Ready for It All

Ithaca College’s new branding initiative takes flight

By Steve Shoemaker

It’s hard to sum up Ithaca College in one word, but at the start of the fall semester, IC did exactly that. On September 1, the College revealed a new branding and marketing campaign designed to distill the entire IC experience into one concept: Ready.

“The Ready concept is a natural fit for the College because a good brand promise is founded in truth,” says President Tom Rochon.

The simplicity of the message contrasts with the effort that goes into the result: At Ithaca College, students will be made ready for whatever comes after graduation through coursework and hands-on experience. The IC experience, paired with dedicated faculty and staff, will see to it.

The campaign is the result of a year’s worth of effort, which kicked off August 2010 and included focus groups with students, faculty, staff, and alumni. In October 2010 a market research study was conducted in which Ithaca College surveyed its higher education peers and prospective students. The creative concept was tested with a survey sent to the same higher education peers, as well as prospective students, current students, faculty, staff, and alumni.

“As soon as the Ready idea was suggested, we were all shocked by how simple it was and yet how perfectly it represented Ithaca’s unique strengths,” said Rachel Reuben, associate vice president for marketing communications.

With the concept in place, staff began collecting student, alumni, and faculty success stories. The stories serve as the main content for the campaign and highlight the ways Ithaca College has prepared its students and alumni to be forward thinking, professional, well-prepared, and ready for the future.

Ready stories have already been used in online, radio, newspaper, and magazine ads. The first wave of ads included free-standing inserts in the New York Times in select regions. You may even see an ad appear on your Facebook page as the College reaches out to alumni and collects their Ready stories. If you submit a story, you will be sent a window decal with the new logo.

The new marketing campaign coincides with an evolved visual identity for Ithaca College, including a new logo, a revised color palette, and fresh typography. This new identity has been incorporated into the Ithaca College website and all promotional and informational materials. Merchandise with the new logo can be purchased at the bookstore or at