VUT New Brand Launch

Meet the new VUT – The new VUT brand identity

The new VUT Brand Mark was approved by the Administrator and Management Committee on 02 March 2021, and supported by the newly installed VUT Council on 17 September 2021.

OUR Brand Position is to be an African University that leads in Innovative Knowledge and Technology Education.  Inspire . Innovative . Action.

The NEW VUT is inspired by a weave which is aesthetically and visually linked to ‘Africa’.  It resembles a connective narrative of interlinked journeys, stories and people. It is furthermore inspired by the Vaal River, as a source of life.  The woven shield represents – Strength, collaboration and academia.  Whereas the water waves represent location, energy, respect and life.

The icon breakdown is unique as the V represents the word Vaal, and indicates the graduation hood as a symbol of achievement.  The U represents the word University and the Centre is filled with water waves that signify a source of life and our location. The woven shield represents – Strength, collaboration and academia.  Whereas the water waves represent location, energy, respect and life.

The VUT Brand Identity consists of SEVEN Brand Marks

Academic Brand Mark

It is  the purest form of the VUT brand.  The blue waves in the center represent the Vaal River and the location of the University, whereas the gold represents academic excellence, achievement, success and wealth.  The academic brand is only used in academic ceremonies and by the office of the Vice-Chancellor.

Marketing Brand Mark

Communicates the brand voice as a person, which is Curious. Ambitious and Flexible. Sapphire represents integrity, knowledge, power and seriousness and Dandelion represents warmth and optimism.

Faculty Brand Marks

Are differentiated by the colors of the V that symbolizes the faculty colour hood during graduations.
Faculty of Applied & Computer Sciences Buttercup Yellow represents:
Happiness & Joy.

Faculty Brand Marks

Faculty of Engineering & Technology Beatle Green represents:
Nature, Environment, Health & Renewal.

Faculty Brand Marks

Faculty of Human Sciences Union Jack Red represents:
Energy, Passion & Heat.

Faculty Brand Marks

Faculty of Management Sciences Adonis Blue represents:
Harmony, Unity & Truth

Culture Mark – Mavuti Brand Mark

This is the existing Mavuti fingerprint, modified and molded in a U-shape, symbolizing the uniqueness of students at VUT.

Departmental Brand Marks

VUT  embraces a Monolithic Brand Architecture until such time that a strong brand presence is established in the market.  Monolithic Architecture, or branded house, is characterized by a strong, single master brand. Brand extensions use the master brand’s identity with descriptors.  This means that there will only be ONE master brand with faculties,  departments and structures as descriptors, under one umbrella. As of 1 October 2021, no additional departmental, faculty, club or society logos or slogans will be permitted. The blue identity will be used by all, except for Alumni, that will use the gold as part of their academic achievement at VUT.

WHY DID VUT REBRAND?

In 2004, as part of the transformation of the higher education sector, institutions were reduced from 36 to 23 through mergers and incorporations.  The then Vaal Triangle Technikon did not merge and was therefore not granted the opportunity to rebrand through the merger process.  Although we acquired the status of a university, we were still trapped in the former Vaal Triangle Technikon corporate identity in terms of our logo, slogan, colours and Vaal Tech mentality.

WHAT WAS THE REBRANDING COST?

Cost are kept to minimum as most of the rebranding involves the change of digital templates like the website, social media headers, stationary templates etc.  The only costly exercise is to change all the signage and tangible applications where the old logo needs to be replaced with the new brand bark.  The budget of the office of the Marketing & Brand Manager will be used for this exercise which will be planned and execute over a two-year period, due to budget constraints.  Signage will be prioritized in stages and changed accordingly.  We would have preferred an overnight visual change of all signs, but unfortunately it will not be possible.  Rebranding is a process and we do not want to compromise the quality of our visual application of our new brand.

In terms of clothing items and promotional items, the budget of the Public Relations Practitioner will be used to supply merchandise with the new brand mark and can be bought at the Mavuti Shop.

WHY LAUNCH A NEW BRAND DURING COVID 19

The process to rebrand VUT commenced in 2016 predating COVID-19. The fact that the brand launch coincides with the pandemic is completely unforeseen.

In 2018, the Management Committee approved an Integrated Marketing and Communication Strategy for VUT that determined the way forward in terms of its recommendations.

WHAT WAS THE PROCESS THAT LED TO THE CHANGE AND WHO WAS CONSULTED?

During a two-year Brand Audit conducted in 2016 – 2018, our customers reported that “VUT is seriously outdated and in need of a new brand and corporate identity”.  Extensive research amongst internal and external stakeholders determined the way forward for VUT in terms of its unique brand direction.

On 2 March 2018, during an SRC Brand Audit Workshop, the Brand Audit recommendations were presented to the 2018 SRC who provided the mandate to commence with the voting process.

During the COME VOTE Campaign, staff and students made history by establishing the new position for VUT within the higher education landscape that marked the beginning of crafting a unique new brand for VUT.  On 7 May 2018, VUT Management and SRC announced the Winning Brand Direction.  In 2020 staff and students voted for the new VUT tagline, and the winning tagline was announced on 04 December 2020.

