What to consider when building a brand for your Multi-Academy Trust
The importance of your Multi-Academy Trust's brand
It is well known that the education sector has seen a big rise in the amount of multi-academy trusts (MAT) forming – it is a trend that is set to continue over the coming years, with the government predicting that most schools which convert to academy status will join an MAT in the future. Trusts may not always think about themselves as a 'brand', but branding is a crucial part of finding success as an MAT.
Forming an MAT involves the merging of assets – this not only means structurally and economically but includes the merging of ideas and identities. A brand needs to be created that encapsulates everything the trust stands for and represents, this can be a tricky process but can be achieved by asking the right questions and collaborating on your answers.
Taking the first steps toward building a brand
Creating a brand is about much more than just creating a logo. The very first steps are to ask yourself as a trust:
- What is the vision for your trust?
- What are the values of your trust?
- What is the main focus you want to instil in your schools?
- How would you describe your personality as a trust?
- How do you want to communicate and display yourself to teachers, pupils, and schools?
These all need consideration before you even think about visuals.
Once your team and key stakeholders have aligned on these questions, the next stage is to decide how to interpret this into all your communications – that includes:
- A colour palette
Keep your Multi Academy Trust's brand consistent
Consistency is vital when it comes to branding – everything that comes from the trust, whether that be your website, emails or internal collateral, needs to reflect your vision and values. It can be helpful to create a set of 'brand guidelines' that state rules for your brand clearly for everybody to follow.
Establishing your brand begins with an understanding of who you are as trust is, what you stand for and how you want to communicate to that, only after this does the process of applying that set of values to your marketing assets begin.
Going through this branding process and consistently reinforcing this brand not only helps parents understand what the trust and its schools stand for, but it helps to align internal team members – when you have a set of brand guidelines to refer to, you minimise confusion around how you should be communicating.
As part of our commitment to helping schools and trusts achieve their greatest potential, we offer a comprehensive branding service, designed especially for MATs. We can take you through the journey of cementing your vision and values with our branding experts, then transform these into a set of branding assets that reflect everything you stand for as a trust, including a website.