- Email Signature
- Email Templates (Constant Contact)
- Enclosure Slips
- Marketing Templates
- Media / News Releases
- Online Store
- Signage and Displays
- Social Media Assets
- Stationery (Cards, Envelopes, Letterhead, Badges)
- Video Assets
Read through the entire brand site to make sure you understand the standards, guidelines and how everything works before creating materials. These assets are only to be used for official N.C. Cooperative Extension communications.
If you have questions or problems as you use these assets, or if you’d like to request additional resources and templates, please contact us.
DOWNLOAD OUR BRAND “CHEAT SHEET”:
Consistency is Key
Consistency is a basic and critical marketing concept that is often neglected. Consistency helps audiences know the materials are ours and attach that trust and value to Extension.
In print, this means consistent color schemes and the same logo, font and design elements. Electronic and broadcast media use consistent audio (theme music), video (opening montages) and design elements; and print media use consistent design marks.
Being a single entity within a group, such as a county center in a statewide network, can present a tug-of-war between consistency and customization. Creating your own ad formats and communications look is like starting at ground zero and building a brand from scratch.
Review our Visual Identity for more info on design standards.
You can include a logo image as part of your email signature. When used this way, the logo should appear at the bottom of the email signature, below all the other elements of the signature.
ADDING THE LOGO TO YOUR EMAIL SIGNATURE (within Google Mail):
- Download the logo image to your desktop computer.
- Go to your email settings, scroll down to the “Signature” section and enter your signature text in the text field. If you already have an email signature, verify that the information is correct.
- To properly format your signature text, use your mouse to select it all, and then use the formatting buttons directly above the text field to select the Sans Serif font at normal size.
- To insert the logo image, position your blinking cursor two lines below the last line of text in your signature. Then click the Insert Image icon (next to the Link icon) and upload the image file from your computer.
- Click Save Changes at the bottom of the page.
EMAIL SIGNATURE GUIDELINES
- Either of the above layouts is acceptable for anyone.
- You can add additional contact info, such as a fax line or mobile phone, if necessary for your clients.
- You should not use embellishments like italics or cursive in any part of your signature (only the “Sans Serif” font at normal size in Gmail settings).
- Don’t resize the logo image, and keep it on a line by itself without any other text or graphics on the same line.
- Refrain from adding any additional graphics/images under your signature, such as social media icons. This also includes quotes.
- Remember that some email clients don’t display images; your contact information should always be in the form of text, not images.
Email Templates (Constant Contact)
Use our custom Constant Contact email templates to facilitate impactful, on-brand digital communications with your clients, partners and target audiences. Be sure to stick with the correct fonts, which include Arial, as well as Gotham and Univers (when available).
- Log in to Constant Contact
- Once logged in, click the gold “Create” button at the top right.
- Choose “Email” as your campaign type.
- Select the “Extension Templates” tab/folder (under the search bar to the right of the Standard Templates tab).
- Pick the template that’s appropriate for your email campaign, then you’re ready to create your message!
Forgot your Constant Contact login info? Visit the Brand Sprokit Access page to find it (your Constant Contact and Brand Spokit accounts use the same login details).
REMINDER: Our county centers should use the N.C. Cooperative Extension versions as their default templates.Here are the three standard N.C. Cooperative Extension email templates for reference:
What if I Don’t Have a Constant Contact Account?
If you do not have a Constant Contact license, contact the Extension Information Technology (EIT) Help Desk to request one at email@example.com. We strongly encourage our local centers and programs to take advantage of this valuable resource.
Email Marketing Tips
Be mindful of how frequently you send emails to your audiences. Excessive contact will cause fatigue, leading recipients to ignore your messages. Here are some best practices for launching an email campaign.
Download the enclosure slip template for inserting into mailings from your county center or program. The file can be edited in PowerPoint and printed with three enclosure slips per page.
You can download N.C. Cooperative Extension logos all at once (organized by print and web/Office types) or individually as needed.
The “Print” folder contains EPS files, which are the only logos that should be used for print, as these vector files will maintain print quality at any size.
The JPG logos can be used for Microsoft Office documents, like Word and PowerPoint, or for websites.
Visit the Visual Identity page for detailed logo usage guidelines.
Logos without Shadow
Individual Logo Elements
The marketing and communications team have developed a collection of Word templates that employees can customize and use to create professional marketing documents.
