Bound Volume Number
Honors Capstone Project
Date of Submission
Prof. Kevin O'Neill
branding, social media, Hillel, Syracuse University
Capstone Prize Winner
Won Capstone Funding
Advertising and Promotion Management
My rebranding of Hillel at Syracuse University was a multi-step process. First, I had to understand what rebranding truly meant – what made a successful rebranding, what to avoid during a rebranding, etc. I gained this critical knowledge by reflecting on my education as an advertising major and consulting credible online sources on the topic. The next step was to gain a deeper understanding of my client, Hillel at Syracuse University. I again drew insights from my own experience as a student highly involved in the organization, and I also learned critical information from resources provided to me by Brian Small, Executive Director of Hillel at Syracuse University.
I learned that Hillel at Syracuse University was doing pretty well overall, but there was much improvement to be made regarding the organization’s communication channels. These communication channels are paramount to the organization’s success because they are the channels that Hillel at Syracuse University’s audience accesses for information about the organization. The website and social media are two of the most important sources of information for the brand’s audience, and both needed a lot of work.
The website had three key issues: outdated content, visually displeasing graphics, and a confusing navigation bar. To fix the first problem, I combed through the website page-by-page and updated any old content, fixed any grammatical errors, and relinked any broken hyperlinks. As for the visually displeasing graphics, I redesigned them to be more modern looking and inviting. Finally, I reorganized the entire website structure to be more user-friendly and intuitive in navigation. Now, when people visit the Hillel at Syracuse University website, they are seeing improved graphics, up to date content, and a more easily navigable interface.
Hillel at Syracuse University had fairly active social media pages before I began my capstone project, but they were not garnering much engagement (i.e. likes, comments, shares, etc.) with their posts. They lacked a clear brand voice and consistent messaging themes. Their strong brand purpose, to make Judaism relevant to students and enable them to have Jewish experiences, was not shining through their posts. I revamped the Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts and implemented three key campaigns: #JewishHoliday, #MitzvahMonday, and #MakeJudaismRelevant. These posts brought Judaism into more relevant terms for the Hillel at Syracuse University audience and encouraged conversation between the brand and the audience.
Finally, no redesign is complete without a new logo. I designed twelve completely new logos for the organization. They are currently under review by Hille at Syracuse University’s Board of Governors and, upon improval, could be implemented as early as Fall 2015.
This work was both time and energy-intensive, but it was a pleasure to work with an organization as wonderful as Hillel at Syracuse University
Bunis, Marisa, "Rebranding Hillel at Syracuse University" (2015). Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects. 878.
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