Brand Identity & Visual Standards

Guidelines for creating UofL-branded marketing materials and websites


Photo of man typing on laptop

Effective writing goes beyond proper grammar and punctuation. When crafting messaging and content for the University of Louisville brand, it’s important to make it engaging and evocative. Above all, it should sound as consistent as possible. The following section provides insight into how our brand sounds and expresses itself, as well as advice to keep in mind when writing.


We are one University, and we should speak with one voice.

Our voice shapes every communication across all audience segments, both internal and external. It captures the unique personality the University of Louisville expresses to the world and reflects how we think and feel. Our voice should remain relatively consistent no matter who we’re talking to or what we’re talking about.

The UofL brand voice is:

  • Optimistic
  • Self-assured
  • Inclusive, welcoming and positive
  • Vibrant
  • Tenacious
  • Bold and inspiring
  • Honest, genuine

The UofL brand voice is not:

  • Arrogant
  • Aggressive
  • Condescending
  • Indifferent
  • Fanciful or cute
  • Dismissive
  • Trite or superficial
  • Academic
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Our tone is how we want to be perceived by our constituents and audiences. It’s the attitude we convey in our communications. While our voice should remain consistent in all situations, our tone can be adjusted to be appropriate for each audience. For example, the way we speak to prospective students may be less formal than addressing alumni donors. When you write, think of your audience as an individual and consider that person’s perspective when determining how to capture attention, hold attention and bring about an action. What motivates that individual? What concerns that individual? What resonates on both an intellectual and an emotional level?

Generally speaking, the tone of our brand should be genuine, confident and guided by a relentless sense of purpose. It should also convey the open, inclusive nature of our Cardinal community and our hunger for innovation.

UofL is on a mission to be the change. To rise to the challenge. To stand up for what's right. To find a way. And to lead. But who is UofL? If you were to imagine UofL as a person, who would that be? A teacher who connects and inspires a struggling student to soar to incredible new heights? A successful alumna who believes she has a responsibility to mentor the next generation? A renowned researcher who’s driven to uncover solutions to the grand challenges of our time? Or perhaps a passionate student driven to overcome every obstacle and make a difference? In truth, UofL is all these individuals. Depending on the situation, you can imagine you are speaking as any of the countless people who provide the distinctive energy that defines not only our university but also our impact on Louisville and the world. Strive to capture that energy with the tone of your communication in a way that resonates with your audience.

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Communications & Marketing

University of Louisville

2323 S. Brook St.

Louisville, KY 40208

(502) 852-6171