May 1st, 2015

The Making of “The Postcard”

Author: Amy VanHaren

How do you tell Vistaprint’s story inside the confines of a TV commercial? Our creative team decided that the best way to tell consumers our story was to tell their story. How did Vistaprint demonstrate that everything you create matters? With a postcard.

We interviewed the team behind one of our most creative and engaging outreach efforts to find out what it takes to tell the Vistaprint story. Meet Maura Larose, Senior Video Production Specialist.

Maura, what is your role at Vistaprint and in this campaign?

As the senior producer in the broadcast group, my job is a combination of project management, budgeting and scoping, recommending production vendors, managing relationships, and overall organization – I essentially manage the project from start to finish.

Tell us a bit about the process.

Once we decided to base the commercial’s story on a father-son business it was time to find a director. Finding a director is a unique process. It’s kind of like dating. You each lay out your interests and if you are both on board, it’s a go. We loved Greg Gray’s work and he really liked our concept and was very open to being collaborative with our team. It was important to us that we all work together and he was great with that.

Once we decided to work with Greg, our next challenge was to choose a shoot location. Where could we shoot that remained in budget but still encompassed the look and feel of what we were going for? We were originally looking in London but, being December, we were a little hesitant about weather. Warmer places in Europe were too pricey and then we thought, why not South Africa? It might be expensive for us to travel there, but Greg and his crew were all based in South Africa and it ended up being very beneficial to have them working on their own home turf.

What is different about this project vs. others you’ve done at Vistaprint?

We wanted to go big with this one, both in scale and creativity. This project was much larger and more complex than any of our previous television spots. Our timeline was longer, we used actors instead of real customers, scouted locations in other countries, and really went for a new concept creatively, which meant working with different vendors than ever before. It was all new.

What was your favorite part of making the commercial? Or what surprised you? Or what did you learn?

We spent months prepping for a shoot that only lasted for four days, so getting to our location and seeing everything come to life was pretty amazing.

I was most impressed with the art direction on the set. It’s the art director’s job to imagine the way the set and surroundings will look. What will the bakery shop décor be like and what varieties of bread will they deliver? What kind of cake stand do they use and what color is the French macaroon? That team did an amazing job and worked incredibly fast, which is especially important to me considering my job was to keep everything on budget. When we first picked the locations we liked the bones but needed them to look and feel completely different. The art direction team was amazing.

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What did it mean to you to be a part of this and to see it come to life?

It’s been a really special and inspiring experience. I worked at an ad agency prior to Vistaprint and people always think you get to do these fun and crazy things at an agency, but not like this, not to this level.  I got to produce something for my own company, from the inside, which is unlike anything I could have done at an agency.

I was so impressed with the way Don and the company leaders entrusted us with this project and let us drive it from beginning to end. As a producer that is a rare and valuable experience. I believe the whole project went smoother because there was a lot of trust and collaboration and a wish to create something special.

I’m very proud of this work. It’s a great story and I hope the rest of the company feels as proud as we do to have it represent the Vistaprint brand.

See even more insight into the commercial with a spotlight on the Barrett and Son Bakery & Cafe, as well as interviews from the actors, director, writers, and producers:


Amy VanHaren is a Employer Brand Specialist based out of the Lexington, Massachusetts office. She is passionate about social media, brand marketing and sharing stories about #LifeinVistaprint. She likes to run along the coast in Maine where she lives and is always on the lookout for an amazing guacamole recipe.

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