How technology can fill an education gap

Student life has changed in unimaginable ways since Covid-19, but we believe tech brands can, and should, be instrumental in reimagining the future of education – and helping younger audiences reach their fullest potential.

To be fully engaged whilst back in the classroom (and through continued periods of learning from home), opportunities for group interaction, collaboration and enriched learning experiences can provide a more rounded education and, overall, help to make up for the abandonment of 2020.


Microsoft Mesh

Tech has caught up with fiction, with the likes of Microsoft Mesh bringing groups together collaboratively into fully immersive experiences, or University of Utah enabling biology students to virtually dissect specimens. But a lasting effort by a tech custodian could help secure a footing for students’ growth, whilst also making a brand synonymous with a future generation. There is a real opportunity to create a legacy whilst increasing market share.

When it comes to building synergy between teachers, students and technology, the films we made with Skype in the Classroom demonstrate how, with the right partner, a brand can position itself as a vital education tool, whilst invigorating students with stimulating educational practices.

Skype in the Classroom

Noticing a surge of organically grown usage amongst teachers, Skype responded by building a platform dedicated to them. Offering virtual field trips, guest speakers, collaboration, games and more, this community platform had a revolutionary impact on over 200,000 teachers all around the world.

We helped extensively in bringing new, exciting education opportunities to the platform, and finding ever more interesting and inspiring ways to demonstrate its use.

From disappearing glaciers, endangered penguins and live, underwater exploration, to mystery games, an African village water crises and a call from Everest, there was always an abundance of exciting learning opportunities to offer the community. We travelled around with Skype over the course of 4 years to capture some amazing events, and craft them into mini documentary ads to be used by the internal comms and PR channels.

Here are a few of our favourites.

Mystery Skype

Mystery Skype sees two classrooms challenge each other, over a video call, to discover the whereabouts of their opponent, by asking yes & no questions. A fun popular format already well established, this was the first time it broke down the language barrier – featuring a first look at Skype Translator.

Exploring Oceans

A month long global education conference involving researchers, scientists, foundations, NGOs and professors, aimed at educating children about marine biology, the current state of the oceans and the effects of climate change.

We worked closely with the internal teams and remote global contributors to manifest multi asset campaigns – building landing pages, hunting for interesting curriculum, and filming inspiring content, we helped build awareness through Microsoft’s owned and earned channels, and drove teachers around the world to sign up in huge numbers.

Mission 31 – Cousteau calls from under the ocean

Skype Video Calling directly into his underwater marine lab Mission 31, Fabian Cousteau (Grandson of Jacque) played host to dozens of elementary schools around the world, sharing with them insights from undersea living, live footage of passing sea life and setting a climate agenda for the future.

 

Saving Cape Towns Penguins

Rifqau from SANCCOB speaks with a school in middle England live from the South African seabird sanctuary.

 

Results

Our efforts to help Skype in the Classroom brought benefit to all parties involved – students, teachers and brand alike reporting measurable growth in performance and sign-ups respectively.

Helping students connect more deeply with their education is a clear benefit to bringing technology into the classroom.

All children benefit from Skype in the Classroom. While some students like traditional teaching methods, there are a lot who struggle with that and prefer a more visual, kinaesthetic approach to learning.
Dan Mount, Egglescliff Primary, UK

And for Skype, with such news worthy stories, organic uptake consistently measured very high – often times several-hundred international publications would include the films in their coverage of the news, resulting in organic reach of several hundred millions.

Telling real stories

Building your brand through real events is far more achievable than trying to synthesise emotion via painfully contrived scripts and campaign ads. Real stories have a natural resonance with audiences – believable reactions, honest sound bites, sympathetic characters – and viewers connect more directly with content they know to be truthful.

Working with our global network of journalists in 150 territories and regions, we have incredible access to real life events, of every description, as and when they happen. Thus, finding the right story isn’t a matter of months’ long lead times, and costly iterations. Instead, it’s us working together to understand your brand, devising the right brief and engaging our network.

To find out more about using real news events to tell your brand story, get in touch