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Frequently Asked Questions

I want my project to be unique. Are brand standards optional?

Brand standards are created to assist you in developing strategic marketing materials that reinforce Boise State’s image. The visual impact of any and all materials that include the Boise State mark, logo or symbol have an influence on how people perceive the university. Consistency builds awareness and trust. Most professional designers are trained to create memorable and effective marketing materials while adhering to guidelines. By consistently using the brand standards found here you will properly align your materials with the Boise State identity.

Can the B symbol be used as part of a specialized marketing campaign: B Social, B Proud, B Mobile, etc?

The B symbol, included in the University Signature Mark, is a unique expression of who we are. The longterm strategy for the B symbol is designed to maintain brand integrity and uphold consistency. This means that the B symbol is not to be used as the word “be,” but to be kept as a logo.

Can I use the B symbol without the Wordmark?

No, the B stands as an integral part of the University Signature Mark and cannot be altered or modified to fit a design. The B symbol may not be used on its own, without approval from the Brand Committee (brand@boisestate.edu). Use may be permitted on merchandise. If a department wishes to create its own customized merchandise, please contact the Office of Trademark Licensing (licensing@boisestate.edu).

Can I still use existing materials if they don’t comply with the brand standards listed here?

All new communication, marketing or advertising projects must reflect the brand standards. However, we encourage staff and faculty to continue using existing materials (business cards, letterhead, etc.) until their supplies are depleted. Replenish new supplies with materials that include the new brand identity.

Where do I find the new University Signature Mark?

The University Signature Mark may be downloaded from the download page at this link.  Additional file formats, and Companion Logos will continue to be added to this section, as well as other useful graphic files. If there is something in particular that you are looking for and is not in the download section, please email us at brand@boisestate.edu.

Where do I find the Boise State font package?

Garamond is the choice for body text in letters and correspondence and most computers already have that font. Garamond is Boise State’s official serif typeface. If Garamond is not available, Times may be used for large blocks of copy. Oswald and Lato are used for web. See Webguide to download web fonts. Gotham is the official sans serif type recommended for marketing and signage projects. The Gotham I  package can be purchased.  Please submit your request to brand@boisestate.edu.

Can I fill some of the space around the B Symbol with design elements?

No. To ensure the B symbol is always highly visible and to separate it from its surroundings, the area of isolation (or minimum required clear space) surrounding the B Symbol should be half the height of the symbol on all sides. No other graphic elements should be added in this space.

Our color palette is limiting. Can I use other colors?

Our school colors are blue and orange and have been since 1932. Using blue and orange is very important in establishing a visual identity and aligning your project with the Boise State brand. Select color options are available to add depth and design to your projects. Complementary colors may be used in design layouts, but blue and orange should always be the dominant colors on the page. If the official colors are not appropriate for your project, the secondary color palette is also available.

What is going to happen to our existing supply of letterhead, stationery, business cards, brochures, etc.?

The university went through a transitional phase-out of materials bearing the old university logo, ending in September, 2013. Materials bearing the “diamond logo” should have been phased out in that time period. The new University Signature Mark should be used in all promotional and business materials. If you still have materials bearing the old university logo, please recycle them. Orders for new or updated business cards and stationery will be re-designed to meet the new branding standards.

Is there additional budget for the replacement of materials?

The transitional phase-out is intended to minimize costs and for supplies to be replaced as they are needed. For major department items, such as permanent signage, that need to be replaced, you may need to consider these when planning for financial year 2013-14 or contact us with concerns (brand@boisestate.edu).

How do I order new business cards or letterhead?

To ensure consistency, University Printing and Graphic Services produces all Boise State business cards and letterhead from approved templates.

Why can’t I use the expression BSU to refer to Boise State?

Boise State University is on the move and significant steps and achievements have been made to enhance our unique brand and academic identity on a global scale. While there was a time in our school’s history when BSU was used as a reference to Boise State, we now have reached a place in our identity and branding efforts where we must be extremely clear about who we are and what Boise State stands for. There are many, many other entities that can be described as BSU (do a Google search and you’ll see what we mean), but there is only one Boise State University.

Can I still wear or use Bronco-inspired products with the old logos?

We are proud of our history and the evolution of Boise State’s academic and athletic logos represents traditions from past eras. The new University Signature Mark reflects the strength and character of the university going forward and will be used in any and all promotion and marketing on behalf of the university, but employees, students, friends and fans of the university can certainly continue to proudly use their existing Bronco products.

