Say the word "brand" and many people tend to think "logo." After all, that's literally what a brand is, right?
Actually, there's a lot more to a brand than a logo, even in higher education. While our visual identity is the consistent set of images that helps people identify us as CU-Boulder, it's what they think and feel when they recognize our institution that strikes at the heart of our brand.
In other words, our brand is the sum of how CU-Boulder is perceived by the people who recognize us.
The good news? Our research indicates we are widely recognized as "CU" or "CU-Boulder" (one of the reasons we continue to feature a refreshed version of the the interlocking CU logo as part of our visual identity).
The not-so-good news? How we are perceived varies widely among our audiences. In order to influence these perceptions, we have to communicate more effectively.
The idea is simple: If we consistently show people who we are, what we do, and why our work matters to them, their awareness of our value will increase and their perception of CU-Boulder will become more consistent and positive over time.
This will help us generate greater interest in CU-Boulder among potential students, faculty/staff, alumni/donors, news/media, government/business, and other stakeholders who can help us advance our institution and positively impact the communities we serve.
Our brand position is the basis of our brand because it's the foundation of how we want our stakeholders to perceive CU-Boulder. It comes from the transformative initiatives outlined in our visionary Flagship 2030 strategic plan, developed in collaboration with communities and stakeholders throughout the state, as well as from the research and analysis of the University of Colorado system-wide branding initiative:
We are the University of Colorado Boulder, redefining learning and discovery in a global context and setting new standards in education, research, scholarship, and creative work that will advance the economy, culture, and health of Colorado and the nation.
Want to learn more? See the redefining page on our brand website, or visit the online events calendar to sign up for an upcoming brand brown bag workshop, where we will practice applying our visual identity and brand position, core messages, and brand voice attributes to CU-Boulder communications.