Inspiring the next generation of leaders in STEM: National 4-H Council and HughesNet
Internet provider HughesNet serves primarily un- or underserved rural and exurban households using satellite technology. To differentiate itself from competitors, the company turned to a partnership with the National 4-H Council to elevate their brand while addressing an important need: access to STEM education in underserved rural and exurban communities.
4-H is one of the largest youth development organizations in the country; its membership reaches nearly three million rural youth, making it the ideal partner to help accomplish HughesNet’s goals.
HughesNet and National 4-H Council developed a strategy to support STEM education through local, regional and national campaigns and hands-on events ranging from STEM summer camp experiences to social media competitions; career day experiences at a Hughes manufacturing plant to a future scientist video contest. As a result of the partnership, association with STEM education and 4-H has created a new identity for HughesNet beyond the usual metrics of price, download speeds and data allowances.
Since launching its 4-H partnership, Hughes has seen a 21% increase in social media followers, a more positive tone, and higher subscriber rates. 4-H mentions along with HughesNet delivered 97 percent positive responses online. Overall sentiment improved 12 percent since the 4-H campaign launched in 2014.
Inclusion of the 4-H partnership in HughesNet acquisition materials improved response rate, generating more subscribers to the service. The events HughesNet and 4-H conducted together has provided hands-on STEM content to more than 100,000 youth across the country, sparking interest in STEM by making the subject engaging and accessible to tomorrow’s leaders.