Online U. Gets CL Print Backing

Carmichael Lynch’s first branding effort for Capella University seeks to convince potential students that the online educator is not only a viable forum for getting a degree but an “exciting new way to learn,” the agency said.

A print campaign that breaks this month targets working adults who cannot attend traditional classes, said CL group creative director Brian Kroening.

“We didn’t want to take swings at traditional education because there’s a lot of value in traditional education,” Kroening said. “Our job wasn’t to say we’re a credible university, [but rather] to say there is an exciting new way to learn.”

The series uses a blue-sky motif to suggest the possibilities of Capella’s online format. One ad shows a classroom full of desks reflecting a blue sky with the headline, “Who said adults have to learn in rows?” The tagline: “Education reborn.”

“We suggest that Capella lay stake and claim to the new education paradigm,” Kroening said.

The work will run in periodicals in cluding BusinessWeek, U.S. News & World Report and Fast Company. The Minneapolis shop is also targeting IT professionals with ads in Information Week and Computer World.

CL won the business in June 2000 and has been doing mostly public-relations work. Billings for the effort were not disclosed. Capella spent just over $1 million on advertising last year, according to CMR.