Three years after its initial launch, NZ Story is now looking to ramp up the services it offers Kiwi brands by initiating a creative collective made up of selected production companies.
NZ Story, which falls under the NZTE umbrella, has posted an ‘Invitation to Qualify’ (ITQ) on the government’s tender services website in a bid to attract interest from production companies.
This process will see NZ Story nominate a collection of eight providers, which NZ Story will then recommend to local brands in need of production services.
Since its inception, NZ Story has focused on providing local marketers looking to enter the international market with a clearly defined framework of how to best market New Zealand-made products to the international market without an over reliance on only the natural beauty of the country.
So far, NZ Story has grown quickly, adding over 7,500 businesses—ranging from small to enormous enterprises—interested in benefitting from the services on offer.
Rebecca Smith, director of NZ Story, says the aim of the latest initiative is to add to what the organisation already offers brands by giving members access to production companies that are both effective and affordable.
She says over the last three years, many marketers and company owners who have signed up to NZ Story have expressed concerns about which production companies they should be working with.
Smith says some of the principle concerns include quality and price, with many marketers of smaller brands concerned that they may be getting a bad deal.
She explains the aim of launching the creative collective is to give marketers, a pre-vetted list of production companies that produce high-quality work at an affordable rate. She did, however, stress that the creative collective should not be seen as NZ Story providing an endorsement to any of companies eventually selected.
In addition to providing a list of suitable production companies, NZ Story is also putting some skin in the game by launching an ancillary co-investment programme, which will see the organisation contribute 50 percent of the production charges (up to the value of $7,500) for 20 selected projects over the course of the next year.
“This is about assisting New Zealand businesses with their New Zealand story telling in a very tangible sense,” Smith says. “We know dialling up certain New Zealand attributes equates to better business results, the co-investment model will further enable this.”
Smith says collaboration is at the centre of the NZ Story, and that she sees the entire initiative as a conduit for local brands to reach a broader international audience.
On broader perspective, NZ Story also plays an important role in shifting international perceptions of New Zealand, which often pigeonhole the nation as a place of natural beauty and little else. The aim here is to go beyond the beauty—without necessarily shying away from it—and tell a broad spectrum of positive business stories that showcase our nation as place filled with sharp minds and innovative business ideas.
Production companies interested in joining the creative collective have until 23 August to express their interest.