To develop a new brand that unifies Mesa Public Schools’ preschool offerings, takes the confusion out of selecting a program for a parent’s child and allows for far better brand recognition in conjunction with the district’s identity.
Originally named Early Childhood Programs, to say that the department’s programming was hard to understand would be an understatement. Eventhough Early Childhood Programs offered (generally) the same experience to all of its students, the department marketed eight different programs based on the needs of the student and their parent’s financial status. It was expected that parents would know the difference between each program and select the one that best fit their child. This was confusing.
The goal of the rebranding initiative was to rid the department of all of the enrollment confusion and just offer one option to parents, KinderU. While all of the same needs-based programs remained, it would now be the descretion of the department staff to select the best place for a student to be placed. This created brand unity in the fact that parents and children could now say they attended KinderU, instead of First Things First, Pre-K, Head Start, Pre-K Plus, MELP, Child Development Centers, PEER or Special Ed Pre-K. It would also give a much better opportunity to market the program as a whole, instead of segmented sections.
The brand’s identity was developed over several brainstorming sessions. While the department wanted to retain some of the whismy its previous branding retained, we pushed them to understand that it’s irrational to market their program to the children who are attending it. Afterall, it’s the parents who are the decision-makers and conveying a high-quality learning experience should be paramount over all.
Eventually, after several iterations, the final identity was decided upon, after utilizing an updated version of the “running man” from the department’s previous logo. The rebranding has gone over huge within the district and enrollment rates have significantly increased. The identity can seen being flown outside neighborhood schools that house KinderU programs, as well as bus advertisements and even news paper ads.
Derek was awarded the 2015 Award of Excellence in Publications and Electronic Media by the National School Public Relations Association for his work and design on this branding initiative. His work will be featured at the NSPRA Seminar Exchange Center in Nashville, Tennessee, from July 12 – 15, 2015. Derek’s name is also featured on the NSPRA website, as an awardee (linked above)!
Identity created in the rebranding and simplification of the Mesa Public Schools Preschool Education Program. The logo is used in various print and web distributions, and resides on the masthead of the program’s new website.