What do I need to do to become a Boise State brand ambassador?

You’ll hear this expression a lot as we build awareness on campus for our unified brand identity. We welcome involvement by students, faculty, staff, and administrators. “Brand Ambassadors” help positively impact the perception of Boise State. Being a brand ambassador means being someone who recognizes the value of supporting and protecting the university’s brand (reputation and identity) at every opportunity from big projects such as messaging on a Boise State billboard to smaller elements, such as the way an email signature is displayed. It means your marketing and communication projects adhere to the Brand Standards found here and reflect the integrity of what it means to be a Bronco and what it means to be a part of the Boise State community.

How can I be sure my project reflects Brand Standards?

If in doubt, the Office of Communications and Marketing (communications@boisestate.edu) or Printing and Graphic Services (printing@boisestate.edu) can review your marketing and promotion materials or presentations to ensure they follow brand standards and to check for consistent image quality.

Can I create a new logo or a variant on the University logo for my department?

No new logos or variations of the University Signature Mark are permitted. One of the main goals of the Brand Standards is to enhance the profile of the University by having a consistent visual representation of our schools/colleges, departments, administrative units and research centers and institutes. The University Signature Mark has been designed to allow for all units to be co-branded with the main university visual identity by using either the University Signature Mark or the respective unit’s Companion Logo.

Where can I get merchandise and giveaways with the new University logo?

Merchandise with the revised B logo is available at the University Bronco Shop. All licensed vendors have the new mark as well.

How do I place the University Signature Mark in a Microsoft Word document?

Download the University Signature Mark from the download page. It is recommended that you use high resolution JPEG files. If you are unable to convert the file from the download page, contact brand@boisestate.edu who can provide you with the appropriate jpg file. You may have to scale the logo to the desired size. Do not use this logo to create your own electronic stationery. All stationery, including electronic letterhead, should be ordered through Printing and Graphics.

Why can’t I just recreate the University logo or my own department logo? Why do I have to get the proper file from the official download section or from Printing and Graphics?

Recreating the logo will not reproduce the logo accurately. The logo is created from characters designed specifically for Boise State, using a specific font in the Gotham font family. The characters have specific spatial relationships and alignment. Simply selecting a similar font, eyeballing it and then reproducing it will invariably produce differences that may be minor, but will detract from the design and its branding capability. Recreating the logo also takes time that might be used more productively. Printing and Graphics will be able to, as of mid-December 2012, create your Companion Logo. Unlike current practice, there will be no charge for Printing and Graphics to create your Companion Logo prior to June 30, 2013. Thereafter, there may be a nominal charge for creating a Companion Logo, as there is currently.

How do I fit all the information I need on a business card?

A business card is designed to be a point of contact, not a marketing piece. Consider carefully how much information really needs to be on the card. In special circumstances that may call for more than one logo or for additional information, please email brand@boisestate.edu for consideration of an exemption to the Boise State Brand Standards. More information on business card information can be found here.

May I change the letterhead design?

The layout of the letterhead as described in the Boise State Brand Standards may not be redesigned. If you feel that you have special circumstances that may call for a redesign, please email brand@boisestate.edu for consideration of an exemption.

Are there standards for signage?

Yes, and they can be found at this link or in the left hand navigational bar under Print Guidelines / Signage. If you need a sign made for either the interior or exterior of a building, you will need to get approval from Architectural and Engineering Services. Do not order signage without checking with Campus Planning and Design. There are also guidelines that apply to temporary signage too. The University Sign Shop can assist with design and production.

I want to embroider our Companion Mark onto shirts but the logo is so long.

For uniforms and staff wear a shortened Companion Mark may be available.  Please contact brand@boisestate.edu to discuss your needs and they will help work with you and the licensed vendor who is undertaking the embroidery.   If necessary, the secondary line of the Companion Mark (the department identifier) may be increased by 2pts., if needed for that purpose.

I have questions and want to learn more about the Boise State brand. How can I get assistance?

We are happy to help. Contact brand@boisestate.edu for questions, to offer feedback on Brand Standards or to schedule a meeting. The Brand Committee is available to meet personally with Boise State staff or faculty to present the Boise State branding story. We will schedule a presentation at your convenience to discuss the process of unifying our identity in 2013 and beyond.