Metro State’s Board of Trustees passed
a resolution at its Feb. 3 meeting to assess the College’s name.
Beginning now and continuing through April,
Sector Brands will conduct a name assessment to determine its contribution to
the College's vision, loyalty, brand and image. Findings will be reported to
the College beginning in June.
This assessment is part of a series of
brand assessments that have been taking place since 2006.
“It’s very natural
for people to start going towards the discussion of a name change, but this is
an assessment and we will not be talking about a name change,” says Cathy
Lucas, associate vice president of communications and advancement, who will
oversee the process. “We look forward to the results.”
According to Stacy Lewis with Sector
Brands, the timing of the assessment couldn’t be better. “When the economy turns
south, it's a smart time to take a look at every aspect of your brand to make sure your organization is positioned for success."
She adds: “Like everything else, logo,
publications, and messages, the name is just another element. It’s not
uncommon. It’s best practice for any organization, higher education or
otherwise, to take a look at things such as names and branding, especially when
you are going through as much evolution as the College has in the last few years.
This has come about literally as part of administration evaluating all of the
factors of success for the school, including master’s programs, advertising,
admissions and First-Year Success. This literally falls in that bucket.”
The question for all of these is “does
[the name] support our mission of preeminence?” says Lewis, who notes that they
are seeing a real spike among their clients wanting to do name assessments.
During the assessment, Sector Brands
will implement a combination of methodologies with internal and external stakeholders.
They expect to sample about 500 alumni and students through an electronic
survey. In addition, they plan to have about 125 in-depth discussions through
focus groups and individual interviews with community and business leaders on
and off campus.
The assessment will explore the name’s
strengths, limitations and impact on the College’s brand and reputation. A key
audience during the study will be alumni, according to Lewis.
“Alumni have always been very vocal and concerned about
the College on many levels,” she says.
assessment is estimated to cost $25,000.