Leap Agency - Innovation in Brand Development

Gold Stevie Award Winner 2018, Click to Enter The 2019 Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards

Name of Organization / Company: Leap Agency, Cremorne, VIC Australia
Category: E01 - E12 - Award for Innovation in Marketing > E01. Award for Innovation in Brand Development

Entry Title: Charles Darwin University, Vocational Education Training


A dual-sector university, Charles Darwin University (CDU) encompasses both Higher Education which offers undergraduate and postgraduate degrees and Vocational Education and Training (VET) offering diplomas, certificates, apprenticeships, traineeships and short courses primarily focused on trades and industry training.

VET needed a unique and competitive positioning which would articulate a sustainable point of difference whilst aligning the school with the new Charles Darwin University brand. The objectives were;

• Identify a distinctive, deliverable and useful branding position
• Develop a distinctive style that communicates this brand position
• Enable VET to stand out in a cluttered and largely homogenous educational sector
• Positively impact on student recruitment activities

Extensive research highlighted very different personality profiles between those who choose to take on a higher education degree and those who seek a more practical trade based qualification (the VET market).

A significant key insight identified students interested in extending their qualifications through a VET course were committed to living in the Northern Territory. They believed they were also there to help build their community and make the Territory environment a better place for themselves and their families. These are proud people, honest and down-to-earth, providing valuable services to keep the Territory going. They do not feel they are ‘less than’ anyone else, especially compared to those who choose to take on a degree. VET students believe their talent is in seeing things differently.

The positioning line of ‘Some people see things others don’t’ was crafted, along with the invitation to ‘come and see more with us’. We sought to develop an innovative, relevant and believable position for VET and consistently communicate this through above and below the line media channels.

CDU were targeting qualified and unqualified trainees, trades industries and small business owners as well as State and Federal Government stakeholders. Like the University itself, this target market is determined to make a difference (large or small), to make things better. They have a strong sense of pride, honesty, stamina and courage.

The decision to study at a particular institution is an important one. For VET students, the emotional dimension is quite straight forward and down to earth. “I love living in the Northern Territory and I want to do meaningful work here for me and my family.” “What I do is valuable.” The more rational side was about getting the best training possible.

The focus of our creative direction was twofold. First of all, it was designed to elevate the stature of vocational education and training within the University and the broader community by demonstrating the breadth of future-focused courses available. Secondly the creative expresses an insight around the unique qualities and attributes of those who work in these vocations. ‘Some people see things others don’t’, was developed.

The 30 second television spots were produced by a global animation team. The production values evoke a sense of commitment to being focused on the future of the NT. The script invites the viewer into exploring the images and their future choices.

The campaign needed to prove itself in many different ways so radio, press, outdoor, television, ambient and online was utilised. It was important to invite the target audience to engage and own the idea of ‘seeing things others don’t’ for themselves. Each piece of communication expresses the creative idea in a unique way. In the series of television executions, rain water morphs from one trade to another over the Territory landscape, while the press images display faces made up of professional tools and implements on red soil reflecting the VET trades on offer. The concept was pushed even further on radio and expressed even more dramatically on the side of the VET school Utes with mechanical animals pouncing forward down the sides of each vehicle.