As you can probably tell from my title, I am rarely impressed with holiday cards from higher education institutions. More often than not I find them to be forced, too long, boring, etc.
There are a couple video holiday cards this season that I’ve been particularly impressed with. The College of William & Mary and Wofford College produced amazing video holiday cards. Both focus on the talents of current students (Wofford actually wrote their own holiday song!) and they are very well produced.
I often think we try to do too much with video. Let one concept shine through and you’re golden. That is why I like these two examples in particular. They keep it simple. They focus on the cheer that a holiday song will bring viewers. They are the perfect length.
My alma mater and former employer, Saint Michael’s College, produced their very first video holiday card this year. And to my happy surprise, I love it.
- The music featured in the video is from the Sleepless Knights, one of the acapella groups on campus. Featuring students is important to higher education video engagement. And it saves you from violating any copyright laws.
- The theme of the holiday card is “giving back at Christmastime.” They are able to execute this theme in a way that engages the viewers and sprinkles in some good ole’ cheesy-humor. St. Mike’s is a catholic institution and the founders, the Edmundites, are known for their generosity and giving back to the community. They didn’t produce a video holiday card to be like all the other institutions out there. This theme was well thought out and relevant for the institution. Three cheers for being mission-driven AND entertaining.
- The mascot, Mike the Knight, is the star of the video. He gets the point across but keeps it light and humorous. Who doesn’t want to watch a school mascot decorate a gingerbread house?
- It is under 2 minutes. My attention never faltered.
- The video is appropriate for any audience. Viewers are treated to many notable locations on campus as Mike the Knight goes about bringing Christmas cheer to students, faculty, and staff. Alumni will enjoy seeing familiar places and prospective students get an idea of what campus looks like.
- It’s my alma mater. I’m partial.
Have you seen any holiday cards that have impressed you this year?