WHAT DOES THE #CHANGEVUT CAMPAIGN MEAN AND HOW DOES IT ADD VALUE TO THE REBRANDING? WHY CHANGE?

Driven by the 2016 Brand Audit outcome, our stakeholders reported that we are not relevant anymore in terms of what we look like, and who we say we are.  #changevut serve as the bridge between the COME VOTE campaign and the rebranding of VUT.

 

Change can mean many things to many people as it is interpreted and experienced differently based on your understanding of why we need to ‘change VUT’.  In any relationship, as soon as there is disconnect, it requires a 360-degree positive spin in a new direction.

 

The #changevut campaign is a call to internal stakeholders to join the stage and change what matters to you the most.

 

  • change the way we serve our clients, and improve customer services
  • change the way we think and walk and talk on campus (behavior) – drop the Vaal Tech mentality, stop rumors, be bold about our successes and embrace our status as a University of Technology,
  • change culture on campus – lets ACT OUT our values
  • change the way we conduct business, e.g. zero tolerance on corruption;
  • change our attitude towards our responsibilities at work and how you fit into the value chain;
  • Ultimately, #changevut must bring about a renewed sense of belonging, pride and brand loyalty.

 

Internal stakeholders will be CHANGE AGENTS” as they will be part of the process from the beginning.

 

AIM:

To educate VUT internal stakeholders as to what the word ‘VUT Brand’ means and what the essence of the VUT Brand is.

The aim is to create a 360-degree positive spin on all aspects at VUT (student life, communication, academia, etc.) which will deliver extra ordinary results.  #changevut must bring about a renewed sense of belonging, pride and brand loyalty.  Internal stakeholders will be CHANGE AGENTS” as they will be part of the process from the beginning.  The corporate colours (blue and red), the slogan – Your world to a better future, and the classic logo was not incorporated in the #changevut campaign as it will change when we rebrand.  We aimed at neutralizing the visual aspects of the old brand and prepared a blank page and clean slate for the new Brand Identity of VUT.  Therefore, the campaign was  black and white.

The design elements: the spiral and dots symbolized that change is was taking place which will affect VUT internally as well as spread externally.

It cannot be “business as usual” yet we claim that the new brand was born through change. Behavior, culture, and the way we think, conduct ourselves as Brand Ambassadors and serve our customers should bring about change. The Administration period of 2019 to 2021 was a serious effort in making #changevut REAL.  Burning issues of governance, supply chain management and human resources were tackled at root and branch and extensively reported on through the IMBIZO recording which was broadcasted .

WHO DESIGNED THE NEW VUT BRAND MARK?

After extensive research of the Brand Audit outcome and recommendations and continued engagement with stakeholders, Brand Leadership Group proposed the 3 possible taglines and designed the seven unique brand marks for VUT which consist of an Academic, Marketing, 4 Faculty brand marks and a Culture mark known as the Mavuti mark.

WHAT HAPPENS TO ALL THE EXISTING DEPARTMENTAL AND STRUCTURE LOGOS AND SLOGANS?

The VUT brand adopted a Monolithic Brand Architecture until a strong brand presence is established in the market.

Monolithic architecture (or branded house) is characterized by a strong, single master brand. Brand extensions use the parent’s identity with descriptors.  This means that there will only be ONE master brand with faculties and departments under one umbrella. As of 1 October 2021, no additional departmental, faculty, club or society logos or slogans will be allowed. Everybody will use the blue identity except for Alumni and Convocation that will use the gold as part of their academic achievement at VUT.

IS THE VAAL UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY NAME CHANGING?

The name of the university will not change and will remain the Vaal University of Technology (VUT) under the Amendment of section 20 of Act 101 of 1997 of the Higher Education Act, 1997 (Act No. 101 of 1997) published in the Government Gazette No 23559 of 26 June 2002.

HOW WAS THE NEW VUT TAGLINE CHOSEN AND WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

On 24 November 2020, during a Strategic Rebranding Workshop to the SRC and student structures, the 3 possible taglines were presented and reduced to 2 possible taglines.  A voting campaign took place online where staff and students voted for their preferred tagline.  The winning tagline was officially announced on 04 December 2020.

Inspiring thought. Shaping talent.

Rational

To be an African University that leads in innovative knowledge and technology education, is about

attracting the type of graduates who will use our institute to turn their potential into possibilities.

Innovative knowledge and leading in tech education means that we give our graduates the cutting

edge in tuition and facilities.

This is how we shape talent which in turn can shape the world and our future. Shaping talent does not

mean that every student has extraordinary talent, it is a promise of an end-state or an outcome. It is a

possibility that is being expressed. The line shaping talent is in the future and speaks of the future. A

mind today, will and can become talent tomorrow in the same way someone talented today goes

further tomorrow.

WHAT DOES THE MAVUTI BRAND MARK MEANS?

The VUT Culture Brand Mark is the Mavuti mark, that consists of a fingerprint that is modified and molded in a U-shape.. It symbolizes individualism and uniqueness of each VUT student within the VUT family, which will leave a positive mark by contributing to the betterment of fellow students and the community at large.

