Delivering American University's news and views since 1925. | Saturday, February 23, 2019

So what does it really cost?

What AU has spent on the wonk campaign

$225,000: Phase I - Research and Strategy

Baseline study by SimpsonScarborough market research company with 12 different audiences to set baseline and identify positioning (survey to be repeated three to five years from now among the same audiences)

$100,000: Creative Development: Design, testing, protection, production and campus introduction

Creative work not done by AU employees and students:

An additional copywriter

Nate Beeler commissioned for drawing cartoons related to the campaign and will continue to draw a comic strip for each American Magazine issue for the remaining year.

Testing, risk management and legal protection

Creative testing of concept by Bethesda-based company, Shugoll Research

Linguistics study by the company TransPerfect, to examine the term or words that sound like “wonk” in other languages

35 trademark applications for variations of wonks in selected categories (printed materials, educational services, etc.)

URLs in various forms

Implementation, production and campus launch:

Grassroots, viral, digital and social media activities by student teams during the summer

Presentations and events during the summer (including costs for food and equipment for student presentations, luncheons, teas and Celebrate AU)



Luggage tags

Total expenses so far: $325,000

Estimated expenses to come later this fiscal year:

$200,000: Create the 2011 Welcome Center and Experience that integrates the brand messages in the video, presentation, tour and design of the space.

$150,000: Estimated cost for KNOW/WONK in fall graduate student recruitment advertising *

Source: E-mail from Teresa Flannery, executive director of University Marketing and Communications.

* Ads came out in the Aug. 26 issue of the Washington City Paper.

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