Justin-Siena High School
An interview with Eileen Mize, Director of Communications, on Justin-Siena’s implementation of the Lasallian Education brand
1. Why does your school feel it is important to take part in this Regional branding effort to unite Lasallian Education?
As part of an extensive network of schools that spans centuries, continents, and cultures, it is important for each Lasallian work to harness the power that comes with such rich association. By consistently displaying the Lasallian Education brand each school or ministry can reinforce that association thereby adding value to its perceived identity and its credibility as an institution.
Internally, this branding is important to reinforce the notion to our students that they are part of a much bigger network and that other students around the world are sharing a common experience such as remembering that we are in the holy presence of God, or working to promote the Lasallian core principles.
2. Please share some details on your process to implement the Lasallian Education brand and plans for the future.
So far our strategy for promoting the Lasallian Education brand includes displaying a page on our website explaining the qualities of a Lasallian education in the common language and letting this information be accessed by a visual button on the homepage which consists of the Lasallian Education logo and unifying statement.
In addition, we have incorporated the logo and unifying statement on major printed items including our alumni magazine, Avanti; admissions materials; and commencement materials. The logo is also incorporated in digital form via the Braves Bulletin (our e-newsletter) and in email signatures. The inclusion in email signatures will be rolled out in a formal way with the start of the 2012-13 school year, as we will include its use in the official school style guide.
Plans for future use include the possibility of including some aspect of the visual identity on our business stationery, including letterhead and business cards. In addition, I plan to talk with teachers/directors in Lasallian Student Life in terms of making the mark visible to our students on a regular basis – maybe through liturgies, signage, etc.
Another vehicle for promoting the Lasallian Brand is via social media channels – there are many cross promotion opportunities on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube (etc.). If Lasallian schools “liked” and “shared” relevant posts of each other’s related to Lasallian Core Principles and mission, or simply common themes on the history of the Institute and life of La Salle (milestones, etc.), then the reach for general awareness of the brand would/could be vast. I think social media has a powerful potential to really hammer home the magnitude of our Lasallian network. These possibilities are very exciting to me.
3. How did the school community respond to the brand implementation?
The decision to include more information regarding the brand has been met with enthusiasm. People concur that promoting our involvement in a world wide network gives a sense of perspective of how we can all play a part in making a difference in the world, and especially if we band together. The only suggestion I have received so far is the use the Justin-Siena blue (navy) when printing the Lasallian Education logo – I think that is a good idea!
4. Justin-Siena tells the Lasallian Education story on this webpage: http://www.justin-siena.org/s/353/justinsiena.aspx?sid=353&gid=1&pgid=3155. Please explain why you presented it in that manner and what you hope to achieve.
Having a logo is great, but without backing it up with some information as to WHY we are including it as an extension of our own brand, then an opportunity to really make a connection is lost. I think in time the picture mark will become a sort of hallmark that can go without much else said as a way of indicating that various schools are in the same network, but in these early stages of launching this brand initiative there is much education to be done. All constituents need to be reminded that we are part of a larger network and that regardless of where we are in the world, or what communities we are specifically serving and how, we are all providing the basic qualities of a Lasallian education – so it is important to state that. I think providing that information on our own website reinforces the fact that we are not on a little island here in Napa, but really a cog in a much larger wheel serving and affecting a much larger population. Each organization within the network is unique, yet there are basic common characteristics we all possess – those are the qualities of a Lasallian education as outlined on that page. It’s as if this is the basic recipe that we all start with and then add on our unique components.
I think having this basic language replicated in various ways throughout the network makes it certain that we are all telling the same story and speaking the same language, thereby making the brand more effective and credible.