Exploring the Brandscape, Part 1: What the competition is saying

Posted on Monday, November 2nd, 2009 by Debbie Schallock under Competition, Integrated Marketing, Research. Tags: , , ,
Brandscape: According to Kilmer & Kilmer, brandscape is the definition of the competitive and consumer environment in which your brand must perform and compete.

When marketing and communication strategies are managed and executed successfully, they become best practices for others to follow. Equally, if mismanaged, these examples of marketing and communication can demonstrate what to avoid. With the goal of examining what others are doing – both well and poorly – the IMSC committee has been gathering a repertoire of what to do and what not to do.

This fall, the Competitive Subcommittee engaged in a review of ten cross-admit (universities that admit the same caliber of students as UNCG) schools, looking specifically at university web sites to capture online marketing and communication efforts. The audit included a review of items like mission and vision statements, taglines, graphic standard manuals, key messages, mottos, etc.

Once we complete a comprehensive review of these items, brand consistency will be rated on a 4-point scale. We will then share overall observations gleaned from the main homepage – the primary portal to most university web sites – and identify best practices and pitfalls to consider.

One facet of our audit that was particularly interesting was that committee members engaged in our competitors’ admissions process as if they were prospective students or parents of prospective students. The goal was to solicit information that we can then use to compare for brand consistency. In other words, are these institutions following through on the promises communicated in their marketing materials?

We are learning a great deal about integrated marketing and strategic communication, and the more we learn, the closer we will come to making UNCG a university whose best standards can serve as a model to others just beginning to engage in the process.

In the meantime, visit this blog again for posts from my fellow subcommittee co-chairs Dr. Tim Johnston and director of admissions Lise Keller, who will describe more about the research audit and message audit, respectively. I also look forward to sharing the results from our message audit in a future post.

By Steve Roberson, Ph.D.

Steve Roberson, Ph.D., is dean of Undergraduate Studies

When marketing and communication strategies are managed and executed successfully, they become best practices for others to follow. Equally, if mismanaged, these examples of marketing and communication can demonstrate what to avoid. With the goal of examining what others are doing – both well and poorly – the IMSC committee has been gathering a repertoire of what to do and what not to do.

READ MORE

This fall, the Competitive Subcommittee [link to previous post about committee members] engaged in a review of ten cross-admit (universities that admit the same caliber of students as UNCG) schools, looking specifically at university web sites to capture online marketing and communication efforts. The audit included a review of items like mission and vision statements, taglines, graphic standard manuals, key messages, mottos, etc.

Once we complete a comprehensive review of these items, brand consistency will be rated on a 4-point scale. We will then share overall observations gleaned from the main homepage – the primary portal to most university web sites – and identify best practices and pitfalls to consider.

One facet of our audit that was particularly interesting was the follow-up to the gathering of materials. [l1] Committee members engaged in the admissions process as if they were prospective students or parents of prospective students. The goal was to solicit information that we can then use to compare for brand consistency. In other words, are these institutions following through on the promises communicated in their marketing materials?

We are learning a great deal about integrated marketing and strategic communication, and the more we learn, the closer we will come t

Brandscape: According to Kilmer & Kilmer, , brandscape is the definition of the competitive and consumer environment in which your brand must perform and compete.

When marketing and communication strategies are managed and executed successfully, they become best practices for others to follow. Equally, if mismanaged, these examples of marketing and communication can demonstrate what to avoid. With the goal of examining what others are doing – both well and poorly – the IMSC committee has been gathering a repertoire of what to do and what not to do.

READ MORE

This fall, the Competitive Subcommittee [link to previous post about committee members] engaged in a review of ten cross-admit (universities that admit the same caliber of students as UNCG) schools, looking specifically at university web sites to capture online marketing and communication efforts. The audit included a review of items like mission and vision statements, taglines, graphic standard manuals, key messages, mottos, etc.

Once we complete a comprehensive review of these items, brand consistency will be rated on a 4-point scale. We will then share overall observations gleaned from the main homepage – the primary portal to most university web sites – and identify best practices and pitfalls to consider.

One facet of our audit that was particularly interesting was the follow-up to the gathering of materials. [l1] Committee members engaged in the admissions process as if they were prospective students or parents of prospective students. The goal was to solicit information that we can then use to compare for brand consistency. In other words, are these institutions following through on the promises communicated in their marketing materials?

We are learning a great deal about integrated marketing and strategic communication, and the more we learn, the closer we will come to making UNCG a university whose best standards can serve as a model to others just beginning to engage in the process.

In the meantime, visit this blog again for posts from my fellow subcommittee co-chairs Dr. Tim Johnston and director of admissions Lise Keller, who will describe more about the research audit and message audit, respectively.

By Steve Roberson, Ph.D.

Steve Roberson, Ph.D., is dean of Undergraduate Studies


[l1]Mike, Can you help give one more sentence about what exactly “gathering of materials” really was? Might lose the average reader not involved in the process here if they don’t know you actually gathered admissions materials  from several schools first. Is it possibly overkill? Yes but we have to remember that the reader could be anyone.