Rolling through the Campus Tour Video – and its budget: EM Strasbourg Business School

April 14th, 2011 Karine Joly 2 Comments

I’ve featured a good number of campus tour videos on this blog, but this one is a first.

Not because it’s from a Business School based in France (I don’t get pitched stories often by European institutions, but I’m interested in any good examples no matter where they come from), but because this campus tour video is entirely done on… a chair with wheels (no, it’s not a wheel chair, but could have been as the campus is 100% accessible have I been told).

Just watch this video to understand what I mean.

So, what do you think?

It’s fast-paced, innovative and let you see a lot of the campus and the city in a just 3 minutes.

The first time I watched it I thought it could work great as an ad for the chair, the real guest star in this production.

Well, it turns out this campus video tour was actually sponsored by the chair manufacturer, Steelcase, “who paid a fair amount of the production fees for the video,” according to Julien Sultan Fournier from Noir sur Blanc Production, the agency that created and produced the video for EM Strasbourg Business School.

The company provided a few free chairs for the shooting as well. The school has been a client of the company for the past 2 years, while SteelCase is a member of the school’s foundation and an active recruiter of its graduates.

Michel KalikaMichel Kalika, Dean of the EM Strasbourg Business School has been a champion of the school video and social media strategy – and a very active one as he’s also in the video playing the role of the professor in the classroom at the begining of the video (don’t you wish your deans were that engaged in marketing efforts?) He was kind enough to answer a few of my questions so we can learn a bit more about this project.

1) What were your strategic goals for this video?

This Campus Tour is targeting both young French and international students looking to study in our prestigious European Business School. The objective is to convey our school brand, a dynamic international school in an international town – Strasbourg, the capital of Europe. Strasbourg is a nice place to study; we offer large libraries, nice facilities and the Business School is downtown. The video has also a version in Chinese to target Chinese students.

2) Why did you choose to work in partnership with Steelcase for this Campus Tour video?

As a Business School, we have a strong network of companies supporting our institution [Karine’s note: in France, ties between public higher ed institutions and the private sector used to be frown upon]. We have a lot of partnerships, corporate chairs, contracts with companies, but it is the first time we associate our brand so strongly with a company’s. Two factors were decisive in our decision: working in partnership with a company in order to target students demonstrates our close ties with the corporate world. Furthermore, Steelcase is a global American company. It produces this new type of chair designed to allow students to work in groups. Last, our students were very involved in the project, so we integrated external communications, internal communications and academics through this initiative.

3) How did you promote the video?

The video was promoted by our school community manager and by NSB agency. We promoted it through our Facebook and twitter accounts. NSB promoted the film through its twitter accounts and a media relations campaign. Last, the Chinese version was shown to 25 Chinese journalists in Beijing last month, and uploaded to Youtube and Tudou (the Chinese Youtube).

4) Has the video met its original goals? Can you share some data or feedback you received after it was released?

Yes definitively, 13 061 views in one month;191 positive reactions on facebook; Some reactions and retweets on twitter and 20 articles on websites.

So, what do YOU think?

Have you heard about any other institutions passing the cost of its campus tour video to a company?

2 Responses

  1. Definitely a different and clever way to do the campus tour. I liked the music, and watching the two guys run around in a chair was kind of fun for the first minute or so.

    But to be honest, unless I had read Dean Kalika’s answer to the question about goals, I wouldn’t have really been certain what the point of the video was. The dynamic international branding he mentions definitely wasn’t obvious to me, but maybe that’s because I’m not the target audience.

    It’s comparing apples to oranges perhaps, but I much preferred the videos you’ve shared before – from St. John’s and Brock. Each of those communicated a message much more effectively.

  2. I loved this video. It was cool, fast, and dynamic. There was plenty of branding (see store moment) and plenty of shots to show student life, academic side of things, facilities, and the city. It was highly produced and very smart of them to involve the chair. Good product placement for steelcase.

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