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Delivering a transformational rebrand that helped this historic Oxford University College communicate with a 21st Century voice

The brief

Allegory was appointed by Jesus College, Oxford to produce and deliver a rebrand and strategic communications plan to showcase the College’s ambition and vision ahead of its 450th anniversary in 2021.

At the heart of the campaign was a desire to attract the best students and researchers, broaden its appeal to under-represented students and promote its access programmes.

Our response

We handled all aspects of communications for Jesus College’s new £36m Northgate House development. This cutting-edge facility that combines academic research, teaching facilities and student accommodation to help the University of Oxford achieve its goal of growing postgraduate student numbers. The development also includes a Digital Hub which will provide technological facilities to make the College a world leader in academic research and knowledge exchange.

We worked with our design partner Gareth Wild to create a fresh new look for the College and helped staff to implement it across all on and offline platforms and content.

We crafted detailed Key Messages for a range of audiences and stakeholders, and delivered PR campaigns throughout 2019. The work we did helped to promote the College’s widening participation programme, ground-breaking Fellows’ research, alumni fundraising activities and the overall vision for the upcoming 450th anniversary, presenting a College that is boldly unafraid to lead progress, while embracing its past.

The communications activity included the creation of marketing materials tailored to national and international audiences, in-depth interviews with Fellows, a social media audit and media liaison in Oxford and beyond.

The outcome

We have developed a new, fresh visual identity for Jesus College, based on its values, which looks to the future of the College as a cutting edge facility while respecting its historic traditions.

Following interviews with College Fellows, we created a dedicated section on the College website – a platform to showcase the Fellows’ careers, current work and contribution to Oxford.

Media coverage included an interview with the College Principal in Japanese publication NewsPicks, regular positive coverage regarding the Northgate development in the Oxford Mail, coverage in the vertical media and broadcast coverage of the College’s collaboration with a local school.


See more of our work with universities here, or contact us to explore how Allegory can help your organisation with a campaign like this.

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