Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction

Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction | #TeachWa

Creative Campaign Development | Message Development | Video production

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The Situation

Washington State schools are woefully understaffed. The Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction hired Team Soapbox to develop and implement a marketing and communications campaign to recruit individuals to become K-12 teachers. With a focus on three distinct audiences - individuals earning a teaching degree, individuals with a teaching degree but no longer using it, and individuals seeking a new career - we went to work to determine how to communicate and encourage these people to consider a career in teaching in Washington state.

The project included developing audience specific messaging, a campaign name, logo and brand identity, development and design of collateral materials, video production, social media management, recruitment fair materials, and website copy -- all of which was done in a short timeline of just five months.

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The work started with an intense period of research to fully understand what motivates individuals to choose the teaching profession. We reviewed existing campaigns (both nationally and within other states and districts) and conducted more than 30 stakeholder interviews with existing teachers, students in teacher preparation programs, college of education deans, school administrators and parents. This provided insight into the driving factors that cause people to consider a career in teaching and remain in the teaching profession. Furthermore, this research phase allowed us to identify core messages for each stakeholder group: young millennials considering a teaching degree, individuals with a teaching certificate but not currently using it, and individuals considering a career change.

We developed a tagline “For the Love of…" which allowed for personal and authentic testimonial statements from real teachers to highlight the many reasons why someone would want to move to Washington State to teach (for example: "For the Love of Exploration", "For the Love of Aha Moments", "For the Love of The Future", etc.).

We determined the campaign name ("Teach WA"), designed the logo, and created the design and copy of several print materials for job recruitment fairs (this included banners, brochures, folder, branded give-away items, and a style guide for website and print materials). We designed and coordinated the printing and delivery of all materials.

In three short weeks, we interviewed over 25 teachers and secured 13 teachers for filming. We coordinated three filming dates and locations across Washington state - Seattle, Olympia and Kennewick, WA.  In collaboration with our subcontractor, Remedy Pictures, Team Soapbox provided direction through the filming of the teachers and oversaw the editing and post-production elements of the video. What resulted was four videos that emphasized the "For the Love of" campaign brand and were used to highlight the benefits of a teaching career in Washington State at job fairs, on social media, and on the Teach WA website.  

In conjunction with the video production, we launched a social media presence for the campaign on Facebook and Instagram — strategically selecting these platforms due to a desire to target the millennial generation. Team Soapbox developed an editorial calendar for each social platform, both creating and posting content regularly on the sites to reinforce the campaign brand and share information about how individuals can pursue a teaching career.

To drive traffic to the social pages, we launched ad campaigns on both Facebook and Instagram, pushing the message that job openings for the 2017-2018 academic year are available.



Team Soapbox’s strong project management resulted in successful project completion and creation of all deliverables within the rapid five month timeline.

While it is too soon yet to determine the impact the campaign has had on recruiting new teachers into the Washington state teaching corps, we can share that the campaign generated a strong social media presence and left an impactful impression with job fair candidates at many Colleges of Education.

Specifically, two weeks of our initial three month paid advertising campaign on social media resulted in the Teach Washington Facebook page generated over 1,000 likes and Instagram has had over 10,000 post engagements. And, at the end of our engagement on this campaign, there were more than 3,000 Facebook followers.

This campaign was recognized with a PRSA Totem award in 2017, and the MARKETING Awards Bronze “M” and Big “M” in 2017.