Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs

Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs


The Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs is a state organization that maintains, curates and promotes Iowa’s cultural history and future. In October 2016, the organization was in need of a concept for its 2017 marketing year. They asked Happy Medium to produce the concept and create a video to be ready for their annual gala, just eight weeks later.

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During the discovery process, the client mentioned that promotion is difficult in Iowa because of the state’s reputation for notorious modesty. How do you brag about a state that hates to brag? Using this question as a springboard, Happy Medium was inspired to create the concept around that idea. Thus, #NotToBrag was born. Slyly poking fun at Iowa’s famous reluctance to boast, we developed a hashtag that could be used in a variety of ways and lead both the Department of Cultural Affairs and its social media fans into crowing about the state, guilt-free.

“The concept Happy Medium pitched was fun and flexible. It gave us a versatile framework for our campaign, which allowed us — and inspired us — to wrap fresh branding around all sorts of programs and events.” – Michael Morain, Communications Manager, Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs

With a concept in place, it was time to produce the video. After creating the script, the client was invaluable in finding little known but amazing places, people and attractions across the state to use as locations. 500 miles and a few weeks later, the video was produced in time for the annual gala.


Not To Brag - Case Study Example


The video was launched on Facebook the same night as the gala and quickly began garnering shares and views. Within a month, the video had been viewed more than 300,000 times, shared 5,000 times and had garnered more than 300 comments. The concept itself has provided countless amounts of posts across all social media channels for both the client and its fans.