Distilling values. Changing perceptions.
Our initial brand discovery sessions with the school highlighted a need to take the identity back to first principles. Rather like a much renewed, yet ancient building, everyone knew it was built on old foundations but nobody could quite remember how it was originally used or what it used to look like. We had a lot of heritage and a whole heap of haziness.
What the school was clear on was their vision for the future. Their own commissioned research had uncovered a great deal of affection among current parents, but a certain resistance from a section of prospective parents around perceived weaknesses. The number one negative perception was a sense of both the fabric and feeling of the school being a touch old fashioned. And this is how the new brand identity needed to re-position the school to address those perceptions. We had some great, positive brand attributes to work with too – a genuine, heart-felt sense of community, an extraordinary musical tradition, a strong Christian ethos and an energetic, young Head Master at the helm.
We began by asking some really simple questions about the brand identity. What did the flower symbol in the logo mean? Could they translate the Latin text for us? Did the shape of the crest have significance? We then discovered, for example, that the Latin motto didn’t really quite make sense – the very heart of the school’s brand was projecting a slightly muddled message.
We also audited all the existing branded literature and materials and found the brand identity was failing from a practical view point too. The sheer complexity and fine detail in the logo for instance was wholly inappropriate for most applications.