Logos, Branding and Messaging

Brands are everywhere, bombarding us like a Star Wars asteroid shower.  Many deflect or fall flat because they’re all sizzle and no steak.  Like TransCast Cable (fictional) branding “We Care About YOU, our customer”, whilst raising rates and propagating deceptive marketing schemes.  Thankfully, there are names in the parthenon of brands, whose companies actually deliver or exceed, that which they tout.  The Result?  Customer Loyalty to the Brand Entity and it’s ideals.  If there’s anything that the Mat Dude has learned in Branding, its the importance of   


  1. Have a Message.
  2. Communicate your message in an interesting way and in interesting places.
  3. Live by your message. Hypocrisy is the Brand-Slayer.


On first brush, schools would not appear to us, as a marketplace to be painted up from the palette of visual branding.  But on further appreciation of what schools do, there is a place for encapsulating an idea or value, into a concise picture, graphic or words.  When I was in high school, we were Panthers; and I’m a proud Panther today.  Fellow Panthers know what I’m talkin’ about !  Our school’s ideals were infused into this sleek, shorthaired, feline animal and apparently, I still relate with pride.


Whereas Companies mostly brand to sell stuff, Schools brand to create buy-in of ideas and standards.  More familiar monikers for School Branding are the more well known, Culture and Spirit, kind of the Yin and Yang of School Branding.  Spirit is the “rah-rah” that motivates us to move and to change.  “First and Ten, Let’s Do It Again.” Spirit is about “Make the Effort !”.  Culture is a force, more about ideals to reflect upon and consider or to measure one’s actions against.  Like, If I do this, am I not adhering to the Code.  Culture both encourages good behavior and can also discourage undesirable behavior. Culture is the fabric that weaves together a school’s community, and good values are the thread.


Every school has its own story and unique history. Even a new school has a story, it just hasn’t fully unfolded yet.  School Administrators are the story directors, who inspire learning from the story.  Visual Branding is a great modality for emphasizing values and goals while inspiring action .


About the author

Mark Gross has been in Floor Matting (is that even a thing?) for over 30 years.  

Mark is to Floor Mats, what Bubba is to Shrimp, in the movie Forest Gump—he definitely knows his mats !

After years in the industry, Mark had the idea of  putting photographic images on large floor mats and invented the ImageMat and ImageFloorproducts in 2004.  This led to working with some of the biggest brands in the world including Nintendo, Macy’s and Microsoft. Working with these Brand Companies to communicate marketing messages on the store floor, was a “grounding” experience for Mark.  These days, Mark is focused on working with Schools across the U.S. and Canada, providing floor safety and school messaging with logo floor mats.  Schools are way more fun to work with .

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