The first phase of Unitec and Special Group's year-long 'Change Starts Here' kicked off back in January. And stage three of the 'reality advertising' campaign has gone live on TV3 and FOUR this week, with Special Group's Tony Bradbourne saying the feedback has been phenomenal so far.
Youtube VideoPerhaps slightly unusually, there's plenty of truth in this advertising. And that's the point, really. As Bradbourne says, a lot of tertiary advertising still seems to take the 'come down here and you'll have a great time' approach. But showing the ups and downs of three students—school leaver Alex Riley at Unitec Architecture school, Netane Takau in his final year of a nursing degree, and adult student Vicky Te Puni in her final year Bachelor of Design and Visual Arts in photography—was a big risk.
It also added some drama. Takau featured on Campbell Live before a must-pass test to go through to the next stage of his qualification. If he failed, he was out, so, as Bradbourne says, they really were putting all their eggs in one basket with this campaign. Thankfully, it was a happy ending.
Reputation is everything for tertiary institutions. And Unitec has a reputation for its focus on trades. That's an important part of its offering, but there's plenty more and, as well as trying to influence school leavers, he says one of the goals of the campaign is to change the opinion of parents.
"It seems to be working, because it looks like a great place to come," he says. "Our research shows the campaign is tracking incredibly well and dramatically changing people's perspective."
A documentary made by Film Construction on the journey of the three students is planned to run next year on one of the MediaWorks channels.