How to Use Student-Parent Experience Videos to Highlight a School’s Success

How to Use Student-Parent Experience Videos to Highlight a School’s Success

Part III of the School Video Deep Dive Series

In part three of our school video deep dive series, we’re going to focus on the concept of “social proof” as a way to promote your school. Specifically, we’re going to explain how to showcase various success stories by highlighting student and parent experiences in a marketing video. These videos, which we’ll refer to as “student-parent experience videos,” focus on both the experience and transformation that families can expect if they choose to invest in their student’s education through enrollment.

How these videos take shape largely depends on the values and priorities of the school. For instance, parents may choose enrollment in hopes that their children become more adjusted, successful students. In that case, your school marketing videos should emphasize transformation through education. On the other hand, if your school focuses on offering a loving and nurturing environment, then your marketing should highlight the emotional experience of the school community. Regardless of exact messaging, these school videos ultimately fulfill a family’s need to hear from other families about their experiences before they commit.

What Is a Student-Parent Experience Video?

A student-parent experience video is simple yet open-ended. In 3 minutes or less, this video should highlight what it’s like to be a student and parent at your institution using testimonies and relevant footage. This asset within your school video marketing campaign should follow the lead of the flagship general admissions video by carrying out the already-established themes and values.

The student-parent experience videos should speak to both students and parents because the opinions of both work together to create a compelling narrative. Students understand the experience of your school firsthand, while parents invest their money and time into helping their children thrive. Typically, parents like hearing from other parents about their experiences, and students likewise appreciate hearing from their peers.

There is a lot of room to get creative and tailor the student-parent experience video towards your school’s priorities. It can be helpful to take stock of inspirational success stories in your community and identify any trends or common themes. Keep in mind that this video should target the specific type of family that your school focuses their marketing efforts on, so the success stories should be relatable to that audience.

Types of Student-Parent Experience Videos

The key to successful student-parent experience videos are powerful, sometimes emotional, interviews with students and parents. Beyond that, the video can follow a few different formats. Which format you choose will depend on the kind of success stories you have in your community and whether you have leftover footage from filming your general admissions video (evergreen video assets) that you can incorporate. 

One way you can frame your student-parent experience video is to think about it through the lens of the arts, academics, or athletics. For example, if there are students that found refuge in your school’s art program or turned around their grades because of your exceptional academic offerings and excellent faculty, then the video can focus on the students’ experiences in those programs.

How many student-parent experience videos you choose to produce is entirely up to you. Some school marketing campaigns might be more effective with multiple videos that cover various stories, programs, or grade levels in-depth. On the other hand, you can choose to have one video in which you compile several testimonies into one overarching theme. Ideally, your video production company will have developed a video marketing plan with you prior to filming and helped you prepare the school for a video production.

If you have a very strong singular story you can focus on, you could make a video just about that one family. Ideally, this video would be a few minutes long and show the transformation of the family in a three-part structure (the family’s situation before, during, and after their experience at the school). This type of video is especially powerful if the family is representative of a target audience that would relate to the message.

Repurposing Student-Parent Stories for School Marketing

Once you have finished your student-parent experience video, you can maximize its value by sharing it across multiple channels. First, you should ensure that your video is properly featured on your school’s website. Then, you can distribute it through targeted Facebook advertisements, email marketing campaigns, and even at open houses.

Ready to begin creating student-parent experience videos for your school’s video marketing campaign?  Contact Monzo Media Productions today to set up a consultation about your school video marketing campaign.

How to Prepare Your School for a Video Production

How to Prepare Your School for a Video Production

Part II of the School Video Deep Dive Series

Finding a video production company to make awesome marketing assets for your school was a challenging first step, but the hard work isn’t over yet. Now that you have a great video crew and marketing partner on your side, you’ll need to begin the planning process for filming. The most important thing you can do before filming day is to prepare your school for video production.

If you’ve never had to coordinate and prepare a school institution for filming, you might not know where to start. Without proper planning and organization, you could end up disrupting your school’s daily activities and wasting valuable time. To get the most out of your experience and investment, check out the following step-by-step guide.

Scheduling Film Day for Your School

Ideally, you’ll want to schedule your film days according to your school’s calendar. Ask yourself if there are any important exams or events that will cause the campus or population to look differently on camera. Find a stretch of time where activity on campus will be “normal” or typical. When it comes to capturing interview content, students, teachers, and staff shouldn’t be preoccupied with extraordinary circumstances or too stressed and busy to participate. Otherwise, they might perform below average on camera, leaving you with unusable footage.

