ILS Partners With Brand School To Offer Business Masterclass

Dominican University of California’s Institute for Leadership Studies has partnered with global branding expert Julie Cottineau to offer small business owners, entrepreneurs, and non-profit leaders an eight-week masterclass on new ways to examine branding challenges and create fresh solutions to those challenges.

Cottineau’s Brand School will feature a series of weekly online classes with Cottineau, individual feedback, one-on-one coaching, and guest lectures on social media, website design, publicity, and trademark law. Classes start October 8.

Cottineau will offer a course preview when she presents “Three Brand Rules for the Pandemic” at Dominican’s Business Edge Briefing on Thursday, September 17 from 9 -10:30 a.m.

Before starting Brand School and the Brand Twist consultancy, Cottineau worked as a vice president at Grey Global in both the US and France and as executive director of consumer branding at Interbrand. She has client-side experience as the vice president of brand at Richard Branson's Virgin Management Group, overseeing branding strategy for new and established Virgin companies in North America.

“These are scary times for business, but one silver lining is that disruption can actually breed significant innovation, Cottineau says. “Brand School will help local businesses and nonprofits boost their brand immunity by twisting uncertainty into opportunity.”

Brand Twist’s Brand School embodies the values and practices of Dominican’s Institute for Leadership Studies, notes Dr. Denise Lucy, ILS executive director and professor of business and organizational studies in the Barowsky School of Business.

“Our mission is to create leaders at all levels who are trustworthy, achieving their promises, as they effect positive change,” Lucy says. “Brand School’s principles of building a core brand promise based on strategic value pillars that guide decision-making resonate with our purposes.”

Cottineau notes that Brand School is aligned with the ILS mission of preparing students for leadership in the real world, effectively and ethically meeting the challenges that face the business community today.

 “Brand School is not brand theory,” she explains. “It’s branding best practices applied to real world challenges – with interactive exercises, hands-on tools and the support of a cohort of other small business owners and entrepreneurs.”

More than 1,000 professionals have attended Brand School, including coaches (health, wellness, career, lifestyle), professional service providers (attorneys, doctors, private wealth management, insurance, real estate), and product marketers (jewelry designers, spirits, personal care).

“With business challenges brought on by COVID-19, the course will pay particular attention on how to lead through these changing times by building and strengthening brands that are able to twist uncertainty into opportunity,” Cottineau says.

The outcomes of Brand School include: 

  • A clear focus on your most profitable customers and ideal target
  • A core brand promise that will connect emotionally and drive loyalty
  • Strategic Brand Pillars (values) to guide all your business decisions
  • A succinct an powerful elevator pitch and tagline
  • A personal brand story that will set you apart and make your brand memorable
  • Tools, templates, and briefs to create stronger design and marketing messaging

The cost of the eight-week series is $2,250. The tuition for the Dominican community has been reduced by $100 through a special promotion code “DOMINICAN” and includes a copy of Cottineau’s book “TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands."

The Business Edge Briefing is $25 for the general public and $20 for Dominican faculty, staff, students, and alumni. The price includes a copy of the book. Dominican is grateful for the sponsor support of Bank of Marin.

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