Friday Five: #highered rankings ranklings

rankings-honestreportingCollege rankings season is in full swing now, and in case you haven’t noticed, the ranks of rankings is growing. Once upon a time, only a select few rankings organizations existed — led by U.S. News & World Report‘s annual countdown of best colleges. Today, though, it seems there’s a ranking for everything — reputation, value added, return on investment, etc. Media outlets like Forbes, Washington Monthly, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist and USAToday have joined the party, while online data-gathering sites like PayScale have fueled the outcomes-based approaches to rankings. Aided by the Internet, new rankings seemingly pop up overnight like fungi on a lawn — and clutter the higher ed marketing pro’s inbox with notifications of your school’s standing and requests for linkbacks to their sometimes shady rankings. Continue reading

Brain-dead branding?

Is branding making our organizations dumber?

Is branding making our organizations dumber?

This article about organizational culture was making the rounds on Facebook a couple of weeks ago. It’s a longish read, but if you’re interested in the way organizations work, you might want to peruse it. And if you’re involved in the work of branding or marketing, then yes, you really should take the time to read Stupefied: How organisations enshrine collective stupidity and employees are rewarded for checking their brains at the office door. Continue reading

Mascot makeovers: A tricky business

The recently redesigned -- and more recently reconsidered -- Billiken mascot made its debut on Sept. 20. (Photo by Bill Barrett via SLU website.)

The recently revamped — and more recently discarded — Billiken mascot made its debut on Sept. 20. (Photo by Bill Barrett via SLU website.)

The occasional visual identity upgrade is part and parcel of university branding activities these days. It isn’t unusual for universities to revise their color palettes or refine the logos or other institutional symbols — although logo revisions can bring controversy and headaches to brand managers. Continue reading

Friday Five: 5 questions for Daryl Weber @BrandedCortex), author of ‘Brand Seduction’

Brand_Seduction_coverWe like to think that we are in control of our thoughts — that the decisions we make are always thoughtful, logical and rational. But as recent neuroscience research is revealing, our decision-making is heavily influenced by our subconscious. The same is true in marketing, where the field of neuroscience presents a world of opportunities — and concerns — for the marketer as well as the consumer.

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