University of Minnesota
University Relations
Our Brand: How to Convey It
http://www.umn.edu/brand

Our Brand: How to Convey It.

Sticky ideas

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"I approve this message." It rings in my ears. I can't get it out of my mind. Even after the election has passed, words or images from the countless political ads still linger in my memory. And then there are the "mayhem" ads for auto insurance. No matter what is happening at the moment, those spots make me smile or even sometimes, dare I say, laugh out loud.

I don't think I am alone. Good or bad, the advertisers have amassed their tools, worked some magic, and created something that catches our attention, draws us in, and maybe even brightens our day. Our time is so limited and we don't want to waste it on messages that don't matter to us. Our audiences feel the same way. So how do we breakthrough the message clutter and create something memorable?

According to Dan and Chip Heath in their book, Made to Stick, memorable messages are simple, credible, concrete, unexpected, and emotional. They "stick" in the minds of audiences and help inform their impressions of an institution and why it is relevant.

This very thinking is key to the latest creative expression of the University's brand, Driven to Discover. This year's creative expression is called "Because." It is tied to our overall brand and it uses Because statements to more explicitly connect the University and the state's economy.

When we collectively and consistently use our brand assets and creative expressions, our audiences will recognize us, remember us, and ultimately, be more inclined to believe in and support us.

To that end, we are creating templates and standards for easy integration of the "Because" elements into your communication materials. These "Because" resources will be available later this month and will include direction for consistent use of photography, tone, and graphics; details on requesting the 3D Because model for use in your photo shoots; and more.

We are here to help and answer your questions or consult on ways to integrate "Because" into your communications. Why? Because this is YOUR brand. And "I approve this message."

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