These templates carry the N.C. Cooperative Extension mark and space for county center or program identification. This is the first of several sets of templates that we will provide over the coming months.
Open the folder on your computer to find a variety of templates, including:
- 2 Cards
- 2 Local Reports
- 5 Fliers/Handouts
There are also two support files (NCCE.thmx and NCCE.xml) that should not be deleted. Store these wherever you file the templates on your computer. You can use the templates without the support files, but they help ensure that settings like our brand color palette and fonts function properly.
Each of the template files already includes the required equal opportunity statement. Employees may still need to add a certain statement(s) – a cost statement, for example – within the templates at times.
We’ve omitted these statements (except the non-discrimination statement, which must appear on everything) because the templates can be used for various purposes and may not require all of the same statement(s) each time. This also creates flexibility to place required statements where they fit best within your content.
Review the Referencing Extension page for guidelines on required statements.
Media / News Releases
- News Release Template | N.C. Cooperative Extension (Word)
- Telling Our Story – Extension Communications Tips Sheet
If the opportunity arises to serve as a source for a media outlet (whether it’s a local newspaper or a national trade publication), take time to review these tips before providing an interview.
- Know who the reporter is and what organization they represent.
- Ask what the story will be about and when their deadline is.
- Determine whether you are knowledgeable to do the interview or if you need to refer to someone else.
- Develop three key messages and supporting points for these messages.
- Anticipate tough questions and practice answering them with your key messages.
- Don’t assume reporter knowledge; consider providing key points in writing.
- If a reporter asks a question that you don’t want to answer, bridge to a response that gets across one of your key messages.
- Be prepared. Stick to key messages, talk slowly and lead with the bottom line.
- Avoid “no comment.”
- Tell the truth.
We are also available to assist with media relations and story development. Contact us to learn more or discuss a media opportunity.
Visit our official N.C. Cooperative Extension store to find branded promotional items and apparel. More details are available on the Online Store page.
You’ll need to login with your Unity ID.
Once you’ve followed the guidelines to create your store account, you can follow this direct link to the N.C. Cooperative Extension online store.
Utilize our photo galleries as possible and always follow the style guidelines when creating marketing materials. Our images are copyright-protected, on-brand and should not be used for personal purposes.
- Extension Brand Pics (Google Drive)
Sign in with your Unity ID to access the folders/files on Google Drive.
- NC State Photos (All Galleries)
You must first request an account to download hi-res image files.
Photo Release Form
When needed, you can also consider exploring royalty-free image sites. This short list includes sites that offer freely-licensed visual media content, though fees may be applied to certain pics in some situations.
- Regular Presentation Template (4×3)
- Wide Presentation Template A (16×9)
- Wide Presentation Template B (16×9)
Download slides with general Extension information to insert into your presentations as needed. Slides include basic overview details, Extension history, impacts and organizational metrics, as well as slide templates that can be customized.
NC State employees can also access tools and templates for Google Slides as part of the university’s G Suite services. Create, edit and collaborate with others on presentations from any device for free.
In an effort to improve the availability and distribution of printed Extension publications, we are continually revamping our service model to serve you.
Visit the Order Extension Publications page for the latest guidelines on requesting all printed publications, including the N.C. Agricultural Chemicals Manual, Pest Control for Professional Turfgrass Managers and others.
You can also view electronic versions of all publications via the NC State Extension Publications Resource Catalog.
Signage and Displays
Employees can quickly and easily order from a selection of N.C. Cooperative Extension signage and promotional materials from our state vendor, The Roberts Group.
Visit Ordering Signage and Display Items for a list of some of the most requested resources, such as county center signage and table covers. Our vendor can assist you with custom orders and finding additional products – from displays to decals – as well.
Explore our official N.C. Cooperative Extension store to find branded promotional items and apparel. More details are available on the Online Store page. You’ll need to login with your Unity ID.
The Stationery section of this page outlines other related items, including business cards, envelopes, letterhead, name badges and “thank you” cards.
Social Media Assets
Refer to the NC State Social Media Site for best practices, the university’s social media policy and how to register your account as an official listing on the university site.
