Posted: Monday, February 29, 2016 6:30 pm
Northwest University unveiled a new logo and tagline during winter break. They announced the change through Twitter on January 6, 2016, saying “You may have noticed things look a little different! We have a new logo and a new website design! Take a look: northwestu.edu“
Steve Bostrom, NU’s Marketing Director, said “the [previous] logo looked somewhat dated and didn’t fully express that we [are] a Christian university.” There were many guesses as to what the old logo meant, including from President Castleberry. He noted that “the old [logo] depicted a steep upward curve,” which “certainly described the enrollment history of Northwest University between 1998 and the present.” Castleberry said, “We are in a new period now in which the main story will be our academic quality and increased scholarship.”
The marketing team said that they wanted to develop a logo that was built on three core values. They felt it needed to “build upon our existing brand equity,” “communicate our Christian heritage and commitment,” and communicate our ever-increasing academics. They also wanted to modernize it and make it have greater meaning.
“Mark Sheraton on the marketing team developed a great solution,” said Bostrom. Sheraton proposed to incorporate the university seal into the new logo. The seal, which can be seen on display around campus, has been a part of NU since the beginning. They took the four symbols from the seal and added them into the new logo.
Also new to NU is the tagline “The University of Possibility.” The new tagline emphasizes that whether someone is actually studying here on campus or completing their studies online, NU will provide them the foundation they need to reach their goals.
It took about six months to strategize, create, and receive approval from the Executive Board to start implementing the new logo and tagline. In those six months, Bostrom presented the new marketing materials not only to the board but also to students and faculty to make sure it was well accepted by the entire NU community. According to Bostrom, there was “universal acceptance” of the new logo and tagline. Castleberry is “very excited about the new logo” and “predicts that we will be using it for a long time to come.” He also announced that NU, previously categorized as a baccalaureate college, is now classified as a Master’s University and said that the new logo nicely expresses our strong academic standing.
The marketing team is busy implementing the new logo, which includes replacing signage around campus. This is by far the most expensive change that comes with the new logo, especially for the signage along 108th Ave NE. While they do not have an exact timeframe yet, the marketing team is working on it and said that “ideally some of the work will be done over the summer.” John Vicory is “currently working with signage vendors to get competitive bids.” The marketing team has “made a request to increase [their] signage budget,” Bostrom said.
“The logo is an important update to the NU brand, but it is not nearly as important as our students,” said Bostrom. “Whether they realize it or not, each student is a brand ambassador helping us to build the NU brand with much more power than our logo, postcards, or website ever will… our students are the best ads we have.”