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Decoding Nature

"I really enjoy the Decoding Nature episodes. Thanks for introducing the audience to all the history, people and special places of MetroParks. This program is so professionally made that it reminds me of the Ken Burns documentary series “America’s Best Idea” about our National Parks! Well done everyone! It’s obvious that lots of talented people made this happen!"

– Mary, viewer

Bringing the Dayton region closer to nature since 1963


Five Rivers MetroParks has been protecting the Dayton region's natural heritage for more than 50 years. But recently, they noticed an alarming trend: children are spending less and less time outdoors.


To increase the community’s connection and involvement with the parks, Five Rivers made a bold choice to invest in entertainment marketing. They asked us to help them create their own documentary series about the past, present, and future of the organization.  


Creating an emotional bond through entertainment 


Entertainment marketing aims to foster an emotional connection between a brand and an audience. But to build that connection, you have to hold the viewer’s attention.


Before filming each episode, we held a pre-production meeting to identify the main points each episode needed to cover. We developed a creative brief based on input from all the project stakeholders — including Five Rivers staff, local historians and naturalists, and our host.


Because of this preparation, every person who spoke on camera knew exactly what they needed to talk about, but they were able to speak naturally without a script. This gave the final episodes the intimate feel Five Rivers wanted, while preventing rambling interviews that would lose the audience’s attention.


In addition to creating seven 15-minute episodes, we also hosted off-line events, like history walks and episode screenings, to enrich the campaign by bringing people physically into the parks.


Early showings delight viewers


While the promotion is still ongoing, early reviews are positive, with one viewer comparing the series to a Ken Burns documentary about America’s national parks. 


When people have a deeper understanding of something, they care more about it — and with our thorough pre-production planning, outside research, and interactive events, we know this mini-series helped many locals get to know Five Rivers MetroParks on a deeper level.

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