14 June 2017
Kiwi innovation shines in the Expo Hall
New Zealand was among the 300 international education exhibitors in NAFSA’s Expo Hall. Kaylee Butters, ENZ’s Director – Student Engagement, shares her insights into the New Zealand education brand and how it compares to the global competition.
To expand US perceptions of New Zealand beyond tourism and adventure, New Zealand’s presence at NAFSA showcased Kiwi innovation and creativity, with the campaign line New Ideas Grow Better Here.
Thirteen New Zealand institutions, including all eight universities, featured on the New Zealand pavilion. Each chose a creative or innovative student project to highlight, ranging from a fully recyclable electric car to New Zealand’s first virtual reality movie. The projects were shown on the pavilion and printed in ENZ’s NAFSA guide book which was handed out to all conference delegates.
Kaylee noticed that innovation was a key word for a number of countries.
“India, Ireland, Portugal, Europe, Malaysia and Germany all included taglines about innovation on their booths – but their storytelling wasn’t as compelling as our own.
“By using real student stories, we were able to communicate ‘innovation’ in a more authentic way and really bring the messaging to life – we showed how students in New Zealand ‘Think New’.”
Kaylee said touring the NAFSA Expo Hall was a great opportunity to consider New Zealand’s education offering.
“Visiting other booths gave us a sense of competitor country education branding and messaging, which is important for understanding how we can uniquely position the New Zealand education story.
“It’s difficult not to sound biased but the New Zealand pavilion had the most brand personality, and stood out above the other country booths in terms of impact, thanks to our strong and unified presence.
“A number of conference delegates said New Zealand set the bar high!”
Other country taglines at NAFSA were:
Spain: “Education, Our Art”
Israel: “Jumpstart your Future”
Germany: “Land of Ideas”
Poland: “Study and be successful”
Russia: “Learn from everyone, copy nobody”
Ireland: “The warmest of welcomes”
Canada: “A world of possibilities”