Do This Now: The Best Last-Minute Marketing Tactic for Summer Programs

How & Why To Make a Selfie Video

May is your last chance for a quick promotion to fill capacities for your summer programs. If you’ve still got room for more registrations, here’s an easy, cheap, last-minute marketing idea: Create a short, selfie video like the one below.

Even if it’s not your favorite medium, there’s no denying the power of video. By 2019 experts say that video will represent more than 80% of all internet traffic; for the U.S. it will be more than 85%.1

According to Hubspot, 64% of users are more likely to buy a product online after watching a video. In addition, 92% of mobile video consumers share videos with others. “Video is no longer an ‘up-and-coming’ marketing tactic—it’s here, and it’s a powerful way to communicate your brand story, explain your value proposition, and build relationships with your customers and prospects,” says Lindsay Kolowich of Hubspot.2

3 powerful ways video persuades and connects

Because of social media, people tend to be more comfortable in front of a camera these days, but if you’re still feeling shy, consider the strong and effective call to action demonstrated in these short, selfie-style videos.

[This video from Kate McShea shows how simple you can keep it. You don’t need content overlays or props. She also has tips you can steal.]

Getting started with your selfie marketing video


Who’s the face of your organization? This is often the best person to make an appeal. Camp and class directors usually are effective speakers, teachers, and communicators. You’re used to being in front of people–crowds and individuals, young kids and teenagers, parents and donors. You believe in your program. You’ve witnessed its impact. You’ve heard parent and student testimonies. You’ve proven yourself and your product to be trustworthy and effective.

And it doesn’t hurt that you’re readily available, right?

But another option could be any effective communicator who has been personally impacted by your program. A former-camper-turned-staff-member. A well-known community partner. A school administrator. A member of a “legacy” family, whose children have benefitted from your camp for generations. Regardless, find someone who you feel comfortable asking to work quickly and informally.


What’s the distinguishing factor of your organization that sets you apart from your competitors? What’s the primary value that you want students to take away from your program, and how do you deliver that? Marketers often call this your “value proposition.”

According to Hubspot, a value proposition is not a slogan or a positioning statement. Rather, your value prop explains3:

  1. How your camp or class solves problems and/or improves situations
  2. The specific benefits customers can expect
  3. Why customers should buy from you over your competitors

How you describe these qualities forms the core message of your selfie video. But you’ll leverage your message with a timely call to action …


Give viewers a specific timeframe in which to act. Offer specials, discounts, or gear giveaways to reward those who act within the timeframe. If viewers register their child and reference the video, what can you offer them? If a customer shares your video, personally, and someone registers as a result, will you give their friend a discount? A welcome gift? A free t-shirt for their child?

You also could make a small donation for every person who registers within the timeframe specified. This could galvanize procrastinators. Perhaps you donate to your camp or class scholarship fund or to a non-profit that reflects your values.


In planning your video, think about your visual background. What would make an impact without being distracting? Here are some ideas:

  • Now that you’ve given more thought to your value proposition, can you identify an image that reflects that? Is your value prop about beauty? Faith? Hope? Service? Strength? Nature? Video yourself in front of an image that promotes your core value.
  • Video yourself in your camp or class surroundings—the natural swimming hole on your property, in your art studio, or in a colorful classroom. Note with enthusiasm that students will soon fill up the background behind you.
  • Are you still recruiting counselors? Film yourself at a university campus, and tell your viewers what you’re up to. Briefly highlight the quality of your staff before you launch into your core content.
  • If you’re shopping for supplies, video yourself in a quiet aisle at Costco or Hobby Lobby, and comment on your final prep and anticipation.
  • Finally, don’t underestimate the impact of a plain, studio background if you have one available. (Any photographer friends?)


You can create a short marketing video in an hour or less. So what do you have to lose? At best, you’ll fill holes in your enrollment. But even if you don’t enroll anyone new, you’ll have created a very shareable message for your best customers to promote to their friends. And be sure to consider ways to encourage social sharing of your video this month.

Regardless, you’ll be able to take a short break from the daily grind of camp prep to reflect on the good your program is doing in your corner of the world.

Get ahead: Don’t forget to capture video during your programs this summer. Assign this job to tech-savvy staffers, and make plans to create a video exit poll for your campers and students. You can capture their enthusiasm and use the best testimonies for future video or content marketing—especially the ones that reinforce your value proposition. (Don’t forget that parental permission is a must for using any images you collect!)

Grab your smartphone and get started!


1Gordon Tredgold: 20 Reasons Why You Should Boost Your Video Marketing Budget in 2017

2Hubspot Blog: Video Marketing Statistics

3Hubspot Blog: How to Write a Great Value Proposition [Infographic]


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About Gina Calvert

Gina Calvert is the Senior Marketing Writer for ACTIVE Network, providing marketing and business resources for active lifestyle organizations across a range of markets, including government, nonprofits, camps, schools and endurance events, for more than six years.