In addition, filming during special events will limit the crew’s ability to film certain scenes. For example, if it’s final exams week you don’t want to disturb the students, or if there is a field trip for a whole section of the school, there might be a lack of students in the hallways to film candidly. Even if you can organize all the key participants, there won’t be enough content for a video without quality B-roll footage. 

Communicate Expectations to Students and Faculty

In order to get the most out of your film day, the entire school body must understand your expectations. Announce that there will be camera crews and instruct everyone about proper behavior during filming. 

Even if your school doesn’t enforce a strict dress code, emphasize appropriate attire. As a precaution, keep an extra wardrobe on hand for those who may need to change. Replace any overt branding or offensive prints with school pride clothing.

Finally, remind everyone that not all footage will be used. You’ll have a lot of content to work with, so not everyone will make it into the first school marketing video. Preemptively addressing this expectation will spare hurt feelings.

Map Out the Day for Filming the School Video

Identify the locations and interviews you need and allot the appropriate amount of time to effectively capture each scene. While creating your schedule, remember that a common mistake is to only shoot one video at a time. You’ll end up having to schedule another film day for each video and run the risk of disrupting educational processes at your school.

Thorough planning will allow you to get a lot of footage that you can repurpose later for other marketing assets, otherwise known as “evergreen” video content. Allow ample time for shooting B roll and substantial interviews that might come in handy for other videos. Write out a schedule that everyone can follow, including interviewees. For B roll, line up all the locations before film day and verify that the film crew can capture daily activity in those settings.

One warning to be aware of is knowing which students you can and can’t film. Most likely parents signed a waiver to allow their child to be photographed/filmed for your schools marketing materials. However some parents may have opted out of that and choose to not want to have their child photographed/filmed. Please make sure that whoever is filming/editing is aware of those children that way you can avoid them when filming/editing.

Overall, be prepared yet flexible. Things can change at the last minute, whether due to the sudden unavailability of an interviewee or a change in location or scenery for the shot. Regarding the latter, the film crew might identify and advise you on a better filming opportunity for your marketing assets, and it may be in your best interest to change plans in that moment.

Prepare Interviewees for the School Video Format

It’s hard to predict how interviewees will perform on camera. To avoid discomfort and unclear messages, run pre-interviews. During these meetings, identify and address any issues and preview what to expect during on-camera interviews. Try going over the questions with interviewees ahead of time and practicing their answers, though they don’t need to answer exactly what they practice, just the idea is fine. 

Even investing only 10 minutes to go over the basics can improve the finished video product. Try to catch students in the hallway during recess or at lunch. Schedule time during free periods for teachers and staff. If there’s anyone in particular who doesn’t seem prepared or comfortable, prioritize speaking with them to improve the articulation of their ideas on camera.

Maximize Your School Film Day Potential

Without prior experience, you can effectively prepare your school for video production by following the steps outlined above. Get your school community excited about film day with proper organization, planning, and troubleshooting. With the right strategy in place, you’ll obtain not only stellar interviews promoting your school, but also evergreen video content to strengthen your marketing funnel. Monzo Media Productions can assist you throughout the school video preparation and filming process. Looking to start your video production project? Contact us today!

School Video Deep Dive: General Admissions Video

School Video Deep Dive: General Admissions Video

Part I of the School Video Deep Dive Series

We’re now in September! With classes back in session, the energy in schools is at peak excitement for the year. However, the conversation should never have to “return” to enrollment and admissions if a level of enthusiasm and interest is sustained throughout the year. This raises an important question: How are you using your school video marketing strategy to get prospective students and families aware and excited about your institution? 

In this blog series, we will take a deep dive into how a robust video marketing strategy can improve enrollment and retention. We’ll explain in detail which videos you should add to your marketing armory, and how you can maximize their value. These are the same types of videos we recommend to our own school clients.

For this first blog, we’ll be focusing on the cornerstone of this strategy, the general admissions video.

What Is a General Admissions Video?

The general admissions video is the flagship of your marketing strategy. In this video, you’ll need to showcase the core of your institution, including values and unique offerings that set it apart. You should be highlighting school culture, value proposition, and extracurriculars. Most importantly, you should encapsulate the student journey and experience that’s promised to prospective families during the admissions process.

