The recent re-branding was a source of embarrassment within select peer groups. Comments were made such as:
· “Did a freshman GB class come up with this?”
· “Did the marketing dept, not have enough Case Studies readily available?”
· Along with numerous Harry Potter references due to the shape and feel of the new logo crest. A couple of my favorites:
“Lemme know when Prof Snape signs up to teach branding 301”
“Hope you get Gryffindor”
Due to the social media upheaval regarding the brand changing, we were all looking forward to seeing how the #BentleyBrand was going to respond earlier today with their twitter effort.
Below is an outline of some of the topics covered via twitter today, with highlighted questions and answers, to give you a feel for the online interaction. You can also click on Bentley's crest above to read about the brand. The PR efforts by the CMO, in result of the backlash, is quite notable. The team should be commended for this effort. This Social Media PR campaign, in response to the recent backlash, might prove a saving grace. It very well might provide healing for some students and alum who have determined this re-branding a detrimental failing in aiding the coherency of vision between the University and the individuals who attend and have attended the University. The online marketing community is still quite restless and intrigued by the branding efforts, desiring to learn more about it; hopefully, most will come to terms with the new image shortly. The twitter PR effort should be considered a success by the school and its community. Hopefully, a more positive and interactive relationship will result to propel the University forward.
It should be noted that some really enjoy the new branding. I, myself, love the word "prepared." Some said, "prepared" was too common an action adjective. They claimed, are not all schools supposed to prepare you? But I truly feel that Bentley "prepares" better than most. I am quite happy that the adjective found itself among four others in our new slogan. However, the greater issue is certainly not found within those nitpicking the small comments being made about the logo and slogan alone.
The greater issue could be how this re-branding is currently being received by the greater community as a branding blunder. How this received blunder by some, is affecting the greater community's opinion of Bentley's Marketing Department. Alum and students who are discouraged by the recent branding efforts believe that the effort should not be considered representative of the marketing major and courses taught at Bentley University. A few students and alum outright stating the recent re-branding is not demonstrative of their education.
While branding doesn't change the school and it doesn't change the education it provides. It can change the perception of both. While Bentley University made great strides in re-vamping a tired brand, they should have reached out better to its community. Local professionals agree that a more detailed and phased roll out plan was vital for the branding reception to have been more successful. They also state that the PR accomplished via Twitter demonstrates, while everything is not quite perfect yet, the school is moving in the right direction. The community also views the more recent active engagement as an impressive feat:
•Jeff Gabel @JeffGabel Always saw Brandeis as a tie yourself to a tree and protest school. Bentley's alum response to #bentleybrand is pretty staggering. Impressed.
Bentley University is becoming more and more competitive; additionally, apparently more and more active as well. Bentley's history is the backbone of the school’s success; thankfully, the school has realized under Gloria Larson’s leadership that the newly dubbed University needs to become more flexible to accommodate for changing times. While Bentley University Alum might not think themselves or their school “nimble,” I am grateful that Gloria is. Hopefully, this branding provides the continuity and enough change to represent where the school; more importantly, where it’s students, past & present, have been and where they are headed. Go Falcons!
Most students and alum agree, we want someone awesome who understands us to fulfill this position! @mashablejobs: Join @bentleyu as Social Media Manager http://on.mash.to/SPeV9I #jobs