As part of our partnership with Dexter Southfield college preparatory school, May Street provides ongoing support for its summer camp program. One of our over-arching goals is to support recruitment. We work with camp leaders and campers alike to develop powerful brand messaging, which we deliver via a full-featured video suite.
Unique challenges persist in demonstrating the value of extra-curricular youth programs within the education sector. There is an ongoing need to maintain a perception of merit. Our service package offers a tangible sense of purpose for our client’s program.
Prior to our partnership, our client already enjoyed an established web presence as a college-preparatory school. But sometimes a strong brand identity can overshadow auxiliary service offerings. In this case, the summer camp — despite its robust array of programs — had taken a backseat to what the client had to offer during the school year.
We recognized this as being a very natural problem. Schools are, after all, driven by quantifiable results. Successful academic programming speaks for itself across an array of metrics, from student grades and performance reviews, to enrollment and retention statistics.
Summer camps face different expectations from campers and parents. Though they may include educational programming, they are not typically viewed as having a curriculum per se. A summer camp cannot invoke the same metrics as an academic institution to measure success. It might therefore struggle to demonstrate its value as more than a glorified day care.
The question is, then, how can a summer camp offer proof of its capacity to enrich the lives of its young attendees without grades or assessments?
As with so many questions of human interest, the answer is a matter of storytelling. We partnered with our client to generate interview content with personnel involved at every level of the summer camp program — from leadership, to counselors, to campers themselves.
Delving into the human factor, several key themes became apparent. Interviewees expressed that they had experienced a sense of community, diversity, and leadership. In our ongoing promotional efforts, we tap into these central themes, and present them as part of a driving narrative through our media presentation.
Meanwhile, we take an immersive approach to capturing video of the camp culture itself. Our footage bears witness to campers and counselors exploring a host of activities from athletics, to STEM learning, to the arts. These visuals bring the day-to-day itinerary to life.
These elements unite in telling the story of our client’s brand. As it turns out, many of the counselors have been campers themselves. These individuals attend the camp as children, and embark on a trajectory from community member to leadership. In documenting this unique social value, we set our client apart from other run-of-the-mill day camps.
Done right, good branding isn’t forced but emerges on its own. As we continue listening and working with our client, we discover stories that resonate with prospective camp goers and their families. Once we’ve discovered this narrative, our job is to make it as visible as possible. It’s our ongoing involvement that makes this impact possible.