Posted July 22, 2021
Members of the Texas A&M AgriLife community,
As you are aware, Texas A&M AgriLife Marketing and Communications has partnered with New City — a web design and brand strategy agency — to help shape the brand identity and digital future of Texas A&M AgriLife. Today, we want to update you on the progress of this multi-year project.
Last year’s audit of the marketing and communications function across the organization, conducted by MGT Consulting, showed that the AgriLife digital presence is one of our greatest areas of weakness. The audit revealed more than 800+ websites under the AgriLife umbrella and noted the major issue being the lack of cohesion and consistency in branding and messaging across the sites. The MGT report highlighted several other key findings: lack of relationships across webpages and websites creating disjointed user experiences; the void of relevant news or current events on websites; broken links; and outdated information.
New City is now working with AgriLife to address these issues. The 2021 scope of work, found on our webpage, details three project phases (we are nearing completion of phase two). Major actions and deliverables within the 2021 project include:
- Internal/external audience research, brand review and technical discovery.
- Creation of the Texas A&M AgriLife brand identity and messaging guidelines.
- Holistic review of all Texas A&M AgriLife-related web properties.
- Design and development of the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service website (expected to initially launch in the spring of 2022).
- Roadmap and plan for future web-related work.
Although the initial project will focus on creating a more seamless digital experience for AgriLife Extension, the overall road mapping project within phase three will help Texas A&M AgriLife determine a path forward for the other agency, departmental and programmatic websites.
Please note, Texas A&M AgriLife Marketing and Communications continues to support web management with content updates (text, images and faculty profile updates) on existing websites, as well as accessibility and software and security updates. The team will not be creating new websites or redesigning existing sites during this time, with one exception: College departmental sites. Texas A&M AgriLife Marketing and Communications has a comprehensive plan to continue the transition of departmental websites into the new, updated College design. This work will happen in parallel with the work of New City. Additional information and expected timelines and prioritization of sites will be shared with the College soon.
The Texas A&M AgriLife brand and digital assessment is an extensive, multi-year project that is long overdue for the organization. We appreciate your full cooperation as we move forward with this important project and will share additional information soon.
Associate Vice Chancellor for Marketing & Communications