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Old Dominion University

University Policy

2010 Use of the University Brand for Communication and Marketing

Responsible Oversight Executive: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Date of Current Revision or Creation: October 1, 2020
  1. Purpose

    The purpose of this policy is to brand standards, which include requirements and guidelines for the use of the Old Dominion University brand for communications and marketing.

  2. Authority

    Code of Virginia Section 23.1-1301, as amended, grants authority to the Board of Visitors to make rules and policies concerning the institution. Section 6.01(a)(6) of the Board of Visitors Bylaws grants authority to the President to implement the policies and procedures of the Board relating to University operations.

  3. Definitions

    Brand - The distinctive identity that differentiates Old Dominion University's unique competitive advantages and core values from others in the marketplace. The sum of every exposure, interaction, opinion and story shape internal and external audiences' perception of Old Dominion University.

    Brand Book - A brand standards guide for communications and marketing in all mediums (including, but not limited to, print, digital/web and merchandise.)

    Brand Standards - A set of requirements and guidelines for the logos, tone, typography, colors, visual elements, photography and videography considerations developed by the University to establish consistency and coordination when representing the University's brand. These standards project a strong institutional image that the public can easily recognize as Old Dominion University, its constituent parts and its activities.

    Communication Toolkit - The resource for the ODU Brand Book, identity standards, color palette, fonts and templates.

    Editorial Guidelines - The guidelines for written communications, to maintain a consistent standard and common vocabulary that support the University's professional image.

    Identity Standards - Logo and signature usage standards as specified on the University Logo & Signature Usage Standards website.

    Logo - A graphic mark or emblem commonly used to aid and promote instant public recognition. Logos are either purely graphic (symbols/icons) or are composed of the name of the organization (a logotype or word mark).

  4. Scope

    This policy applies to all employees, students, employees of affiliated organizations who are paid through the University, and vendors producing communications and marketing materials that represent Old Dominion University or display the University logo and/or word mark. Employees include all staff, administrators, faculty, full- or part-time, and classified or non-classified persons who are paid by the University. Students include all persons admitted to the University who have not completed a program of study for which they were enrolled; student status continues whether or not the University's programs are in session. Affiliated organizations are separate entities that exist for the benefit of the University through and operating agreement and include the Foundations, the Community Development Corporation, and the Alumni Association.

  5. Policy Statement

    All members of the University community and its affiliates are required to follow the University's brand standards and display the University logo for printed or audiovisual materials that are produced for official University business purposes. Furthermore, use of the University logo for presentations and other publications is encouraged.

    The University's brand identity program specifies design style, images, color palette, typography, editorial guidelines, and graphic guidelines (the brand presentation) to create a distinct look and tone in publications, presentations, advertising, signage, web pages and other materials that represent the University.

    The University logo communicates the identity of Old Dominion University to the public. The success of the University's brand identity program depends on public awareness of the brand logo and the amount of brand exposure.

  6. Procedures

    A Communication Toolkit in support of the University's brand standards is available on the Office of Strategic Communication & Marketing website and must be used when developing communications and marketing materials. Approval must be obtained from the Office of Strategic Communication & Marketing for all communications and marketing materials for external audiences. These materials include, but are not limited to, advertising, signage, social media, presentations, printed publications (ex: brochures, magazines, annual reports, event programs, postcards), promotional products or merchandise, recruitment materials for students, alumni and faculty/staff videos, and web pages.

    Staff in the Office of Strategic Communication & Marketing are available to assist with the following services upon request:

    • Design and review of print projects
    • Marketing strategy
    • Design, review and implementation of advertisements
    • Design and review of website and/or social media projects
    • Photography
    • Videography
    • Public relations strategy
    • Press events
    • Media Training

    Use of the University's trademark on internal promotional merchandise and resalable merchandise must be in compliance with University Policy 2300, Trademark Licensing Program. Further information may be found on the University's Licensing Program website.

  7. Records Retention

    Applicable records must be retained and then destroyed in accordance with the Commonwealth's Records Retention Schedules

  8. Responsible Officer

    Assistant Vice President for Strategic Communication & Marketing

  9. Related Information

    Board of Visitors Policy 1003 - The University's Name and Identification

Policy History

Policy Formulation Committee (PFC) & Responsible Officer Approval to Proceed:

Responsible Officer


Policy Review Committee (PRC) Approval to Proceed:

/s/ Donna W. Meeks
Chair, Policy Review Committee (PRC)
September 24, 2019

Executive Policy Review Committee (EPRC) Approval to Proceed:

Responsible Oversight Executive


University Counsel Approval to Proceed:

University Counsel


Presidential Approval:

/s/ John R. Broderick
October 1, 2020

Previous Revisions

December 1, 1988; August 26, 2008; July 11, 2011; October 1, 2020

Scheduled Review Date

October 1, 2025

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