“Who are we?” If you were to ask the average young adult that question about your institution, what would they say? If you’re unsure, it may be time to plan your next branding campaign.

But what is a branding campaign, and what does it look like for enrollment marketing?

Read on to learn about this topic in general. Then head to the case study page for a detailed example of how we put one together for Loma Linda University.

Branding Campaign: An Oxymoron?

I know what you’re thinking. A brand and a campaign are separate things, right?  

Usually, yes. Creating or communicating a brand, or the practice of branding, is not the same as a marketing campaign.

  • Your brand is who you are as an institution. Branding is establishing or reestablishing identity over the long term.
  • Marketing campaigns communicate what you do, the programs you offer, etc. They drive audiences toward action in the short term.

This makes the term “branding campaign” seem like an oxymoron. 

Which is it? Are we creating designs and crafting messaging platforms that communicate your core identity for the long term? Or are we executing a short-term strategy to drive audiences to a specific action?

As you’ll see when you read about our work with LLU, sometimes it makes sense to blend core identity expression (branding) with tactical strategy (campaign).

Loma Linda University: “Heroes Made Here”

This approach worked well for LLU. They were interested in both reasserting their university-wide identity as a standout faith-based health sciences institution (branding) and driving enrollment results by highlighting featured programs (campaign).

So, we designed and helped LLU execute a branding campaign in the spring and summer of 2020 around a compelling idea. The long-term identity they had sown as leaders in health, science and faith was poised to reap a new crop of “healthcare heroes.”

In the midst of a pandemic, this was their moment to express that identity in a new way, and at a strategic time. The “Heroes Made Here” branding campaign was born.

Check it out, then let me know if you’d like to discuss whether a similar strategy would make sense for your K-12 or higher ed institution.

Read Case Study


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