Extension Social Media Messaging Themes
Extension’s social media content should reinforce and fall within one or more of the following messaging buckets, which align with our brand drivers and provide optimal support for Extension’s marketing goals and brand identity:
- Best People (= Expertise, Profiles)
- Highlight our topical expertise and employees: we have the best people and customer service (e.g. employee stories/profiles, some Homegrown videos, etc.)
- Research-based Programs (= Content, Tools/Services)
- Spotlight key programs and their impacts: trusted, research-based efforts driving growth and prosperity across the state
- “Programs” = what Extension provides (tools, services, knowledge, etc.)
- Extensive Partnerships (= Outreach, Network)
- Tout our partnerships and vast statewide network: we’re in every community working with stakeholders to address timely issues that others aren’t equipped to manage
- Leader in Experiential Education (= Delivery/How, Helping clients transfer research into everyday application)
- Focus on the “how” / delivery aspect of our work: Extension provides individualized solutions (tools, resources, guides, events, etc.) that exemplify high-tech / high-touch, innovation, customer-oriented, localized
Social Post Checklist
- Does the post support how we’re growing the state / improving the lives of North Carolinians?
- Does it appeal to and/or is it timely or relevant to our audiences?
- Does it support one or more of our four strategic messaging themes?
- Could it cause negative impacts for partners or stakeholders (is there a chance it could deter consumers from engaging with certain products, activities, etc.)?
N.C. Cooperative Extension business cards are available through The Roberts Group at any time. Administration will cover the cost of a new employee’s first order of cards, just add a comment in the order form and the cards will be invoiced appropriately.
If you receive an invoice from the vendor by mistake, tell them to charge the Extension stationery account or have them contact Justin Moore.
*The following cards are for NC State county employees:
- View Business Card | 1-column template
- View Business Card | 2-column template
- View Business Card | Two-county agent template
*N.C. A&T county employees should contact Anita Wright for guidance on ordering business cards.
Contact The Roberts Group directly with questions and orders:
Employees may order envelopes at any time; orders are no longer being placed centrally on a quarterly basis. Wolf Xpress is the official vendor of N.C. Cooperative Extension envelopes.
When ordering envelopes, please order directly through Wolf Xpress following the instructions outlined below. You needn’t send orders to Extension Administration or CALS Communications.
*Additional sizes are available upon request. Please allow up to 2-3 weeks for delivery.
We encourage employees to print letterhead as needed at your local office. However, if your office has insufficient print capabilities or you need larger quantities, you may place orders through Wolf Xpress for letterhead as well.
- Download Letterhead | 1-column template (Word)
- Download Letterhead | 2-column template (Word)
- Order Online at Wolf Xpress
Employees may submit new or replacement badge requests any time using the online order form below. Extension administration funds all new employee badges at this time.
Temporary Name Tag
Employees can download a template (PDF) for creating quick name tags for events and meetings. These are intended for temporary use by visitors or employees who need a badge on short notice.
Vendor contact information is also provided if you have questions or issues:
Thank You Cards
Employees have a few options for creating and/or ordering cards that can be used as announcements, greetings or thank yous. Below is a sample proof for a 5.5″ x 4.25″ folded card, which is available through our state vendor, The Roberts Group.
Pricing may vary over time, but The Roberts Group charges $0.25/ea. for 500 cards, plus an additional $0.10/ea. for blank white envelopes (total of about $175 for 500 cards and envelopes).
You can contact our vendor representative – Cody Williams (firstname.lastname@example.org) – to place an order.
Video Editing Resources
The assets below will help you create consistent, professional N.C. Cooperative Extension videos that build our brand identity across the state.
Lower Third Generator
This tool will help you generate an image file (JPG) that can be downloaded and used in your video as a text box for names/titles (i.e. a lower third).
Intro and Outro Bumpers
One of these graphics should be used as the intro and closing frames for all N.C. Cooperative Extension videos.
N.C. Cooperative Extension Videos
These videos are housed on YouTube for easier embedding on sites and sharing with audiences through presentations, events or email marketing efforts that showcase our N.C. Cooperative Extension partnership.
To get the video link and access other sharing options, click the curved arrow icon at the top right of each video player box. Contact us if you need original video files (.mp4).
N.C. Cooperative Extension | Service Vision
Growing North Carolina with Our County Partners | N.C. Cooperative Extension
Margaret Spellings Touts Cooperative Extension’s Value to North Carolina
Cooperative Extension at N.C. A&T
Comments or Questions
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