Iowa State University
A Refreshed Brand for a New Generation

Evolving communications for a Gen Z audience.

Iowa State University Freshman Viewbook spread

Societal trends across the country are leading to flattening or even declining numbers of students seeking post-secondary education. As Iowa State University prepares for this “new normal” in higher education it has become crucial to refresh marketing and communications to be relevant with a new cohort looking at college — Generation Z.


Based on ZLR Ignition’s deep understanding of Gen Z, we have helped the university connect with high school students and evolve the meaning of the Iowa State adventure. The new communications we helped create speak to Gen Z’s value of diversity, creativity, individuality and the desire to do big things and shape their world.

ZLR’s brand approach directed the development of brochures for Iowa State recruiters visiting high schools and education fairs, organic and paid content to engage prospects through their social channels, and student-centric digital advertising. Iowa State branding engages Gen Z to envision the opportunities at Iowa State to create their adventure.

Spread in Freshman Viewbook
Spread in Freshman Viewbook

The continual evolution of the Iowa State adventure brand has positioned the university to be an innovative leader in connecting with and attracting Gen Z students.

Iowa State University mural ad at Adventureland Park wave pool: "Make Waves"