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Brand Spot for United States Coast Guard Academy Deemed ‘Best in Show’

When overseeing a 30-second brand spot for client the United States Coast Guard Academy to air on ESPN, Paskill, Stapleton & Lord Creative Director Bob Oxman knew the end product would be extraordinary.

Reconstructing the USCGA brand as a first-class military institution has been a PS&L focus and all component client work advances that strategic thinking. Bob’s belief that the brand spot attained creative excellence has been confirmed: judges of the 2018 Educational Advertising Awards, sponsored by Higher Education Marketing Report, have recognized the spot with a “Best of Show” designation.

With compelling views of the New London, Connecticut residential campus of cadets in training from reveille to taps, the award-winning spot champions key strategic USCGA messaging with conviction.

According to Oxman, the spot, broadcasted during the 2017 Secretaries Cup against the Merchant Marine Academy, was all shot by drone, including the tracking scenes that appear to be shot by dolly. Production began with a basic storyboard and script, 12 hours of ground shooting, and intensive scouting that included elevation reconnaissance for a precise understanding of how and where the sun would be shining. “We stood in the dark and watched for the sun to come up over Hamilton Hall, knowing we had mere minutes to get it right, and we did.”

The editing of the video was a collaborative effort with PS&L partner agency JPL, which has a licensed drone operator on staff.

Oxman also is proud of the efficiency of the spot, which was delivered to the client in 10 business days. “All the language was derivative from research and branding language,” Bob notes. “There is a pyramid of stuff behind why the spot is so good.”

The 33rd annual Educational Advertising Awards received over 2,250 entries from over 1,000 higher education institutions around the world; only 15 institutions were recognized as “Best of Show” winners.

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Cathy Donovan,

A higher education professional with more than a decade serving in various communications roles at a Big 10 university. At PS&L, Cathy is busy implementing a marketing plan to promote the company’s visibility and various offerings, from training workshops to assessment services to our annual conference, through trade shows, email marketing, and digital strategy. Cathy also manages psandl.com, social media efforts, and agency publications. She can be reached at cdonovan@psandl.com.