The advantage of promoting digital creative on platforms such as Tik Tok is that the audience is closer in age to our primary target audience of prospective students. On Tik Tok, currently 60% of users are between the ages of 16 and 24. We therefore have the freedom to create products that might resonate a younger audience without alienating alumni who could find the approach unsavory. We loved being able to let Dana Telsrow unleash his quirky humor and unique editing style for concepts like 'Iowa.Seriously," as well as "Press Start" and "It's great to be a Hawkeye (2020)."
Our digital creative journey began pretty much with the quarantine in mid-March. We cycled through different approaches, including concepts that tried to riff on the, "In these difficult times..." approach. We were concerned that humor would come across as profane at a time when everyone is feeling the pain of the pandemic in one way or another. We decided to commit to humor because the the COVID-conscious approach was over-used. We got the sense that people's exhaustion with the trope of exploiting suffering to sell something would result in a rejection of this approach unless it was executed with extreme care and self-awareness. By using humor in our concepts, we hoped that at minimum, people would be entertained, and at best, we'd achieve the coveted "memorable brand impression."
We still have a primary concept with a sincere, no-humor approach that will be broadcast during the abbreviated season, "Where great stories begin." Check out a selection of our creative below. Huge props to Matt Jansen, Dana Telsrow, and Kirk Murray for editing. Ben Hill, as always helped with executive production. A special shout-out to current Hawkeye Virginia Muturi, who did voice work for "It's great to be a Hawkeye (2020)" and has a cameo in "Where great stories begin."
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