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Best College Commercials of All Time

Nowadays commercials need to be creative to actually stand out in a world where people are exposed to thousands of promotional and advertising materials every day. Colleges commercials have been traditionally dull but even the educational field is getting more competitive and needs to be up-to-date with market trends. Unlike past college commercials which were a boring showcase of the facilities, these days they have to be able to make themselves stand out.

In order to achieve that, commercials need to be appealing, relevant, catchy and memorable. Factors such as music, script, filming style, and originality take a major role in order to achieve good results.

Most university and college commercials are aired during televised college sports events because they have been given either free or very inexpensive advertising slot time during that broadcast. A few years ago, it was rare to find attractive and worth watching college commercials mainly for two reasons:

  1. if the broadcast air time has little, or no apparent value (cheap or free), then it’s unlikely that the institution will spend a lot of effort on the commercial to be aired
  2. Universities in the past have been very conservative and unwilling to take any risks, that is why most colleges commercials are very similar and don’t deviate from the norm

However, since the rise of the internet, educational institutions have more space and affordable free platforms to reach large audiences to broadcast ads and promotional videos which has m. Filming is also more affordable and bot factors have helped create attractive and genuine commercials. Below I have listed the best college commercials for your inspiration or just simply if you are curious. The list below is based on the number of views on Youtube when searching for university commercials.

Best college commercials

Below we have listed a collection of video commercial which are the best ones we have seen, if you have any suggestion or believe we are missing some, please leave your answers in the comment box below.

1. Texas Christian University

Texas Christian University, a private Christian university based in Fort Worth, was first established in 1873 and possesses a large campus with 272 acres. TCU is affiliated by the Disciples of Christ and formed by 8 colleges and schools. They teach a classical liberal arts curriculum.

I have highlighted this video particularly because its awkwardness makes it memorable. With a tone of cheap info-commercial, it manages to generate attention with a slightly humorous touch. It is a great example of how to make the most of tight budgets and a clear statement of how being bold could help you stand out in the market. Well planned video and a creative crew could save you lots of money. Budgets are really important on video productions and commercials but creative could make up for the lack of funds.

2. Southern Illinois University

Founded in 1869, Southern Illinois University is a public university that enrols students from every state in the USA beside it resides student from more than 100 countries. The video showcases the institution facilities where the library seems to take a special place as well as emphasises the traditional educational values. Also, it makes an effort to appear multicultural and attempts to reach to millennials with a message like Experience SIU (millennials are well known for favouring experiences over materialistic possessions).

In general, the video is beautifully filmed and edited, it has a sober colour tone and powerful music which makes it look like a motivational video. All in all, it accomplishes a lot: showing facilities, display SIU values, highlighting the benefits of further education and inspiring viewers to actions.

3. Columbia University New York

University has managed to create a commercial that is appealing to millennials and also is captivating and memorable. The powerful voice over grabs viewers’ attention from the beginning and its messages are inspiring. By combining these two aspects with a fast and exciting filming style, the results are attractive, powerful and interesting.

If you are looking to create a commercial that is engaging, you don’t need to put together amazing pieces of catchy content. To achieve such results, it is enough to just make three or four aspects (such as powerful and uplifting music, strong message) of the video appealing.

Columbia University does not need an introduction, it is a world-class institution where many leaders and achievers have studied. Therefore, the video rather focuses on the uniqueness of its facilities located in New York.

4. University of Michigan

Most college commercials don’t really need to be a Hollywood production, at the end of the day, it is a commercial, it has to have actions, clips, music, narration, and an attractive filming and a compelling message. This video contains all these elements and is not especially original but the music is powerful and seamlessly fits the tone of the video, the filming style is perfect, appealing without being too cliche and the imagery catches viewers’ attention from the beginning. This video has also been carefully planned from a marketing point of view, the video title – Come to Michigan – is clearly simple and straightforward call to action that actually works. It displays some of the qualities that make an event video effective:

  1. Attention driven
  2. Catchy
  3. Powerful
  4. Perfectly unveiling the action
  5. Inspiration
  6. Uplifting
  7. Original

5. Western Sydney University

Western Sydney University is an Australian multi-campus university that was founded in 1989. This video is about a former sudanés child soldier who arrived at the age of 14 in Australia as a refugee and taught himself English and managed to earn a law degree from Western Sydney University.

This video is powerful, it’s emotive and it’s inspiring – not your normal university broadcast commercial fare. This video is intended to be an example of a human epic journey that we can overcome the hardest obstacles to ultimately succeed.

This message is ultimately a statement of a self-made man with the help of university fairy tale story of human career and financial progression and it is a clear strong message for a college that wants to improve students’ lives by teaching.

6. University of Alabama – Touching lives

The University of Alabama (Alabama or UA) is a public university established at the beginning of the 19th Century which makes it one of the oldest and largest organizations of higher education. It offers programs in 13 academic fields leading to bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees.

Sophisticated, short and concise, this video represents a perfect example of how to create a catchy yet conservative and attractive production. It is short but delivers a clear message that makes the University of Alabama stand out. Colleges’ goal is to get students the best roles in the companies, and in this production, the university’s focus is on showing both successful students and what kind of results they get in their careers by featuring corporate workers. It is the best college commercial I have ever seen.

7. Montana State University

MSU is the largest university in the State of Montana. A public land-grant institution that is located in Bozeman and founded in 1893. University business is education, therefore, students’ success stories always provide great inspiration or commercials. Montana State College tells the story of a successful filmmaker and how the colleges played a crucial part in his success.

This video particularly stands out because it’s told and filmed by an actual filmmaker. Therefore there is a lot of footage to create a compelling message and a creative and attractive narrative. The b-roll footage accompanying the narrator’s story is impressive. By Showing inspiring aspects and achievements by alumni, MSC moves viewers and creates a promotional and inspirational commercial. The better the story (both visually and orally) the more impact your promotion will have.

Video marketing for colleges

Video marketing is one of the most powerful marketing tools at the moment with a reported increase in internet video of 7 percent each year for the last few years. And thanks to the fact that digital platforms offer a free channel to distribute video and social media has allowed reaching thousands for free or at a low cost, video demand has increased and companies including educational institutions have joined the trends.

Many argue that educational institutions have become overly promotional but the truth of the matter is that times are changing and in my experience, services and organizations that fail to adapt to the times disappear. At millennial studios, we are very aware of how relevant videos can be for an institution. We are experts at creating engaging commercials that showcase your college values and make it stand out. Please get in touch here for more information.

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