National Geographic and Mazda kicked off a first-of-its-kind competition series to search for the next National Geographic photographer. This competition will challenge the ingenuity and creativity of National Geographic’s fans and community of visual storytellers to capture stories of inspiration and human potential.
Mazda launches this competition as part of its Power of Potential platform, which honors individuals making a difference, realizing their potential and ultimately inspiring others. Over the course of four weeks, the two brands are inviting aspiring photographers to submit their work in consideration for a contest rooted in storytelling.
“National Geographic is an organization rich with powerful storytellers, and for over 130 years we’ve connected audiences to worlds and cultures they’d otherwise never see,” said John Campbell, SVP of partnerships for National Geographic Partners. “With Mazda’s help, we’re empowering the next generation of visual storytellers to hone their craft.”
The series begins with a contest shared through the National Geographic Your Shot Instagram account. The contest invites emerging photographers to tell their most unique, uplifting visual stories that make them ‘Feel Alive.’ From these submissions, National Geographic and Mazda will select three storytellers to compete in a series of challenges, where they’ll be sent on expeditions to capture stories leveraging Mazda’s brand values of challenger spirit, ingenuity, and passion for uplifting others. The photographers will be mentored by National Geographic photographer, David Guttenfelder, and Mazda Brand experts to refine their craft.
“Mazda has a unique approach to developing vehicles akin to a photographer’s devotion to capture a moment that tells a profoundly inspirational story,” said Dino Bernacchi, chief marketing officer for Mazda North American Operations. “Our designers and engineers are more like artisans, who seek mastery of their skills. They diligently transfer their passion, energy and knowledge into each project to create a vehicle that evokes a feeling.”
The winner will be announced in the first half of 2020, joining the most elite storytellers in the world. They will receive their first editorial assignment with National Geographic, where their original work will be published on digital platforms.
The competition will have cross-platform promotion with unrivaled reach across National Geographic’s social and digital properties, including digital video and social components, spotlighting the photographers competing in the contest. The partnership will reach more than 225 million U.S. fans and followers of National Geographic’s social and digital social properties. With more than 3.5 billion total content views, this promotion will shine a spotlight on the competing photographers and promote Mazda through the number one brand for social engagements. The assignment will culminate with a 44-minute special on the National Geographic television network.