NAIS Branding 201: St. Marks Stops Talking and Starts Listening

NAIS publishes part 2 of special series written by EdwardCo’s Maria Kadison

The National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS)’s Independent School Magazine Blog published part 2 of “Pivoting from Mission to Brand to Growth.” The three-part blog series is written by EdwardsCo president and CEO Maria Kadison.

Read Part 2: How One School Stopped Talking and Started Listening

By reading this important series, independent schools can learn how to align their mission and brand to grow enrollment.

Part one of the series focused on the important conceptual differences between a school’s mission and brand.

Now in Part two, the focus shifts to a process schools can follow to understand the real drivers of school preference among prospective families.

“How One School Stopped Talking and Started Listening,” illustrates the process through the work EdwardsCo did with St. Mark’s School in Southborough, Massachusetts, to develop a new brand positioning statement.

Chuck Greene, director of communications and marketing at St. Mark’s, explained why the well-endowed school decided to develop a brand strategy: “Branding, when done well, draws in the people for whom your product is perfect and sends away the people for whom it is a waste of their time.”

Chuck saw a significant advantage in conducting market research among prospective families.  From his standpoint,  having a strong brand strategy can help a school successfully attract more best-fit families,

“It really behooved us to understand what are the real motivations behind a family as they’re searching for the ideal educational experience for their student….And what are the intersections between what we can offer as a school and their needs and desires?”

Maria also talked with Chuck for a special edition of the EdwardsCo Insights podcast.  In his interview, Chuck focused on why and how the school approached identifying a brand strategy.

Listen to the podcast


To NAIS for the opportunity to provide our perspectives on brand strategy with your readers.

And to Chuck Greene at St. Mark’s School for taking the time to share your valuable insights with your colleagues.


Read our St. Mark’s case study or find more insights to drive recruitment, retention, and revenue growth at Resources Central.


Posted on November 22, 2016 in Brand Strategy, Independent Schools, Recruiting

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