• Tips for defining your target market

    Who are you hoping to reach with your messages? The first thoughts that come to mind are usually broad categories like “alumni,” “millennials” or “Illinois residents.” But it’s important to get even more detailed about your audience. The more clearly you define your target group, the better you can understand how – and where – […]
  • Growing a campus-wide market research program

    Unity, consistency and data-driven strategy. I was excited about the goals of the Strategic Marketing and Branding office before I even officially joined the team a couple weeks ago as the new Market Research Director. My own approach aligns well, as I plan to create a much more unified market research program at the university […]
  • Our top 4 goals for the design brand standards

    In every waking moment, each of us is taking in what we see around us, absorbing incoming data and giving it context, emotion and meaning. When you consider how powerful visual design is, it’s no surprise that it plays a critical role in brand identity and development. As we created the new U of I […]
  • Content over commercials

    Advances in technology and media have brought on significant changes in consumer behavior and content consumption. To successfully market and advertise in the current media landscape, you need to be in the business of content-production, not ad-production. Using the term "content" serves as a reminder that you are creating something people should want to consume. […]
  • Ten small(ish) things your team can do to begin implementing the new brand

    It’s been five weeks since we rolled out the new brand guidelines. While some units have been able to dive right in and begin implementing various aspects of the brand, others are understandably overwhelmed with other concerns (like re-opening the university in the midst of this pandemic). Trust us, we get it! No worries if […]
  • Designing with color accessibility in mind (part 2)

    If you’ve ever been outside on an extremely sunny day and tried to read something off the screen of a phone or tablet, you may have noticed it’s really difficult to make out what’s on the screen. While color contrast is always important for users with visual impairments, it can also make your content way […]
  • Know who you’re talking to – it's the key to everything else in marketing

    The first question a skilled marketing professional always asks is “Who are the specific people you want to reach with your message?” Defining a target market has to be the first focus, because it serves as the foundation of all elements in a marketing strategy.  Of course, the university has multiple audiences, and so do […]