Branded Short Films
Always is a branded short film created for American Homestay Network. Learn how you can enrich your brand narrative using branded short films. Take a look at our case study.
The script was commissioned in the summer of 2017 by David Bycroft, Founding Director of Homestay International, based in Australia. The film was produced in November on location around the San Francisco Bay area with the cooperation of a real international student and her host family.
What kind of video did American Homestay Network want?
David and I had the good fortune of meeting and working together, quite by chance, at NAFSA 2017 in Los Angeles. I was producing and directing a #YouAreWelcomeHere video for NAFSA, and upon my urging, David was kind enough to step in front of the camera and contribute to the piece. A couple months later, David reached out to discuss how we might reach American Homestay Network’s target audiences using the #YouAreWelcomeHere campaign in an authentic and meaningful way. Once I understood the concerns of AHN’s target audiences and considered them alongside the emotional potential of Jessica Sandberg’s #YouAreWelcomeHere campaign, our script was quickly written and approved.
What purpose does this video serve?
The purpose of AHN’s branded short film is to address the concerns of all stakeholders in the International Education space, whether they are students coming to study in the US, potential host families, the agents who recruit host families and place international students, or the colleges and universities across the US who might like to partner with AHN. Telling a story which mirrors the AHN host and student experience -and celebrating the emotional value of the homestay experience- proved to be a moving combination. At the end of the day, what better purpose than to form and emotional bond between American Homestay Network and their target audiences.
Why would you want a branded short film?
Good stories well told have the power to move us, emotionally. Buying is an emotional action. So, how you feel about a brand has an enormous bearing on your decision to do business with that brand. An important question to ask is, How does anyone feel about your brand? Or better yet, How do you want people to feel about your brand? The best reason to consider a branded short film is because you can shape, improve or enrich the emotional response to your brand.
What kind of story can you tell? Hint: the most powerful story you can tell is based in your truth.
- What do you believe in?
- What do people already know and say about you? What do they believe?
- What story can you tell that is authentic for both you and your audience?
- Which story let’s your audience appreciate the positive effect your products or services can have on them? What problem do you help them solve?
- And how can that story communicate the emotional impact of your brand?
Our job is to help you answer these questions.
Your brand has its own narrative. And for many brands, for better or worse, this narrative is still fluid, changeable. This brand narrative is not only what people think and say about you, it’s greater part flows unspoken in the hearts and minds of your audience -it’s how your brand makes them feel.
Take a look at what owners and stakeholders in international education are saying about Always. Contact us to learn how you can benefit from a Branded Short Film.
What people are saying…
“So sweet and very moving.”
~Jessica Sandberg, Leader of #YouAreWelcomeHere
~Basil Jackson, Social Media Marketer, IDP Education Ltd
“This is a feel-good snapshot of one part of the international student experience we don’t hear enough about – home-stay accommodation.”
~Sara Custer, Special Projects Editor, Times Higher Education
“An exceptional and powerful 3 minutes that more than captured everything we were looking for.”
~David Bycroft, Founding Director, Australian and American Homestay Networks
“Darrin, this kind of video [Always] is exactly what we need in international education in these uncertain times. The video’s [Its] message reinforces why we do what we do in international education, learning from each other’s culture in the most real way possible: living, eating, speaking, sharing what and who we are. Great work!”
~Marty Bennett, Contributing Author, U.S. News Global Education
“As a former homestay student, this video resonates with me. Families that welcome students with open arms, open minds, and open hearts can help shape the way students view a culture. It reminds us that experiences outside the campus are just as valuable, and can be even more impactful in both the short and long term.”
~Kelly M. Holland, Institutional Relations Manager, Global Experiences
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