Are You Telling Engaging Alumni Stories?
TLDR (Too long didn’t read): Watch this awesome alumni profile video we made to highlight the founders of Verge Aero, a drone light show company that was founded by graduates of the engineering program at Rowan University. Then contact us to see how we can help your team make videos like this. But first, read on to learn why we think these videos are so important for higher ed marketers.
When we were asked to produce a profile story about Verge Aero, a drone light show company that flies synchronized swarms of hundreds of drones to create a type of digital fireworks display in the sky, we knew it was going to be a fun shoot.
The founders are young alumni and our client was eager to show off what they had built. And who could blame them, here were three graduates who had built a business in an infant industry and found themselves running drone light shows for top tier clients no less than the President Elect of the United States.
Our task was to tell the story of these three founders and how their education at Rowan University helped to set them on their way to creating this company. We embedded a small crew with the Verge Aero team on a day when they were doing a test run to fly more drones on their network than they had ever flown before.
With only a director, camera operator, sound engineer and drone pilot, we were able to capture shots from both the ground and the air and show a variety of perspectives. Having a dedicated sound engineer on our crew ended up being crucial for this project. The finished video features a number of casual conversations between the participants that help to give personality to the Verge Aero team and a bit of insight into their relationship. This wouldn’t have been possible had we not made audio capture a priority. Additionally, the wild sound, such as the footsteps, opening of cases and other atmospheric audio, helped to give a sense of place and create another layer of immersion in the story for the viewer. Check out our behind the scenes photo gallery here.
Alumni Success is Your Success
Higher Education marketers need to be highlighting these stories. The success of your alumni is your success and you should be happy to celebrate that. The glow of your graduates shines back onto your institution and adds to its prestige but it doesn’t stop there.
Your alumni serve as proof points for your programs. They are the living embodiment of the education that your institution provides and that can be used for promotion across multiple avenues. Here are a few use case scenarios for a video like this, for these examples we’ll use the video we’re highlighting today, but these could apply to any alumni profile.
Prospective Students: This video could be emailed to every prospective student that has expressed an interest in engineering to show them one of the many avenues that are open to them with an education from your institution. It might go something like,
Hi [insert name],
Thanks for your interest in our engineering program, I wanted to share this short video about some of our recent graduates. They started their own company producing light shows where they fly hundreds of drones in a synchronized swarm. It highlights just one of the many places where a degree from our institution can take you.
Development and Fundraising: Another option would be to use this story as part of a donor package. This could be especially impactful if the alumnus featured in the video had benefited from scholarships, which we’ve also done in the past.
Open Houses: A third option would be to use the video at open houses or informational events as an attraction to your booth or information table.
But You Say You’re Already Promoting Alumni Stories in Written Content
So if you’re currently promoting alumni stories through written content, I’ve got good news and bad news. Bad news first. Your audience wants to watch video instead of read, 68% of consumers prefer watching videos to learn about new products or services, rather than reading blogs, articles etc… Additionally, Viewers retain 95% of a message when they watch it in a video compared to 10% when reading it in text. That doesn’t mean written communications don’t have value, but it’s largely SEO based. The good news is that if you already have written content, it’s easier to convert that content to video than it is to start from scratch. You already have your research and baseline content completed, now you just need to film it.
How Can Narrative Media Help Me Produce Alumni Videos
So here’s where our team comes in. We’re experts in content creation. We’ve produced hundreds of videos for our clients and just about all of them are so happy with the work that they become repeat clients.
We’re here to be your video production partner, to integrate with your team and develop video content that creates an emotional connection with your audience and leaves an impact.
If it sounds like we could be a good partner for your team, contact us using the button below. We’d be happy to have a low stakes, no pressure conversation to give you an idea of how we’d approach your unique project.
Every institution has hundreds of stories to tell and yours is no different, but your most compelling stories deserve to be created in a medium that your audience will pay attention to and interact with. Your most compelling stories should be told in video.
Photos Courtesy of Verge Aero and Rowan University/Kevin Monko