Tag Archives: branding

What a Year It’s Been

Higher ed insights on our company’s one-year anniversary

We’ve learned so much.

This year we fulfilled a long-held dream after decades in higher education: We launched our own company. Now we consult with presidents and senior leaders on strategy and communication, and our work has been a joy: fulfilling, exciting, creative and launched at a critical time in higher education. Though our client base is quite broad—public and private, large research universities and small liberal arts colleges, associations and boards—these institutions share many common challenges and opportunities that are affecting higher education in 2017. Here are some of the most prominent themes and trends we have observed over the past year:

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Recovering from a PR Crisis

Image for blog on PR crisisI continue to see programs teaching leaders and organizations how to recover from a PR crisis. The demand for this advice seems to be a bottomless pit.

It’s inevitable that people and organizations eventually screw up. Your response has the power to make it OK again or dig you in way deeper. There’s a basic formula for recovery, and it’s pretty much the same in every circumstance. Continue reading

A More Sophisticated Definition of Branding

A story about the cancellation of a contract for branding work at the University of Oregon sparked my thinking about how often leaders in higher education misunderstand the concept of “branding.” Branding is not the efforts you make to market and promote yourself to students or other constituents. Nor is it the visual identity (i.e. logo) or the collateral you produce, such as a flashy video.

Here is the definition I offered in a recent presentation: “Your brand is the sum total of people’s experiences with your organization and what they believe about its value and relevance in their lives.” Continue reading