To start, capture a combination of staff interviews, student testimonials, and action shots that showcase the essence of life at the school. Focus especially on how teachers add to that experience and reveal what makes these educators excited to work every day. 

Usually, general admissions videos should be between 90 seconds and 3 minutes long. If a video is too short, it could lack the substance that tells a compelling story. If it is too long, you might have too much “fluff” and lose the viewer’s interest. Extending beyond 3 minutes is justified, however, if you are expertly weaving together a fascinating story that keeps viewers engaged.

At the end of the day, the most important result is that a prospective family gets a gut-feeling about the school. This is the video that will determine if they want to continue learning more or not. They won’t decide to enroll their student right away, but this video will play a key role in capturing their interest so that they take further action.

The Role of the General Admissions Video in Marketing

On one hand, people think of marketing as casting a wide net and capturing as many leads as possible. On the other hand, an unorthodox way to think about good marketing is that it not only nurtures good leads but also turns away leads that aren’t the right fit. The latter can be an effective marketing framework for a school admissions process, when the end goal is not to drive revenue but to build and foster a community and culture. When creating and marketing this general admissions video, you shouldn’t be afraid to narrow in on what sets your school apart and which prospective families it serves.

For example, if the school serves students with learning differences or takes a different approach to student testing, your goal should be to market specifically to those families. Identifying which niche you serve will likely turn some families away, but it will save you marketing dollars and improve retention.

When it comes to marketing the video, make sure it’s accessible. Feature it at the top of your website’s homepage and pin it to the top of social media feeds. Direct site visitors to play the video by making it prominent enough to command attention, setting up a click-worthy thumbnail, and including a “watch video” graphic or a play button graphic. 

Expert tip: Uploading a general admissions video directly onto social media platforms instead of linking it from other sites like YouTube or Vimeo helps promote more views.

Further, use this general admissions video to engage in more targeted marketing. Send it out in your direct email marketing campaign as an introduction for prospective families and a way to nurture leads. You can also use the video for advertisements such as pay-per-click (PPC) Google ads[2]  in combination with a landing page, or Facebook ads. Finally, don’t forget to use this video at events such as open houses, which will help set the tone for the event and encourage discussion. 

Start Your School Video Marketing Campaign

Your general admissions video is a solid foundation on which to build the rest of your video marketing campaign. Other types of videos for the school, such as those that highlight sports and special extracurricular programs, should all follow the lead of your first video with tone and themes. 

If you had to only create one type of school marketing video, the general admissions video would be it. However, at Monzo Media Productions we strongly encourage clients to build a suite of videos, and therefore a marketing funnel, that will attract and nurture leads. If you’re interested in learning more about creating a great general admissions video and marketing campaign for your school, contact Monzo Media Productions today. 

How to Create Evergreen Video Assets

How to Create Evergreen Video Assets

Getting started on filming for your main marketing video is exciting, but before you dive in, you might want to consider the opportunities of what you’re about to capture. You might have thought that film day preparations ended with setting up plans for this one video, but you’d be doing yourself and your brand a disservice to not think further ahead.

As part of your overall marketing strategy, you should be integrating this video into a solid sales funnel or enrollment funnel set up for your school, nonprofit, or business. Whether you’re looking to get more leads, increase sales, improve enrollment, or promote more fundraising opportunities, creating “evergreen” video assets as in repurposing content used or not yet used will set your organization up for continued success while saving time and money on filming. 

Creating evergreen video assets is a matter of identifying what you should film and edit so that you have a bounty of usable footage for future videos. Properly build up evergreen video assets during your film day(s) by keeping the following tips in mind during your pre-production, filming, and editing processes.

Planning During Pre-Production

As you’re looking to create assets that will capture your brand identity and achieve conversions, you should be doing ample research on your film location and the people you’ll be interviewing. While you think ahead about actions, events, and wide location shots that you can capture on film to build up valuable B-roll footage, you should also compose interview questions that will elicit both general and specific comments from interviewees with future video subjects in mind. 

For example, if you are filming a marketing video for your private school, you’ll probably have a list of students and faculty to interview. You’ll of course want to get their comments on their experience at the school, but you’ll also want to ask questions targeted towards their expertise and interests. If you interview a student who is very involved in the music program, you should ask them about their experience playing in band and plan to shoot B-roll footage of the music department. You might not use this footage for the first video, but these shots can be utilized for other content.