HOW DO WE PROTECT THE NEW VUT BRAND MARK AGAINST COPY RIGHT?

An application to register the VUT brand marks was submitted and are underway which may take approximately 18 months to complete.  Therefore, the TM (trademark) is found next to each brand mark, to provide notice to potential infringers that common law rights in the mark are claimed.  This will ensure that no person(s) can copy the unique VUT brand marks.

WHEN IS THE OFFICIAL LAUNCH OF THE NEW VUT BRAND MARKS, AND WHEN CAN I START IMPLEMENTING IT?

The official switch from the old to the new internally is 01 October 2021. #VUTBRANDSWITCH

WHEN IS THE OFFICIAL LAUNCH OF THE NEW VUT BRAND MARKS, AND WHEN CAN I START IMPLEMENTING IT?

How will I know if I am complying with the new VUT brand when I want to use it?

HOW WILL I KNOW IF I AM COMPLYING WITH THE NEW VUT BRAND WHEN I WANT TO USE IT?

The BRAND STYLE GUIDE will be your BRAND BIBLE per sé.  It is available from 01 October 2021 as an e-book on the VUT website, from which all templates can be retrieved and will be updated as the VUT brand evolves. It is important that you are familiar with the Brand & Corporate Identity Policy that is effective from the same date.  Rebranding is a process that requires all internal stakeholder to have a clear understanding of who the NEW VUT is, what we look like and what we sound like. To assist you in your understanding is an internal network we call: Brand’dors.  Brand’dors are exactly what the name says. They signify a door that opens up to the full understanding and knowledge of the essence of the new VUT brand, so you don’t have to feel lost. They are a highly trained network of volunteers within each department, unit, faculty and structure across the VUT community who is passionate about protecting the VUT Brand, corporate identity and image.  Being a VUT Brand’dor is not only about greater brand protection, it’s also about acting in a responsible and ethical way when promoting brand understanding internally.

HOW WILL STUDENTS BE INVOLVED AND INFORMED OF THE NEW VUT BRAND?

September 2021 marked the introduction to staff and students FIRST before we announce to the public, as our strategy is an inside-out approach.  #BRANDCHANNELL was created on VUT social media platforms through which students will receive information about the new VUT brand identity.  Various competitions will be launch throughout 2021 and 2022 to ensure a clear understanding of who the new VUT is, what we look like and what we sound like.

HOW WILL THE NEW BRAND MARK BE USED ON CLOTHING APPAREL AND MARKETING ITEMS?

The Brand Style Guide and Brand & Corporate Identity is very clear on the application. In order to ensure brand compliance and standardization of communications and message content in respect of the visual representation of the VUT Brand and the Brand Style Guide guidelines, all VUT clothing, promotional and marketing items, in any of its forms, MUST be ordered through the Mavuti Shop.  The centralization will ensure VUT brand compliance and quality management.

HOW WILL I BE KEPT INFORM OF ANY DEVELOPMENTS REGARDING THE NEW VUT BRAND?

As the VUT Brand Identity evolves, the Brand Style Guide will be updated on the VUT website and staff, students and the broader VUT community will be informed via various communication channels such as print, e-mail and VUT social media platforms.  Follow the #BRANDCHANNEL to stay informed.

WHERE CAN I BUY OR ORDER BRANDED ITEMS WITH THE VUT NEW BRAND?

From 01 October 2021, #VUTBRANDSWITCH, all clothing and promotional items must be ordered through the Mavuti Shop, building AN008.

HOW WILL SERVICE PROVIDERS BE INFORMED AND COMPLY?

During a Service Provider Workshop in October 2021, suppliers on the SCM Suppliers Database will be informed of the new VUT Brand Identity, the Brand & Corporate Identity Policy and a Trademark Agreement will be signed with each supplier that uses the VUT brand marks.  On an annual basis the list of the SCM Suppliers Database will be requested to ensure compliance to the trademark agreement.

HOW WILL I BE KEPT INFORM OF ANY DEVELOPMENTS REGARDING THE NEW VUT BRAND?

As the VUT Brand Identity evolves, the Brand Style Guide will be updated on the VUT website and staff, students and the broader VUT community will be informed via various communication channels such as print, e-mail and VUT social media platforms.

INTERNAL BRAND LAUNCH VIDEO (2021) (20minutes)

The VUT Brand Story from 1966-2021

 

COME VOTE CAMPAIGN (2018) (3:30 minutes)

“brand direction revealed in 2018.”

 

50th ANNIVERSARY (1966 – 2016) (7 Minutes)

“brand direction revealed in 2018.”

 

Brand Style Guide & 50th Anniversary Book (1966 – 2016)

The Brand Style Guide consist of downloadable templates for stationary, PowerPoint presentations and the official digital signature.

The Brand Style Guide is only accessible to VUT staff on the intranet. Click the below Brand Style Guide button to access the guide. You will be promoted with a login screen. Please fill in your staff email address and password to login.


The 50th Anniversary book is accessible to the general public. Click the below 50th Anniversary button to access the book. You will be promoted with a login screen. Please fill in your email address and optionally your company name and click submit to view the book.

Human Resource Department

Human Resource Department

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