Research to Rebrand Brevard Community College

The Challenge: 

Brevard Community College (BCC) is a two-year, publicly supported post-secondary institution located in the heart of Florida’s Space Coast.  An accredited institution, BCC is recognized as one of America’s leading community colleges for quality in instruction, organization and innovative, cutting-edge programs.  It was one of the first community colleges in the country to offer an AA degree online.  Throughout its more than 50-year history, the College has taken a careful, reasoned approach to determine its direction and educational offerings, evolving to meet the needs of its community.

Responding to data that showed heavy demand for management education, the College decided to begin offering Bachelor degrees, starting with a Bachelor of Applied Science in Organizational Management.  This change in BCC’s status required that the College change its name, as it could no longer be defined as a traditional community college.

As part of its overall rebranding campaign, BCC selected Curley & Pynn to manage this initiative, starting with a research program to identify brand assets, understand audience perception and uncover both unknown obstacles and potential opportunities … the result of which, would be findings to help determine the College’s new brand (including a name, positioning statement and brand mark).

The Solution: 

Target audiences for the research process included a mix of external (community business and civic leaders, elected officials, BCC alumni and high school students) and internal stakeholders (current BCC students, BCC staff and faculty, and the BCC board of trustees).

Curley & Pynn created a timeline to guide all research, with a four-month deadline, for the completion of all related research efforts, reports and recommendations, as the new brand would be announced publicly during a board of trustees meeting.

BCC and Curley & Pynn applied informal and formal research techniques, including stakeholder interviews, focus groups and marketplace research.  The stakeholder interviews were held with cross-section samples of BCC’s internal and external stakeholders to generate input and explore perceptions.  This insight was used to develop initial brand recommendations, which were later tested during several focus group sessions with BCC students and community/business leaders.  Marketplace research of current state colleges was conducted to ensure no brand duplication, as well as the availability of online resources such as URL addresses and social media channels.   

The Results: 

After a thorough review of the research report and accompanying data provided by Curley & Pynn, the College’s leadership decided on a new brand – Eastern Florida State College / Explore. Achieve. Succeed.  The new brand delivered on the promise BCC made to its community and is forward-looking, while also incorporating some of the most important feedback from stakeholders.  A new brand mark was also created to represent the new brand as the College changes its name with official approval by the Florida Legislature.