What is the UC ANR brand?
A brand is not a logo. Logos are used to visually communicate brands in a memorable way, but they are not "the brand." The UC ANR brand is the set of perceptions, emotions and experiences that come to mind when people think of our organization (e.g. the difference between the Starbucks logo and the set of feelings and perceptions you have about the Starbucks brand). Our brand promotion efforts seek to positively influence those perceptions and to promote greater awareness of UC ANR’s value throughout the state.
Because we all represent UC ANR in locations across California, it is everyone’s job to influence perceptions and thereby strengthen the overall brand. We do this by presenting consistent, credible and authentic messages about how we benefit California. Consistency is key to building awareness and understanding, because communicating a fragmented or overly complicated brand confuses audiences and makes it hard for them to understand both what we do and the value we bring. Simply stated, that means every type of communication we craft – presentations, web pages, publications, social media posts – is an opportunity to grow brand awareness and positive sentiment for UC ANR as a whole. The more people become aware of the totality of our organization's value, the more they will support or engage with our organization. UC ANR brand recognition is especially important for outreach to elected officials, prospective funders/donors and prospective employees.
UC ANR is a complex, multi-location organization with programmatic sub-brands that are known and respected by their audiences – UC Cooperative Extension, 4-H, Master Gardener, UC IPM and more. Visually, these sub-brands are not cohesive with one another, and not all of them dovetail well with the UC ANR logo. Our organization also resides within UCOP, which has a brand identity that is distinct from ours and from the UC campus identities. This complexity has often led to confusing, multi-logo branding in UC ANR materials that does not advance awareness of the value of our organization as a whole in the minds of viewers.
The branding section of the toolkit is designed to help you communicate about UC ANR and its sub-brands in a manner that supports the growth of UC ANR brand recognition while protecting the brand equity of sub-brands.
A brand promise is a statement of what stakeholders and end-users can expect from our educational content, programs and services. It summarizes the “value proposition” of UC ANR – the benefits our audiences experience in working with us. Our brand promise is as follows:
We promise to make a difference in the lives of Californians by supporting and improving the health of our state’s communities, environment, food systems, workforce and economy.
The UC ANR brand personality traits reflect how people view the personality or "DNA" of our organization. They are derived from market research data, studies conducted by UC ANR and UCOP in 2007 and 2013, and a comprehensive brand audit conducted in 2022. These brand personality traits should be considered in crafting messaging as well as the tone and look-and-feel of communication materials. These traits reflect the personalities of all programmatic sub-brands as well as the parent brand.
Examples of brand personality reflected in messaging
While UC ANR has a range of academic and program personnel (advisors, community educators, specialists), success is built around our many partnerships across the state. UC ANR partners with state, federal, and county agencies, non-profit and private organizations, community colleges, California State University campuses, and each of the 10 UC campuses to conduct research and translate research findings into practice at the local level.
UC ANR programs assist communities, farmers, and ranchers in implementing climate-smart soil and water management practices, reducing greenhouse gas emissions in forested and working landscapes, and expanding public awareness of climate risks and effective adaptation strategies.
Got questions about branding? Contact Strategic Communications.