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Ad Campaign in creative phase only

A story in the media today implies that NC State has made the decision to go back to the “We all go to NC State” ad campaign of the mid-1990s.  That is not the case.

While I like the message at the end of the ad and have blogged about it here and talked about it around campus, we’re not ready to go there.  This is one of several directions we’re considering.  We haven’t even gotten the Chancellor involved in the discussion, and I can tell you, nothing will happen without his involvement.

So for now, keep the ideas coming.  The creative process doesn’t happen overnight.  Red does mean go at NC State.  NC State is North Carolina’s University (and North Carolina is a pretty cool state). And when we have big challenges to address and problems to solve, we look to NC State.

Have a great holiday.

Passion Rules!

1 of Many


1 John Marston { 05.28.10 at 12:55 pm }

Mr. Hice,

I also feel that along with slogans we need to focus on our logos. While the new 3 wolves on the mountain logos are fine, I feel that the updated strutting wolf does not improve upon the previous design. Many people wish that the logos for NCSU (along with the block S of course) should be these:



I’m not sure if you have control over the logos, but NCSU has gone through an obscene amount of logos in the last 15 years and it puzzles many why we didn’t just stick with the first few original wolf logos we had.

2 Tweets that mention Ad Campaign in creative phase only HiceSchool Blog -- Topsy.com { 05.28.10 at 1:12 pm }

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by NC State Alumni, Joe Hice. Joe Hice said: hiceschool.com post: Ad Campaign in creative phase only – http://bit.ly/d2MbHO […]

3 Kevin { 06.05.10 at 2:20 pm }

I think the “struttin wolf” and the block “S” should be our logos. I never liked the diamond or the 3 wolf heads.

As for “we all go to NC State” I personally like that message. That being said, I think the University should find a message that appeals to the youth.

4 Joe { 06.06.10 at 8:08 am }

I’d personally like to see NC State filmed from the air (i.e. from a helicopter), with Centennial Campus being the “center piece”. It is huge University and I think this can be appreciated from the air. Bigger is better.

I think that research campus, which we all forget was voted the #1 Research Science Park of the Year in 2007 because the University never marketed it effectively (which is the same accolade received by RTP several years earlier!!!), is what distinguishes NC State from other universities (thank Jim Hunt for the land, given to us at his discretion in the 80s). This accolade should be shouted from the roof tops because it is a big deal.

Also I would incorporate SAS, Red Hat, and Cree among other internationally known spin offs into the commercial. For example, show the Beijing Olympics opening ceremony where Cree lights lit up the place. Show Cullen Jones winning the gold. These could be short clips “collaged” together if you will.

Our association with Raleigh and RTP is important, as they received as many accolades as any in the country. Leverage this as much as possible. Incorporate these rankings into the commercial. We should go after San Francisco market by the way, because they are our competitors and counterparts on the West Coast. Those students and researchers should know about us (NC State, Raleigh, RTP, Centennial, SAS, Red Hat, Cree). Separately each of the above organizations are strong and have some name recognition but together they are extremely impressive. When people think RTP, SAS, Linux, or Cree, they should think NC State and vice versa. Co-brand them.

Also incorporate the Korean campus somehow as this is also unique and distinguishes the school.

The commercial should be visually stimulating and captivating, which would strongly contrast to the awfully dull and cheap commercials most schools run. I’d ask the CEOs of Cree, SAS, and Red Hat if they’d be interested in pitching in money for a commercial or other strategic advertisements. Not sure how appealing that would be but I’d like to think Goodnight in particular would at least consider such. Regardless of the money, just get their best wishes.

Beyond the commercials that air during football games, print ads in large markets should associate NC State with the accomplishments mentioned above. This will be much more effective than a silly slogan.

I also strongly encourage the administration to max the out-of-state enrollment limits as the benefits of having these students greatly outweighs the costs. Woodard has shared this view publicly but I hope he means it. We need effective advertisement to attract talented students from other states, because quite frankly, NC State is not nationally recognized due in large part to a lack in athletic success.

Thank you for considering my ideas.

5 Joe { 06.07.10 at 10:39 am }

I was brainstorming with some colleagues and we came up with a handful of good ad ideas. One idea was, “We’re all connected by NC State”. The idea for the ad would be to showcase students and alumni worldwide, all of which have originated from NC State. The feel of the ad would be similar to a recent milk ad circulating on television right now. In the milk ad, different people and locations are brought together by tricky camera transitions that make it appear as if everyone is in the same location, even though they aren’t. For example, the new ad would show a student at our Korean campus, and that student could hand a folder off screen to an engineer, a graduate of NCSU working on their latest project in California, etc., touching on other various aspects of our University. This would be a good way of establishing a sense of team no matter if you’re a student, potential student, alumni, or attend State via distance education. The ad would tell its viewers, “No matter where you end up, you’re still part of the pack.” Narrated and accompanied by some uplifting and confident music, I think it would be advertising that any Wolfpacker would be proud to watch.

6 Ben { 06.10.10 at 1:38 pm }

From the same brainstorm that the previous poster, Joe, was a part of another one of the ideas that came about was speaking to what it means to be an NC State graduate (though, really, to be part of NC State or just to be NC State is more accurate).

The gist of the idea was to have a series of ads that highlight what really makes being a part of the NC State family so wonderful. For example, one ad might focus on the innovations that several NC State grads have contributed that benefited society, another might speak to how we bring together so many unique disciplines and ideas both on and beyond campus, a third might talk about how much our faculty value helping students, then distance education, campus experience, etc.

However, each ad, after presenting several serious, pride-invoking facts about what being NC State means, the ad would close on a fact that, while true, has a more humorous and memorable slant to it (for example: “…and some of the best tailgating in the ACC”, “Oh, and don’t forget the football.”, etc.). I think having some sort of humor incorporated into the ads would really help them to stand out and be remembered (even viral).

There’s already so many serious commercials out there for higher education that all broadcast nearly the same message that you could practically have the same commercial and just change the name at the end. So how do we stand out and get remembered? Give the audience reason to watch the ad again and again (as well as show it to all of their friends)–creating a good laugh is one way among several to achieve this, and I’d love to see a try at it from State.

Go Pack! 😀

7 Mike { 06.11.10 at 12:13 pm }

Another idea to toss into the hat:

“Our Faculty. Your Future.”

Basically this campaign would showcase one of the greatest assets NC State has to offer: its faculty. Not only is there a huge variety of interesting classes offered in all sorts of subject matters, but the research conducted by the faculty is having a notable impact on a national and even global scale.

The ads could highlight specific examples of faculty from across the various programs and show how their work is affecting the future. This could be as simple as the amount of care and enthusiasm towards teaching our faculty are famous for all the way up to cutting-edge research projects led by faculty and assisted by students.

Along with promoting the faculty, another point to focus on would be how faculty are innovating the way classes are taught here at State. Technology is big in our classrooms, and we’re constantly striving to increase student engagement and experience by using it intelligently. This would even bring attention to our Distance Education programs, which still stress the importance of having that 1 to 1 interaction of student with faculty, despite the two not sharing the same physical space.

To summarize:
– showcase our faculty and the cool things they teach
– emphasize our world renowned research faculty
– show 10-20 faculty in various programs
– promote technology, research, student interaction, distance education

Thanks for your time and consideration!

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