What is your STEM Program’s Brand?
One of the first things STEM programs have to decide is who its audience will be. Are you looking to provide new opportunities to underserved populations in the local community. Maybe you are trying to find environmentally concerned middle schoolers to become citizen scientists. Maybe your goal is to challenge tech savvy teens to excel in robotics.
There is a broad landscape of approaches. Where are you in that landscape?
Clear brand identity is crucial as you chart your course to success. What is your personal brand and how is that reflected in your initiative?
Personal Branding is the practice of marketing people and their careers as brands. We all have a personal brand reflected in what we do in person and online including social media. In short you are your brand.
Professional brand agencies have a host of labels they use to describe an organization’s direction. These help to make the identity and messaging of your brand clear. Following are questions every program provider should ask themselves.
What is your organization’s Purpose? Why does your organization exist, beyond making money? A few things to consider are:
- What do you value most?
- What are you passionate about?
- What drives the organization?
- What does the world need that you are able to provide?
What is your Vision or story? What does your organization want to be in 1 year, 5 years? What would you say to inspire staff or partners? A few sample questions would be:
- What problem are you looking to solve?
- What does success look like?
- Who benefits from your organization’s services?
Your Mission statement is your roadmap. What is the promise your brand makes to its’ customers? When you are putting together your mission statement ask yourself:
- What do we do?
- How do we do it?
- Who do we do it for?
- What value are we bringing?
What is most important to your organization? How would you describe the culture? Those are the Values. Customers trust a brand that shares their values. So what do you stand for? Some examples:
- Committed to Excellence
Finally what is your Strategy? Your strategy should be ambitious and reflect the stages of growth on the road to success. A few sample questions as you define your strategic objectives:
- How will you know when you have achieved your goal?
- What are the milestones on the path to that goal?
- How should you prioritize these milestones?
We have learned that your organization is a living thing. You can fine tune as you go. How can we help?