A Blueprint to Branding Your Institution
“Brands aren’t created, they are nurtured”
A decade ago, only a handful of universities adopted a strategic approach towards brand building. Now, as the marketplace for academic skill, and reputation undergoes transition it has become imperative for Universities to focus on branding. Universities recognize the need of building gratitude for what makes them unique. Some colleges are identified as “great” brands, most aren’t. Eventually it’s the byproduct of adopting a strategic approach toward brand building.
A Logo, color scheme, punch line can invoke strong brand recall. For institutions in higher ed, “brand” takes its unique guarantee to the students and their families, the faculty and the encompassing community. It isn’t the mission declaration, curriculum, slogan or an athletic program, simple things such as the institution’s name, background, reputation and environment is imprinted in the audience’s psyche. Brands are built and they grow in line with how an establishment connects, conveys and resonates with the target audiences.
The practical objective for any marketing campaign is to create a seamless “look or feel”, with an integrated visible identity for a devoted community of stakeholders and patrons. Branding helps to distinguish an establishment from its competition by leveraging technology infrastructure.
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A solid brand stands out in a densely packed marketplace. It is as important to teachers and administrators as it is to private sector marketers. Student buy-in is essential with an educational community’s success, and can be assessed both at the classroom level and through annual enrollment numbers.
Recognizing the fundamental role of cohesive branding many institutions have begun implementing more overt aesthetic personality initiatives. However, for some schools, these promotions amount to a bit more than a set of dictates, which departments and programs often take up haphazardly, resulting in scattershot representation–including materials which may, sometimes, even violate campus copyright contracts.
Open Usage of Materials
It’s an unfortunate fact that a lot of leading colleges do not provide quick access to institutionally approved branding materials. Even if they do, often what’s offered is portions to bit more than a tiny cache of logos and advisements on fonts or color palettes. While these may be beneficial to programs assembling letterhead or event flyers, there’s a much larger chance of unified branding that higher ed institutions are missing.
Inside our multi-mediated, digital advertising period, marketing and outreach materials are completely saturated with aesthetic imagery, including photos and videos. Without a centralized, institution-wide repository of resources, many departments and programs are still left to fend for themselves.
The typical educational media demand workflow hardly suits the creative realities of the academic’s environment-thus motivating users to circumvent visible identity guidelines. This signifies not only sunk commitment for the individuals creating materials from nothing but also a fatal vulnerable website link in a campus’s branding work. Without the ability for review and quality control, the result of any school’s so-called “unified” personality is greatly reduced.
The answer, of course, is a restored investment in campus-wide technology infrastructure. Even though many institutions invest closely in their mass media resources, selecting expensive professional photographers and videographers or licensing high-end design services, they choose to operate without the solutions and programs that give them the best return on the investments.
Providing an easily and universally available, centralized, one-stop searchable repository of digital marketing strengthens an institution’s branding effort while also keeping its administrators and staff on an easy hand.
Moreover, the quality-controlled visible consistency provided by such facilities will finally be what separates the whole wheat from the chaff as branding, whether initiated by current students or influenced by Admissions offices, becomes even more essential to institutional success in the Digital Age. With a growth in for-profit and online degree programs, as well as an extremely intense market for traditional higher educational establishments, a coherent and unified brand storyline is the main element to slice through the noise of your competition.
Here’s how Unifyed can help
Unifyed Mobile Campus equips institutions with a customizable, simple to-execute mobile solution designed only for higher education.
Unifyed’s mobile solution comes with a single sign-on providing clients the ease of access—while additionally empowering next-level features like push notifications, registration, and custom communications. Unifyed Mobile empowers a whole mobile strategy with boundless possibilities for customization, outreach, and messaging.
Balaji Thiruvengadam is the Chief Technology Officer at Unifyed where he currently oversees and manages Unifyed’s product roadmap. As a strategic thinker and domain expert, Balaji Thiruvengadam leverages his expertise in product architecture and business operations to drive business growth.