Saturday, December 01, 2007

Aston University pays £65,000 for new logo

icBirmingham: "Aston University has unveiled a new brand to help it to compete better in the increasingly competitive higher education market.

The change will see the university's new logo - an orange triangle representing the shape of the campus - on buildings, signs and stationery at the city centre site later this month.

The rebranding exercise cost Aston a reported £65,000. But it stressed the change would not be paid for from teaching or research funds, as it was part of the university's business plan.

With universities battling for students and funding, vice chancellor Professor Julia King said a new brand had always been a priority for her since she started at Aston last year.

The new logo, which was designed with the help of leading London image company Spencer Dubois, will first be seen later this month, and will eventually be introduced across the whole campus.

A university spokesman defended the cost of the rebranding exercise and said there were very sound business reasons for the amount of money and research that had gone into it.

"A project of this nature is a massive undertaking," he said. "It is time-consuming, complex and due to the subjective nature of design, sometimes controversial.

"But we identified five very good reasons why we needed to create a new brand and why we settled on the final designs.

"Firstly, Aston University's new strategy provides a very clear set of objectives, challenges and targets up to 2012 and many of these rely heavily on us having a strong reputation, a high profile and a solid brand identity which will continue to take us forward.

"It is also vital that Aston has a brand that is flexible and can be adapted for the diverse audiences we need to attract regionally, nationally and internationally.

"We need to respond to changes in the higher education sector too, we need to show we offer value for money to our students first and foremost but also increasingly to our corporate partners as well.

"As we operate in what is a rapidly changing environment, Aston needs to be able to anticipate future changes and ensure our continued success.

"Finally, and most fundamentally, we must have a brand that reflects the personality, values and aspirations of Aston, from the logo to the key messages we tell people about the university. Most people would agree that the previous identity did not reflect Aston's dynamic, progressive, modern attitude and so it is only right that we took the opportunity to update our 'look'."

Graham Hooley, the senior pro-vice-chancellor at Aston and a professor of marketing, said the rebranding was crucial in a sector as competitive as higher education.

"I believe it represents a significant improvement on the previous one and will prove to be an invaluable asset in raising

Aston's profile," he said. "A good brand defines what that organisation is and what it wants to be. It does so visually, but more than that it lays out a set of values for us all to follow, in the way we work and interact with our contacts."

Aston University was founded in 1895 as Birmingham Municipal Technical School. It changed its name when it was given university status in 1966, but kept a strong focus on technology-related courses.

It was ranked 13th on this year's Good University Guide league table, 20 places above Birmingham University.

Its decision to rebrand itself comes at a time when universities across the region are looking at ways to improve their image to attract in lucrative students. Last month the Perry Barr-based University of Central England became Birmingham City University in a £200,000 rebranding exercised designed to link it more closely to the city's image."

FF: "They should give me a call... I can help them to design for FREE, :P"


Anonymous said...

If it's 65000 pounds for an orange triangle, how much would it cost of a pink hexagon?

Anonymous said...

Dont you know that every angle on the new logo, even the colours used are carefully adjusted to have the desire effect on our subconscious? That is to trick our minds into thinking Aston is the best uni in the world!

Now you know why it cost 65,000. it is all in consulting the psychologists.:P

Anonymous said...

That logo looks like it was made on Microsoft Paint

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