can pretty much create any typography artwork you want. You can also play with letter spacing and line spacing, or use any of the professionally designed stickers and text holders available.
More cliparts. What we used to call Fusion Features in the previous versions have been boosted too. You can use hundreds of free cliparts and graphic elements to customize your pages. Grids, frames, lines, shapes, illustrations, icons: there is a lot to choose from. All those cliparts are customizable too: you can change colours, size, transparency, etc.
Most of the previous Fusion elements, especially the ‘Kid Friendly’ ones, are not available yet, but they will be soon. We just had to redesign them so they can fit the new platform (and customization options). Stay tuned, we will release them (and new ones) on a regular basis. Here is a sneak peek of what’s to come…
This library of graphic resources has been designed to evolve with time. We have a dedicated design team who loves creating new images; if you have any particular need or suggestions, just leave a comment, your ideas are always welcome!
New features: new ways to manage your project and your content
Multi-project and multi-user management. Contrary to the previous version, you can now manage multiple projects from the same account. If you work in a big school and need to create multiple yearbooks, graduation books, you can do it from a single account: switching from one project to another is done in a click. By the way, each project keeps its own multi-user aspects, so you can involve different teams for each project and you still have the choice between 3 types of users. When you’re logged in, just go on the team tab to see what each type of user can do.
Manage quotes, invoices and follow your delivery easily. As a Head Editor, you can manage all admin details. On the new system, you can also keep track of your progress step-by-step with time-stamped notes. You can play with our quote calculator to build a pricing that fits your budget, and adapt it up to the last minute before you go to print. And from now on, you can pay online.
Managing your photos. In the past, uploading high resolution photos was a little long. Now, everything has been optimized to go faster. We’ve also added the possibility for you to upload your photos from Facebook which is pretty convenient.
Editing your contents. Simply drag and drop your photos from your uploads. Or add text by choosing a text box from the Text tab.
Managing profile pages. In the new version you still have the possibility to collect students’ profile info online. However, it’s slightly different. Discover the new workflow for profile pages in our dedicated tutorial (coming soon).
More inspiration and better support
More tips & tricks on the blog
– Client stories: you will find ideas from other schools or interviews from clients on various topics. Seeing what other people do can be of great help if you don’t know where to start.
– Content: we will share knowledge and ideas about yearbook content. Example: tips on how to write a great article, what kind of content could I have in my yearbook, etc.
– Design: discover our designers’ tips to make your pages nicer! All about colours, fonts, shapes, etc.
– Photography: how to make the most of your yearbook photos? Ideas for your photoshoots?
– Project Management: recruiting the best yearbook team, ideas for fundraising, yearbook sales, how to get organized for the project, etc.
– Updates: keep posted about the release of new features. See what’s new and how it works.
More ideas & inspiration on social networks
– Facebook / Twitter / Google+: to keep posted on special offers, contests, etc.
– Pinterest: to find more inspiration for your designs and photos.
– Instagram: to learn a little more about Fusion People!
Our new help desk is… ALIVE!
You may have noticed a new button on the right of the screen. This button allows you to ask questions while using Fusion Yearbooks. In general, we turn questions into easy-to-activate tutorials. Feel free to ask us any questions, anytime: it will help the whole community!
Let’s sum it up
Here are the things you need to remember about the new features of Fusion Yearbooks:
– Fusion Yearbooks has moved to a new technology.
It gives you more power, more graphic resources and more fun.
– Some of the resources provided by Canva are free, some are not.
Our layouts are all entirely free, and you can easily locate the cost of images by clicking on the image icons.
– More tips, tricks and inspiration are available. Check them out on our help desk, our blog and our social networks. And you are welcome to help us grow this knowledge base!
I hope this post gives you a clear vision of the new Fusion Yearbooks system. And if you have any other questions, feel free to leave a comment here. I’ll be answering you quickly.
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