Who.

ALBERT WHITMAN & COMPANY

Albert Whitman & Company has been publishing award-winning children’s books since 1919. Often known for The Boxcar Children Mysteries, Albert Whitman’s picture books, novels, nonfiction, and special interest titles delight children and teens of all backgrounds.

What.

– Brand Strategy
– Visual Identity
– Print Design
– Web Design
– Web Development
– Digital Marketing

IRRELEVANCE

The Boxcar Children series of books, first published in 1942, is beloved by generations of readers. But with the 75th anniversary of the series rapidly approaching, Albert Whitman & Company realized many readers were unaware that new stories continue to be published. The publisher was determined to reinvigorate the franchise, drive more sales, and open the door to film and merchandising opportunities, introducing a new generation of readers to a new generation of Boxcar Children stories.

IT’S MORE THAN A MYSTERY

The Boxcar Children novels are full of mystery and adventure, but as we dug deeper we found themes of relationships, empathy, and redemption — topics just as relevant today as ever. “It’s More Than a Mystery” is designed to hint at those deeper themes, allowing us to reinforce the value this series brings to those who encourage young readers: educators, librarians, parents, and homeschoolers.

BRAND STRATEGY

The tagline “It’s more than just a mystery” highlights the fact that The Boxcar Children books, while full of fun and adventure, have more to offer.

“It’s more than just a mystery.”

boxcar children big
boxcar children silhouettes

VISUAL IDENTITY

It was vital to create a contemporary visual identity that appealed to educators, librarians, parents, and homeschoolers to encourage them to introduce books to a new generation of readers.

Boxcar children work books
boxcar children boxcar logo

STRIKING A BALANCE

Merging a 1920s hand-painted look and a sans serif font modernized their look without alienating the existing nostalgic fan base.

EMPOWERING EDUCATORS

Educational teaching guides, utilizing the new visual identity, unpack the deeper themes and values shared by all Boxcar Children books.

boxcar children teacher's guide
boxcar children lesson

THE OUTCOME

Using “It’s More Than a Mystery” as a foundation, we were able to design a new visual identity and build supporting collateral that repositioned the series in an appealing, relevant way just in time for the 75th anniversary. Our work also served as a springboard for launching a new series of books — which sold out before the holidays and led to a 40% increase in overall sales as well as streaming and television opportunities.