“Brand” is a term that is often associated with how a company presents itself graphically. In reality, a brand is much bigger and more important than a logo or font choice.
For an organization, brand is the experience they promise to deliver to their customers or members. From a customer’s perspective, brand is the impression left upon them of how well an organization delivered on its promise. This impression is formed based on every interaction they have with an organization and its products—including printed course materials. For a new, prospective learner, are your training materials an adequate reflection of the quality and value of your programs?
If you’re unsure, you’re certainly not alone. Many associations are challenged with growing their continuing education programs and increasing performance, leaving few resources available to overhaul the design and structure of their training course books.
Our customer, the National Retail Federation Foundation (NRFF), found themselves in a similar position. One of their primary course books did not provide an optimal experience for instructors and learners. What they found, however, is that by investing the time to make the necessary changes, they helped make their course more marketable, and more valuable to their learners. NRFF was able to accomplish their goals by focusing on three main objectives:
- Rewrite the book for more robust content which allowed students to choose self-study or instructor-led sessions
- Ensure core content matches between both instructor and student materials
- Implement design and print quality that enhances the learning materials, and ultimately, their brand
You can read more about their story here.
Today, associations are challenged with remaining relevant to a changing member base, at a time when educational content can be accessed with a simple online search. Your brand needs to portray your organization as the authoritative voice in your industry, and then deliver on it via every touch point (including training course materials!) you have with current, new, and prospective members.