STEWART COHEN PICTURES
Gatorade awarded us a project to create a library of assets geared towards enticing high school coaches to buy into the Gatorade Program. The idea was to find a school where we could work with all their teams whether in season or out of season, boys and girls, to create positive coaching moments using athletic intensity.
I quickly learned that school districts either are either designated as a “Pepsi district” or not — and since Gatorade is a Pepsi product, that immediately eliminated many schools. It was also fall... a great time to shoot high school sports, but what we learned is that it is not a great time to ask anything from already spread thin athletic staffs. Our Gatorade rep was very helpful in making introductions, but we had to take it from there. Did you know that high schools have up to 30 coaches, try getting buy in’s from all of them was a challenge. I now know a lot about high school coaches and I think they are all saints.
We learned that we needed to work with a school not favored to go to the football playoffs in hopes they would be more available and open to accomadating us. After a lot of research, we found an amicable school that still needed a little convincing. We suggested that we cover one of their last football games, since we needed a real game in the mix anyway, it was to get them to love us. We covered it in style capturing some incredible very real editorial-style moments of the team in the field house, on the bus and during a game with three still camera teams and one live action rig. We made them feel important and as luck would have it, they won and advanced to the playoffs. Great for them, but that threw a wrench in our plans. In order to solidify our bond with them, we quickly edited a “pump you up” gatorade spot that we distributed to the school and students to get the school spirit up. It worked. We were in.
We got our additional three days at the school and on the field, every team and player participated to the extent that we had to shut it down and send the kids home every night. Then there the following morning there were varsity track athletes on the track when we arrived waiting to be a part of it before the coaches arrived. It even helped raise some grades I heard as the school wouldn’t let failing students take part. It was so much fun to empower these kids with all the positive attention we were giving them, it became a school confidence builder.
The agency and client were thrilled with the powerful content we captured. They had the stills they requested, but were even more excited about the impactful live-action piece we provided that would directly speak to other high-school coaches. It was a win-win for everyone.