Thursday, November 12, 2009

Brand Lessons: MADmen Principals Brand a Better School Culture from the Inside Out

If you've been listening, you are getting the sense of why BRANDING, a MADmen Principle from MAD MADison Avenue, should be part of every administrator's vision for sustaining or restoring a school culture. Branding is about building relationships, knowing what you stand for, and agreement to deliver on that promise.

Doesn't sound too crazy to me. Doesn't sound like "adspeak". It sounds genuine and it sounds necessary for leaders to act upon.

Still I talk with people who think BRANDING is MARKETING, and the feel uncomfortable with that sales concept. I tell them not to worry, educators are great at marketing...selling education to the masses, standards and's all about marketing

So briefly, and if you are trying to get your head around using this branding model as part of your professional toolbox, schools need a branding model today to invigorate culture quickly. Spending time brainstorming about branding, facilitating thinking and finally clarifying a school brand is time well spent. The language and attitude that shifts positively in the process of understanding and building a brand is an end in itself. And if that's all that happens on the inside of a school organization, fine. People will recognize themselves as part of something and that impacts behavior positively from new hires to "lifers". Now when you want to Sell your built BRAND to the community...that's marketing!

an audit about what you stand for

defining the total experience of your customer, consumer, client with your service

an action item that goes to what you promise to deliver, and people's expectations

a visual image of positive signals and your effort to make them pervasive

MARKETING is something else. When you bring your brand to the audience to sell, to the bigger are marketing. Another worthwhile endeavor. But one step at a time folks!

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