Here are some frequently asked questions with respect to web branding at Tufts.
Who are the Web Branding Guidelines designed for?
The Tufts University Web Branding Guidelines were developed to support a cohesive look and feel for all official Tufts University websites, including all school, division, department and administrative office sites. The guidelines do not apply to personal web pages or sites, such as individual student, faculty and class sites. However, owners of websites for Tufts faculty, classes or student organizations are encouraged to use these guidelines to help promote a consistent visual identity for the university.
Do I have to follow the Web Branding Guidelines?
Yes. While Tufts University is made up of hundreds of seemingly disparate divisions, departments and organizational units, to the outside world, we are all part of the Tufts family. When people are jumping from site to site at Tufts looking for what they need, they get frustrated having to relearn how a site works if it’s different every time. There is great value to your site visitors if they don’t have to spend time figuring out where your home or contact us links are. Keeping a consistent look and feel across the university makes finding information much easier for your site visitors – and delivering the information they need is the primary goal of a website.
Why are these guidelines important?
These guidelines are a critical tool in achieving a consistent look and feel and user experience across all official Tufts websites. This is important so that all visitors to the Tufts web have a uniform way of navigating through the different sites and can easily find, use and share the information they need. When they come to a Tufts site or move from one site to another, visitors should be able to quickly recognize that they are on a Tufts University website and the transition from one to the next should be as smooth and seamless as possible. This also serves to reinforce Tufts’ visual identity and brand personality across all the schools, divisions and departments that comprise the university.
What is “user experience” and why is it important?
Simply put, user experience (UX) is how a person feels about using a product, service or system. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User_experience for a complete definition. While user experience is always subjective, it is affected by how easy or valuable a product, service or system is to use. If people are expected to learn a new way of navigating through different websites or if the design changes too dramatically from one to the other, they’ll most likely have a less than optimal experience using the website. Over time, this could result in a negative perception of the brand. These guidelines strive to provide consistency in the visual design of all official Tufts websites so that users have a positive experience of Tufts.
Why does the Tufts University homepage not use the colors defined in the Web Branding Guidelines?
The colors defined in the Web Branding Guidelines are meant to provide a consistent look, feel and user-experience across all the school, division, department and administrative office websites at Tufts. They do not attempt to duplicate the Tufts homepage, which is intended as a unique gateway into the entire Tufts web. However, the Tufts logo and fonts used on the homepage are consistent with those provided for use by schools, divisions, departments and administrative offices at the university.
I want to put Jumbo on my website. Where can I get the graphics for that?
The Jumbo logo can only be used on official athletic documents and sites. It is not available for download.
Where can I download the Tufts logo?
Logos for use on official Tufts websites are available for download here.
Before using the Tufts logo/wordmark, make sure you are familiar with its proper uses and frequent misuse.
I want to download the Tufts seal. Where can I get it?
Use of the official Tufts seal is limited to formal documents, i.e., on diplomas or other official administrative communications originating from the President’s Office or the Board of Trustees. The seal may also be used for official ceremonial functions and appear on approved plaques, flags, or furniture and is not available for download.
The official Tufts seal should never be used on print or web marketing materials in lieu of the Tufts logo.
What colors can I use on my website?
The official Tufts colors are a dark brown and a sky blue as prescribed by the Pantone color specification system (or the Pantone Matching System of “PMS” numbers). They are Brown PMS 4625 or HEX 361500 and Blue PMS 279 or HEX 6699CC. Other browns and blues should be avoided.
The full color chart for suggested complementary colors is available in the Tufts University Visual Identity System, pp. 22-24. If you are not sure about your color choices, please consult a web designer, making sure to provide a copy of the Visual Identity System.
What font should I use on my website?
For your website, you should use the Arial font. It’s universal on nearly all computers throughout the world. Also, as a good rule of thumb, your font size should never be below 10pt (12pt is ideal).
Where do I get the Tufts fonts? I don’t have them on my computer.
You will need to purchase the fonts or contract with a designer who has the fonts. There is no “site license” for the approved Tufts fonts.
We don’t want our site to look like every other site at Tufts. How do we differentiate ourselves but still conform to the visual identity?
Requiring that you follow the Web Branding Guidelines does not mean you have no creative control over the look and feel of your site. If you wish to differentiate your website from other sites that use a Tufts-branded template, you will need to hire a professional web designer who must adhere to the brand guidelines covered in the Tufts Visual Identity System. Contact Digital Communications at email@example.com if you need help finding a web designer. If you know of someone, please be sure to direct him or her to this site and provide a copy of the Tufts Visual Identity System.
Where can I get custom Twitter backgrounds/avatars and Facebook graphics that meet the Tufts visual identity?
Currently we do not offer any templates for Twitter backgrounds/avatars or Facebook graphics. You will need to hire a professional designer or use a service online. In either case, you should provide the designer a copy of the Tufts Visual Identity System and point him or her to this site for more directions. Do not use the university logo or seal as your Twitter background/avatar or Facebook profile image. See the Social Media Style and Branding Guide for more information.