Today we’re launching a new logo, together with a new website. Here is why have we decided it was time for a fresh start and how we did it.
Change for the sake of change is not a good reason to have a new logo. Our school is changing, and therefore we felt the need for a new representation of who we are, a truly international community and an institution that’s constantly evolving.
Why a new identity?
1. Not doing the job
Our old logo was very easy to get wrong. The 3 colours made it difficult to have the right colour on the right medium. It became especially challenging when using the logo on a coloured backgrounds.
2. Not reflecting who we are
We are a vibrant community of more than 60 nationalities. We wanted a logo that reflects that dynamism. We needed a modern graphic way of representing our community without falling for the clichés of the international schools.
Staying true to ourselves
1. Start with research
Understanding our community, our families, students and teachers. What makes this community unique? ISL led several interviews with parents and various internal workshops.
We also benchmarked against other schools in the area and worldwide to understand how schools represent themselves.
2. Select external partners.
To bring fresh perspectives and best practices into the project, we brought external expertise for the brand as well as for the web.
3. Messaging – improve the way we talk about ourself
This is the core of our brand, what our school is about. We worked intensively with members of our community to better translate what makes ISL what we are. Our messaging improved by simplifying it and choosing a language that is closer to our families and community.
4. Create the new visual identity
We worked with a branding agency in Switzerland to visualise what it means to be a welcoming learning community, inspiring restless curiosity in our students.
The font was custom made in order to reflect our school personality. We created a semi-serif that has an academic feel but is also truly contemporary.
The logo is composed of the custom font and a symbol.
The Logomark is constructed by three layers of interwoven rays, depicting
the interconnection between the school, the parents and the students.
But that’s not all. If you cut the circle to make a square out of it, it becomes reminiscent of a sun quadrant. It therefore represents the hours of the day we spend together at school.
The colour palette is simple and the different colours reflects the variety of people at school.
We started the website and its content from scratch. If you are reading this on your mobile, you will probably see the improvement in usability. We created new features such as People of ISL to tell the story of our community. This article you are reading is on our blog, please if you wish to contribute as a community member or as an education specialist. We are keen on hearing your stories!
The lessons learnt
1. Don’t just jump on a design, the logo is the last piece of a rebranding. First, understand your problem. Write about it, take the time to reflect.
2. Listen and take good criticism from people inside your organisation. But don’t try to please everyone.
3. Select the right partners. We went with experts not related to the education business to get a fresh and different look.
4. Tell the story. A logo is nice, but we like stories.
“The new logo shows collaboration and connectedness of the school community, all here for the purpose of delivering superior quality education to its students.”
HERVÉ PEITREQUIN, HEAD OF MARKETING AT ISL
When you visit our school, you will see the logo appear on new visuals around the campus. Over the next few months, we will deploy new communication materials. Lookout for more updates regularly on our blog. Find it at https://www.isl.ch/blog/
So we have a new logo. Our school is changing and so is our look.
Thank you to all the teams who took part in the journey.