Westmont Impact’s innovative video wins a prestigious award from an organization serving higher education.
The Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) has honored Westmont with a Circle of Excellence Award for its video, “Join the Movement.” CASE, which serves more than 3,400 educational institutions and non-profits in 68 countries, gives the annual award to programs that “epitomize the profession’s best practices, raise standards and contribute to a growing body of knowledge about advancement.”
The video, one of 53 entries in the Video Fundraising Features category, helped the college launch its Westmont Impact website. The site connects young alumni to the college and raises funds for the Bright Hope for Tomorrow campaign, which has raised nearly $82 million to fund construction of new facilities.
Reed Sheard, vice president for college advancement and chief information officer, says that the video, which features comedic stick figures, was well planned. He says on average, viewers will only watch an online video for 15 seconds.
“But research shows that people will watch humorous videos longer,” Sheard says. “So we designed the video to be funny, while quickly explaining the rationale behind getting involved with the campaign.”
A small study of alumni showed that although most gave regularly to a ministry, only a few donated to the college. “We had to use the two-minute video to make the case that the college is an important ministry for the kingdom of God and is vital for preparing men and women to serve in the world,” Sheard says.
Alumnus Ryan Zoradi ’08 created a rough script, hired a video producer in Portland, Ore., and launched the website, which raised more than $60,000 in the first three months. The message of joining the Westmont Impact movement by donating just 92 cents a day ($28 a month) for three years got a total of $1,000 was well received. In fact, 62 percent of viewers watched the video in its entirety. “Ryan brought the perspective of young alumni and provided the energy and focus to make this a success,” Sheard says.
The team that launched Westmont Impact, designed the site and put together all the information also included Rob Wagner ’98 and Phil Walton ’05. To watch the video and learn more about Westmont Impact, go to the website, www.westmontimpact.org