Nitrogen producer CF Industries is closely tied to corn, the largest consumer of nitrogen. But the communicators at CF wondered just how much employees really knew about the crop. In-house videos produced to increase employees’ corn literacy have earned first place in the “Low-Budget Video (Under $2,500)” category of PR Daily’s Video & Visual Awards.
“We are in the business of manufacturing and distributing fertilizer, but how often do our employees see the end result of all their efforts, a crop that ultimately feeds the world?” the comms team notes. The solution envisioned was a series of videos running 2–3 minutes each, sharing (in an entertaining way) all things corn.
The first step was to create a list of questions to which the communicators themselves didn’t know the answers. Then they met with the market strategy department to get the answers to these questions. Next was the “corn tour”: Armed with a smartphone and stabilizer, the producer/director/cinematographer tapped into the knowledge of a group of employees who would lead a tour through Wisconsin farmland. They were dubbed “The Three Husketeers.”
The videos were shared initially through the employee email newsletter, with each segment building on the content of the previous episode. Four videos were distributed overall: Parts of the corn plant, field corn vs. yellow corn, nitrogen deficiency in corn and calculating yields. The videos have earned about 500 views each, two to three times more than a typical newsletter article.
Congratulations to Mary Thomas and Chris Close.