I feel that marketing is most effective when you have a personal story to relate to or, better yet, a personal stake. It makes you understand the challenges deeper and you almost become part of the audience you’re targeting. Such was the case with ISAC’s “Shock of College” campaign.
Here we are asked to sell contracts for a pre-paid college tuition program where you lock in the cost of higher education in today’s dollars. This is our second go around with this client – they awarded us the contract in 2013 and again in 2016. But this time, we had a bigger challenge.
Not only had costs kept going up double-digits, but the program was in jeopardy of being frozen. Talk in the news and lack of a state budget made it nearly impossible to overcome the backlash in the media. Our plan was to be everywhere.
We started out with a strong campaign that put the target’s target front and center: a baby who, in my opinion, looked more like a grumpy OAP than a cherubic offspring.
Next we blasted that initial image everywhere, including out of home and an initial run of digital ads.
Then we expanded the campaign to include other images of other children — overjoyed at the positive effect of signing up for a pre-paid program. They acted as supporting cast members to the larger body of work, but all in the family (so to speak).
To top it all off, we wanted to create a piece that would clearly demonstrate (with facts) the challenges that caregivers were to be facing in the coming years. We did an informative video to tie it all together.
We exceeded our goals to attracting new contracts. We hit our goal sooner than expected. And that’s all good. But what felt best was helping people who wanted to prepare their children for college. I can relate. So we wanted to do the best for them, which included some value-add ideas like media training (where I helped with A/V support) and support documents.
When your heart is in it, it’s never work.
The client supplied the copy.
The voiceover was done by the copywriter.