How The Prince’s Trust’s Recorded a 78% Completion Rate

Video Builds an Emotional Connection Demonstrating the Trust’s Impact On the Lives of 825,000 Disadvantaged Young People in the U.K.

Since 1976, The Prince’s Trust has made a difference in the lives of more than 825,000 young people in the United Kingdom, providing education, training, and work opportunities. But even Britain’s leading charity for young people, founded by HRH The Prince of Wales, needs to generate awareness to extend and keep its community of supporters engaged.

The Prince’s Trust is increasingly using video to generate awareness and build an emotional connection with its cause. “The incredible stories of our young people, and their journeys with us are unique to The Trust,” states Georgie Mew, Head of Marketing Partnerships. “Video is a rich storytelling tool and brings to life how we make a difference in their lives. It captures the emotional engagement in a way that written words don’t allow.”

A Distinct Mission

The Prince’s Trust helps disadvantaged young people between the ages of 13 and 30, many of whom are unemployed, struggling at school, or facing issues such as homelessness, mental health, or trouble with the law. The Trust’s programs give these vulnerable young people the practical and financial support needed to stabilize their lives.

Working with more than 1,200 strategic and operational partners, The Trust runs a range of programs to help young people gain the skills and confidence they need to find a job, secure a training opportunity, or even set up their own business.

Video’s Emotional Connection Sparks Conversations and Expands the Community

Video is expanding The Trust’s community by providing a tool for supporters to share and initiate conversations with family and friends about their involvement with The Trust. “Video is uniquely able to bring our work to life in an engaging and emotional way. Through video, viewers can see the difference The Prince’s Trust is making,” explains Donna White, Digital Marketing Manager.

The charity’s supporters are diverse and include volunteers who donate money or time, as well as individuals who participate in fundraising challenges, such as marathons or channel swims, or simply hold bake sales to raise money. “We have a large community of people who believe in the mission of The Trust. Each contributes in their own way,” explains Mew.

As part of its 40th anniversary celebration, The Prince’s Trust created a marketing campaign, called “Parallel Lives,” to raise awareness of The Trust’s accomplishments. The campaign integrated numerous marketing tools, including celebrity endorsements. However, Mew credits a particular video with generating the greatest awareness. The video was produced with support from The Trust’s pro bono advertising agency CHI&Partners. It dramatised the impact of The Trust on young lives by following a fictional character through two parallel paths in life. One path featured the life she achieved because of the support of The Prince’s Trust, while the other path showed what her life could have been like without The Trust’s support.

The campaign reached 24 million people across all media, and generated 390,000 online views. The long-form video had a 78% YouTube completion rate. “Over 1,600 new supporters signed up to our Prince’s Trust community," reports White. “We weren’t expecting such a direct result from a video campaign. We thought the video would play a role in brand awareness and emotional engagement. But, of all the activities we ran in 2016, the video, accompanied with strong creative, generated the greatest number of sign-ups.”

Empowering the Storytellers

One extraordinary benefit of The Trust’s video storytelling initiatives is empowering the young people whose stories are told through video. “The videos express their journey in a visual and impactful way,” says White. As it moves forward, The Trust is enabling some of the young people to create their own videos—to tell the stories of their personal journeys in their own words.

“User-generated content allows us to expand the number of videos we produce, which is the best way to stay in front of people with authentic stories that resonate,” explains White. “The content is credible and we can produce the videos quickly. We recognise there are quick wins out there by working with our young people to do more video content. We’re not restricting ourselves to ‘polished’ video edits, but instead saying, ‘Here is an opportunity.' Let’s be relevant; turn it around quickly, and see the results on the same day.”

Keeping the Focus on the Brand

As they work to reinforce and extend The Prince’s Trust brand, the marketing team is making use of the Brightcove Video Cloud’s ability to customise the player. “Brightcove enables us to put the same logos and colors on the video players that are on our website, which is really important to us in the marketing team,” says White. “Now, it is really clear people are watching Trust-branded content.”

“Our job is to keep telling authentic stories about the young people we help, and video is a great way to do that,” concludes Mew. “It is a really exciting time to be pushing out video content.”

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