University of Texas at Austin Issues Marketing and Branding RFP

UT Tower and Fountain

The University of Texas at Austin, the largest academic component of The University of Texas System, a major research university, and home to more than 50,000 students and 24,000 faculty and staff members is seeking a branding and marketing company. More specifically, The University of Texas at Austin’s McCombs School of Business (“School”) is seeking a partner to complete strategic brand refresh, brand experience and communication plan.

They have issued an RFP for the following services:

  1. Strategy Review and Brand Positioning Development
  2. Design, Deployment and Communication Plan

Scope of Work

Contractor will provide the following services to University:

Strategy Review and Brand Positioning Development

  1. Discovery: Identify Stakeholders and Create Engagement Plan
    • Identify internal core stakeholders (e.g. School Dean, students, department chairs, and School’s sub brands), internal but indirect stakeholders (e.g. faculty, departments) and external and indirect stakeholders (e.g. Red McCombs, alumni, donors, media, taxpayers, peer academics)
    • Engage stakeholder groups at various levels as a part of asset and School’s current brand perception discovery process and strategy development, input and approval processes.
  2. Review Current Assets and Materials
    • Conduct internal and external audience research (qualitative and quantitative) of brand strength, awareness, and position.
    • Review and assess School’s current internal and external communication strategy.
    • Review and understand communication channels currently used by School.
  1. Review and Assessment of School’s Key Competitors
    • Identify School’s key competitors for undergraduate, graduate and executive education programs.
    • Review key competitors’ strengths, weaknesses and implications, if any, for School’s brand positioning development.
  1. Positioning Development, Proposal and Validation Provide guidance for development, selection and validation of the proposed positioning platform considering stakeholders’ engagement, and qualitative and quantitative research (ref. Section 5.2.A.2.a of this RFP).
  1. Deliverables
    • Original brand research (incorporating any existing research) with report of results.
    • Written recommendations for strategies and tactics to increase brand and sub-brands awareness. The recommendations will reflect School’s core strengths, address the needs and aspirations of the next generation of students, provide a perspective on the evolving needs of the business environment the School will need to address and inspire other key constituents including alumni, faculty, staff, and others.
    • Brand standards manual and style guide.

Design, Deployment, and Communication Plan

Use brand strategy, student lifecycle communications strategy, internal and external brand communication strategy, and public relations strategy recommendations

Visual identity solutions will include:

  1. Design – graphic elements / visual identity (for the brand and any sub brands.
  2. Design Guidelines – specific guidelines to provide clear direction for design execution across audiences, touchpoints, channels and experience in both print and digital environments.
  3. Communication Guidelines – tone of voice and messaging guide (e.g. story telling guidelines and examples) to inform future communications development and execution consistent with the new positioning and tailored to the identified audiences and their needs.
  4. New website concept – this enhances new user experience and becomes a point of “first engagement” for many audiences, particularly prospective students.

Proposal due on Friday, July 22nd, 2016 to:

The University of Texas at Austin
110 Inner Campus Drive, MAI 132
Austin, Texas 78712-1140

Edelman PR and Taylor Public Relations both have prominent offices in Texas.

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