Maximize your index’s potential.

IndexThe index is the first place students look because they want to see what pages they’re on. But if you wait until spring to run the index, you’re bound to have mistakes and missing information.

To alleviate final deadline stress, consider tagging names throughout the year. A smart way to do this is right before pages are submitted. It’s also an opportunity to double check that names are spelled correctly and include the right grade. Consider giving staffers a grade solely based on name and grade accuracy.

Run the index after completing the people section. This is where staffs see the most name discrepancies. Often students go by a nickname that’s not reflected on the official school portrait. Running the index early can catch these doubles and help consolidate the listing to one version of the person’s name.

Use the index as a marketing and sales tool. Post the index outside the yearbook room to show students how many times they’re already in the book. Send coupons or buying reminders to students who are in the book, but haven’t bought one yet.

Let the index guide content. Compare the index to the sales list, noting what students have bought a book but aren’t included yet. Share that info with reporters and photographers, making those buyers a priority. Similarly, note what students have already reached the max number of times in the book, and strive to select other people in photos, stories and captions.

Another layer of coverage: Indexing classes, clubs, events and sports helps students find them in the book. Considering bolding those entries in the index or creating additional lists for each category as a reader service.