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Published March 04, 2019
The University of Wyoming’s “The World Needs More Cowboys” campaign video has been recognized as the best single-spot television ad among all national higher education advertising in the past year.
The video, which anchors UW’s comprehensive marketing and branding campaign launched in 2018, earned the “Best of Show” honor in the 34th annual Educational Advertising Awards competition, sponsored by Higher Education Marketing Report.
UW’s overall campaign also was recognized with a Silver Award in the “integrated marketing campaign” category of the competition, which attracted over 2,200 entries from over 1,000 colleges, universities and secondary schools from all 50 states and several foreign countries. The awards were announced last week.
Additionally, UW’s video and marketing campaign Saturday received regional “Addy” awards in the American Advertising Federation’s American Advertising Awards competition in Colorado Springs, Colo. The video was judged “Best of Show” among all entries in the competition, which is for advertising of all types, not just higher education. And UW’s overall campaign won a Gold Addy in the category of integrated, branded content campaigns.
The regional Addys are the first of a three-tier national competition. By virtue of their Gold recognitions, both the video and the overall campaign automatically advance to the next level.
The American Advertising Awards, which attract nearly 35,000 professional and student entries each year, recognize and reward the creative spirit of excellence in all advertising.
“It’s wonderful to see that our marketing campaign and its anthem video are being recognized as outstanding not only among higher education institutions, but also across all types of advertising,” UW President Laurie Nichols says. “We know ‘The World Needs More Cowboys’ has galvanized UW alumni and other supporters across the country and even internationally, while catching the attention of thousands of prospective students and many others. The external validation in professional advertising circles demonstrates the power and impact of the campaign among a variety of audiences.”
The campaign, intended to help grow the university’s enrollment and raise its national and international profile, takes the university’s boldest asset and modernizes it to reflect today’s challenges. Drawing upon Wyoming’s proud heritage, the campaign redefines what it means to be a Cowboy in this day and age, distilling it down to the inner spirit of curiosity and boldness that all who call themselves Cowboys and Cowgirls can identify with -- no matter their race or gender.
The comprehensive marketing campaign, the first at UW in at least a decade, is a result of the university’s strategic plan, “Breaking Through: 2017-2022.” The strategic plan’s objectives include effectively communicating UW’s opportunities to prospective students, regional partners and national and global markets; and instituting a centralized plan that tells UW’s story and positions the university for recognition in all of these contexts.
After seven months of the campaign, the university is in the early stages of assessing the impact of “The World Needs More Cowboys” in helping meet its enrollment and other goals, even as it plans for the second year of the campaign.