IOWA STEM

STEM, Homegrown in Iowa

CHALLENGE

Getting the Word Out

Research showed a lack of awareness of and interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) awareness in Iowa. STEM knowledge is vital to the state’s prosperity, so, in 2013, the Iowa Governor’s STEM Advisory Council tasked Strategic America with raising Iowans’ awareness of STEM especially among K-12 students, educators and business leaders.

STRATEGY

Audience Focus

Strategic America developed a multi-faceted public awareness campaign designed to tell the story of Iowa STEM to all audiences, encouraging their support and engagement in nearly 400 school districts across the state.

Influencer Involvement and Events

Breakthrough creative featured Pinterest founder and Des Moines native Ben Silberman, Iowa students/future scientists and Iowa companies offering STEM careers. We also coordinated events designed to engage and inspire—including STEM Day at the Iowa State Fair and the STEM statewide summit.

Marketing a Message Effectively

To increase campaign visibility, SA employed media relations for earned news and op-ed placements and negotiated more than $2 million of donated outdoor advertising and airtime for PSAs.

RESULTS

State-wide Success

When our partnership began, approximately 1/4th of Iowans were aware of STEM. In Strategic America’s first year working with STEM, we organically grew all STEM social accounts by an average of 20 percent, with a notable 40 percent increase on Instagram. To date, overall STEM awareness among Iowans grew to 70 percent.

Global Recognition

At national and international levels, Iowa’s STEM program has been recognized as a model for increasing STEM awareness across a broad population. Iowa Governor’s STEM Advisory Council Executive Director Jeff Weld, Ph.D., was tapped by the White House and National Institute of Health to bring Iowa’s best practices to all states and develop a federal STEM Strategic Plan, which is now in effect.

STEM PSAs

STEM CASE STUDY

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