National Geographic Channel teamed up with BMW-owned Mini for an integrated brand spot that ties together its new series America’s Natural Parks, a sweepstakes to promote the show, and the car company’s new Countryman model.

The spot by studio 2C Creative uses a documentary-style approach, focusing on National Geographic Explorer Photographer Andy Mann as he sets out on a trip shooting some of the United State’s most spectacular scenery, in his Mini Countryman.

Viewers can also enter to the Countryman Adventure Sweepstakes to win a weekend photographer trip in Montana with Mann.

“The goal was to organically marry the National Geographic and Mini Countryman brands, uniting them around their target consumers’ shared passion for adventure photography in a way that inspired engagement and interaction,” according to 2C Creative.

In the 60-second spot featured above, the studio focused on telling the story of Mann practicing his craft.

“Content that intermingles and celebrates the essence of two brands is appealing to consumers because they can picture themselves right in the storyline,” said 2C Live Action and Creative Director Brian Eloe. “They may not be getting the hard sell, but they are more likely to pick up on key features and interact.”

The agency also extrapolated a tool kit from the logo development to create 10- and 20-second clips tying the sweepstakes into the promotion of America’s Natural Parks, packaging content that captured both brands for a consistent feel across marketing collateral.

“Advertising has really changed in terms of what it takes to get people engaged, and sometimes the sum of the pieces is greater than the individual parts,” Eloe said.

When filming the spot a number of shots happened simultaneously, giving it the feel of a polished cinematic documentary rather than a traditional commercial. The agency used a small crew and simple setups, incorporating vehicle-mounted stabilizing MoVi units and a mix of cameras including the main Alexa Mini and two Sony 4K mirrorless cameras; an A7 for the dash cam; and the smaller A6300 for exterior car mounts.

“It’s like a virtual ride-along,” Eloe said. “You’re spending a day in the life of one of the world’s greatest nature photographers, in his car, in his elements.


National Geographic Channel

Consulting Creative Director: Tom King

Senior Creative Director, Client Solutions: Melissa Marks

Production Manager: Leif Skillrud

National Partnerships Director, National Geographic: Danny Bellish

Mini USA

Marketing Communications & Launch Manager: Lee Nadler


Producer: Thomas Perretta


Chief Creative Officer: Chris Sloan

Live-Action/Creative Director: Brian Eloe

General Manager, Senior Director, Operations: Nikki Coloma

Editor: Pablo Coig

Editor: Jesus Martinez

Design Director: Luis Martinez

Graphics Executive Producer: Bob Cobb

Designer/Animator: Jessica Musumeci

Colorist: Dmitri Zavyazkin

Designer/Animator: Andy Fernandez

Manager, Technical Operations: Ashley Hartford

Assistant Editor: Kelly Lanman

Assistant Editor: Williams Naranjo


Line Producer: Lisa Goldsworthy

Director of Photography: Kevin Emmons

Designer: Aaron Magee

Audio Mixer: Cesar Haliwa


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