Our penchant for Variety-like headlines got inspired by the latest publishing news.

Which is that coloring books for adults have reached the 15 million mark in sales last year (from one million 12 months earlier).

Why the rebirth?  Psychologists position it as a form of mindfulness, even a block to distraction.  [Coloring inside the lines does, after all, take a lot of concentration.]

Others talk about its inherent creativity, pointing to completed pages posted on Facebook and Pinterest.

And a third group cites all things nostalgic, satisfying a yen for childhood stuff.

[Of course, there are detractors.  One calls it the sign of an infantilized culture.]

Regardless, this not-so-new trend has many pluses for us communicators and marketers, especially its work application.   It’s clear that our world today lives in the eye (and, yes, the “I”).  After all, most audiences prefer to receive visual communications, whether an infographic, a video, or a great series of photographs.  So adopting the ready-to-color book seems to be the next best thing to a business-focused graphic novel.

Some top-of-mind ideas:

  • Why not, for instance, promote family-friendly products/services through a generation-spanning coloring book? 
  • Or hold an internal contest (with a company-sponsored book) awarding prizes for children of employees?  
  • Even educate new hires about the business using a series of illustrated, black- and-white outlined pages? 

It’s what we call down-to-earth doodling, for profit.