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Clip from AIA’s 30-second ad trailer for space exploration. The video is currently playing in more than 50 cities in the United States ahead of Star Trek Into Darkness
After the end of the Space Shuttle program, AIA began to notice a troubling trend in the news media regarding space programs. There seemed to be a growing misconception that the U.S. human spaceflight program had ended. This realization was especially as high-profile space programs are known for their ability to inspire young students to pursue careers in STEM.
To help counter this misconception, AIA organized a first-ever crowdfunding campaign to place an ad trailer for space exploration in movie theaters during the premier of Star Trek Into Darkness. Crowdfunding is a form of internet fundraising in which members of the public can make financial donations to support product development efforts or advocacy campaigns they are passionate about. AIA was excited to use this innovative technique because the platform offered the public a direct mechanism to take ownership of the U.S. space program.
AIA originally intended to raise enough funds to place an ad for space exploration in four major cities – New York, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles and Chicago. The response from the public far exceeded expectations however, allowing AIA to place the ad in more than 50 cities across the country.
Through crowdfunding, AIA raised more than $52,000 from more than 1,700 donors. The crowdfund website received more than 100,000 page views, and when the ad trailer was placed online, the video received 30,000 views in just one weekend. NASA offered its support as well by tweeting the ad trailer and posting it on their Facebook account, exposing the campaign to a combined following of more than six million people. Additionally, more than 70 news outlets including local TV news stations, newspapers, blogs and trade presses covered our campaign.
It was heartening to see so many individuals offer financial support to reassure young students and the American public that our future in space is bright. Looking forward, AIA will continue to lead similar advocacy efforts to ensure our space program and its supporting industry remain second to none. To view the ad trailer, as well as find a theater playing it near you – visit www.supportexploration.com.
AIA source: daniel.hendrickson[at]aia-aerospace.org