Albuquerque’s Escuela del Sol had a problem. Even after 40 years of continuous operation, there was growing confusion among parents as to what the Montessori system offered their children, how it differed f r o m other educational methods, and what results they should expect. The lack of communication was making it difficult to maintain, much less grow, enrollment, and had caused some dissatisfaction with currently enrolled families.
Now if Montessori schools know how to do anything, it is how to prepare kids to be creative thinkers and problem solvers. So the school’s board decided to practice what they teach. They put on their thinking caps, thought like a business and came up with a business solution-applying the very same traits they strive to nurture in their students.
This creative bit of problem solving led them to Ripe Inc., an Albuquerque-based design firm that specializes in building brands and identities for businesses. Normally. But the chance to work with such a forward thinking school was too good an opportunity to pass up. Ripe had to be equally creative in taking on a branding assignment f r o m a school. But they did their homework well.
Working closely with the school they developed an engaging, informative, visual and verbal communication system to clarify and deliver the brand message. The message was developed through intensive workshops in which consensus about the key attributes of the school’s brand were uncovered and documented. The analysis and evaluation became an internal brand reference guide book provided to all faculty and staff members-so there’s common understanding and consistent language when communicating the Escuela del Sol brand.
It also became the conceptual platform for developing the graphics libraries, website, messaging system, and electronic template that facilitates the school’s unique educational approach. And for developing its award-winning print collateral as well. The school’s new logo & stationery design has been s e l e c t e d to appear in PRINT’s 2009 Regional Design Annual. Planned advertising campaigns will focus on specific challenges-like boosting enrollment, and increasing parent engagement in the school’s educational process.
Escuela del Sol has made it their business to enhance their communications and their profile within the community. And they expect business to be good.