Since 1959, the Olmsted Foundation and its Olmsted Scholar Program has been the premier leadership program for US military officers. The Scholar program is a fully-funded, two-and-a-half to three-year graduate study and cultural immersion scholarship at a foreign university and taught in a foreign language. Many Scholars call their Olmsted experience “the opportunity of a lifetime.”
Despite over five decades of universally positive Scholar experiences, awareness of the Olmsted Foundation lagged behind other graduate programs like the Rhodes and Marshall Scholarships.
Our mission was to raise overall awareness of the Foundation by strengthening its digital engagement through its website and social media with former, current and future Olmsted Scholars.
We began our process by digging into the Foundation’s history and its founder General George Olmsted before conducting extensive interviews with Foundation leadership and Olmsted Scholars.
Once we understood the Foundation’s values and historical footprint, we crafted a brand tagline that vocalized Olmsted’s core mission: “Shaping Future Leaders.”
We then translated our research information and brand tagline into a new, modern brand mark that honored the Foundation’s history of military leadership while simultaneously looking forward to the Scholars and military leaders to come in the future.
To compliment our brand tagline and brand mark, we designed a new website with a brand voice and visual palette that spoke to the adventure, challenge and potential rewards found in the Olmsted Scholar Program.
We also took command of the Foundation’s social media accounts and engaged Scholars, supporters and the military community with consistent content about the foundation and its Scholars around the world.
Our new Olmsted Foundation website and revamped social media properties were embraced by the Olmsted Foundation’s Board of Directors and Olmsted Scholars alike.
Olmsted’s digital presence received an equally enthusiastic response: In the first six months, it saw an 86% lift in followers and quadrupled engagement rates.