Staying Flexible While Filming

A general rule of thumb for film day is that you should get more footage than you believe you’ll ever use. Once filming is over and you sit down to review the footage, you’ll likely realize that there are many options to work with, but for this particular subject, a majority won’t be needed for the first video you produce. That doesn’t mean your film day was a waste, but rather you can use that footage for future video content to improve your sales funnels. Maintain this mindset as you film throughout the day, and don’t be afraid to think on your feet. Stick to your plans to capture footage for your first video, but think about all the footage as reusable in the future. 

Make sure to capture enough shots of the location and the activities that take place there. As you interview people, notice whether they’ve said something really interesting that can branch off to become its own video. For instance, if a teacher mentions how they’ve integrated technology into their classroom, make sure to get footage of computers and other equipment in the school.

Editing with Potential Content in Mind

Once you sit down to edit, you’ll realize you have hours of footage for only a 2- to 3-minute video, and that’s great news. Not only will you be able to pick out the best shots for your first marketing video, but you’ll be able to shelve hours of content for future use. 

As you go through each shot, think about the content in different lights. Does this interviewee have something really unique to say? Ideally, you would have planned ahead for this scenario and captured relevant B-roll footage, but sometimes people have surprising answers to questions. If you didn’t capture enough relevant footage, you can still use their soundbite as a short video for social media, email marketing, or other lead-nurturing content.

Fill Your Content Vault with Evergreen Video Assets

When you’re going through the video production process, it’s essential to plan ahead and remain flexible. Whether you have one day to film or a whole week, you can properly plan and film with evergreen video assets in mind.

To fully utilize your filming time, you can hire experienced professionals who prioritize your marketing plan and set you up for success. Monzo Media Productions is passionate about telling your story and helping your organization achieve its goals. 

Ready to tell your story? Connect with us today to maximize your video content production and optimize your audience reach. 

Top 3 Videos You MUST Have For Your Organization

Top 3 Videos You MUST Have For Your Organization

Being in business for over five years, you often start seeing patterns of success (and patterns of failures) for your work. From there, you can learn based on experience what works and what does not work for your clients and how your new clients (and recurring clients) can benefit from those experiences.

It’s no secret that having a multi-video strategy will get you the best bang for your buck, and either though having one video is a good start, there’s very rarely a case of a one-hit-wonder in the video marketing world. But while you may have tons of ideas on what kind of videos you need to create, perhaps, you don’t have the budget or don’t have time/resources to work on all 100 of them :).

So in this blog, we will explain the top 3 videos to have, why they are successful, and how they fit into your overall marketing strategy whether you are a private school, business, or non-profit organization. We call this the Sales Video Trifecta.

  1. Branding/Value video- This is the main video on your website, the flagship of your online presence, and perhaps the most important video you can have in your arsenal. This video sets the tone and tells the story of who you are, what you do, and what makes you unique in under 3 mins. While the goal is to help nurture leads, the approach this video should take is more of an emotional connection to the audience and is not necessarily meant to collect a sale at this moment (though it will depend on the structure of the organization). Having a strong call to action at the end will help continue nurturing those leads more effectively. 
  2. Testimonial Video- Referrals and testimonials are the best way to get new qualified leads. There’s no denying that. Having a video (or in some cases, multiple videos) is a great way to showcase the consistency of your product, service, or organization and how it has improved the lives of the testimonial. Out of the 3 videos, this will most likely be the last video your audience will watch and will help increase the speed of trust for them to shoot you an email or a phone call to learn more.
  3. Promo Video- This video is often the shortest of the three videos mostly because this is the kind of video that will be used in social media ads…in fact that’s what it’s designed to be, to quickly catch the attention of your audience and get them thinking, “huh that seems interesting”, clicks on your landing page to your branding/value video and then they can check out some of the testimonials as well. Generally, you want to keep this video under 60 seconds if you can tell the story effectively in that time. 

While there are many types of videos your organization can create these are by far the most important and have the easiest ways of fitting into your marketing and sales funnel. The best part is you’ll be able to repurpose some of the footage from all three from each other or use footage that maybe didn’t make the cut from the branding video, but makes it to the testimonial video. At the end of the day, the goal is to get more phone calls, more inquiries and ultimately grow your organization.