Table of Contents
- Service Marks: EXTENSION MASTER GARDENER℠, MASTER GARDENER℠
- How to reference the EMG program and volunteers.
- Designate the service mark with ℠.
- Use the service mark as an adjective.
- NC State Extension Master Gardener℠ always comes first.
- Do not pair the service marks with any logo other than the official EMG logo.
- Icon and Tagline
The NC State Extension Master Gardener Program Brand
The NC State Extension Master Gardener℠ (NC State EMG) program is a partnership with the United States Department of Agriculture, North Carolina Cooperative Extension, and county governments throughout the state. The NC State EMG brand components (service marks, logo, icon, and tagline) represent the program’s identity and ideals.
By consistently using the brand components, we leverage the power of the NC State brand, while also building recognition and value for the EMG program. Using the brand components inappropriately, not using the brand components at all, or using unapproved components detracts from the strength of the program, diminishes the EMG brand, and risks loss of the service marks. The NC State EMG program is administered by NC State Extension and is required to follow NC State Extension brand guidelines.
Brand Components of the NC State EMG Program
A service mark is a legally registered name used to distinguish an organization’s services from those of its competitors. NC State owns the following service marks:
- Extension Master Gardener℠ is registered as an education program for horticulture.
- Master Gardener℠ is registered as "a trained volunteer who provides horticultural information to the public under the supervision of NC State Extension.”
The official program title is “NC State Extension Master Gardener℠ program.” The official title for a program participant is “Master Gardener℠ volunteer.” The title Master Gardener volunteer may only be used in reference to students, interns, or volunteers who are currently active in the program, and emeritus volunteers.
The Extension Master Gardener program is a signature program of NC State Extension. To protect that status and to promote the link between the program and Extension, the word “Extension” must always precede “Master Gardener” when referring to the program and in first reference to program volunteers.
- On first reference of the program, use “NC State Extension Master Gardener℠ program.”
- This may be shortened to “Extension Master Gardener program” in subsequent references.
- Another option is to follow the first use of the service mark with the acronym EMG in parentheses, “NC State Extension Master Gardener℠ (EMG) program.” Then use “EMG program” throughout the rest of the document.
- Include “NC State” on the first reference to a program volunteer — that is, “NC State Extension Master Gardener℠ volunteer” — unless the official program title has already been used, in which case use “Extension Master Gardener volunteer.”
- This may be shortened to “Master Gardener volunteer” in subsequent references.
- Another option is to follow the first use of the service mark with the acronym EMG in parentheses, “NC State Extension Master Gardener℠ (EMG) volunteer.” Then use “EMG volunteer” throughout the remainder of the document.
- The Extension Master Gardener℠ program connects individuals with the benefits of gardening through science-based education and outreach.
- On first use “NC State” must precede “Extension Master Gardener.”
- The NC State Extension Master Gardener℠ program connects individuals with the benefits of gardening through science-based education and outreach.
Neither the word “program” nor the word “volunteer” are part of the service mark. Do not include them in the acronym.
- EMG program, not EMGP
- EMG volunteer, not EMGV or MGV
The first time each service mark is used in text, acknowledge the service mark rights by placing ℠ immediately after it. Add emphasis by capitalizing the first letter of each service mark term. Do not capitalize terms that follow the service mark (such as, program or volunteer).
- Extension Master Gardener℠ program
- Extension Master Gardener℠ volunteers
It is not necessary to use the ℠ every time the mark appears.
- Use the ℠ on the first or most important occurrence of the mark on each separate element of the product or text.
- For subsequent uses of the service mark in the same product, you are not required to repeat the ℠.
- If in doubt, use the ℠ more often rather than less often.
If an application does not have the ability to superscript, the ℠ may be omitted. Where it is not possible to use superscript do not use “℠” or (℠). Instead, add emphasis to the service marks with ALL CAPITAL letters, bold, italic lettering, or “quotes.”
Correct (when superscript is not possible):
- EXTENSION MASTER GARDENER volunteers
- Extension Master Gardener program
- Extension Master Gardener volunteers
- “Extension Master Gardener” program
The service mark is not a thing; it describes things or services. It tells clients which goods and services we provide versus those provided by others.
The service mark must always be used as an adjective, to describe something such as the program or a volunteer. Do not use it as a noun, in the plural form, in the possessive form, or as a verb.
- Ten Extension Master Gardeners℠ attended the workday.
- The Extension Master Gardener’s℠ projector
- Extension Master Gardening
- Ten Extension Master Gardener℠ volunteers attended the workday.
- The Extension Master Gardener℠ volunteer’s projector
- Extension Master Gardener℠ training.
To emphasize the link between the program and Extension as a statewide partnership, the county name must always follow the service mark when referencing the EMG program, association, or volunteers at the local level.
- NC State Extension Master Gardener℠ program of ABC County.
- Extension Master Gardener℠ Volunteer Association of ABC County.
- Extension Master Gardener℠ volunteers of ABC County.
The official NC State EMG service marks (including all variations) may not be paired with any logo or graphic element to represent the program, program volunteers, or volunteer associations, other than the official NC State EMG logo.
The official NC State EMG logo is a brand extension of the NC State Extension logo. It features the red NC State brick and the text “Extension Master Gardener” appearing either below or to the right of the brick. Placement of the text cannot be altered.
- Obtain the official NC State EMG logo and use it in its entirety.
- Color is preferred when possible, but there is also a black version of the logo.
- Do not distort or alter the proportions of the logo.
- Do not create your own facsimile of the logo.
- Do not add elements to the logo (including the watering can icon or other imagery).
- Neither the logo nor the text may ever be outlined with no fill color.
- Do not use the NC State EMG marks and logo to imply endorsement of any product, entity, or service.
- Follow all graphic use guidelines outlined in this resource.
For additional information, contact the NC State EMG program manager or NC State Extension director of marketing and communications.
The NC State EMG logo must always appear in its entirety, as a whole, and complete image.
- Do not remove or alter any part of the logo (Figure 1).
- Do not superimpose another image or text over the top of the logo.
- Do not allow other images to touch the logo. Design elements, text, and photos must be spaced at least the height of the NC State brick logo (red rectangle) from the logo.
- Do not allow the logo to extend beyond the edge and be cut off.
- Do not use the logo as a watermark behind other information (Figure 2).
The NC State EMG logo may not be rotated or turned on its side (Figure 3).
The NC State EMG logo may never be screened, shaded, gradated, or appear in alternate multi-colored hues. Refer to the NC State brand site for guidelines on the official colors of the NC State EMG logo.
Black versions of the logo may be used only when the cost of color printing is prohibitive (Figure 4).
While it is acceptable to resize the logo, the appearance, shape, and proportion of the logo should never be distorted (Figure 5). Do not stretch the logo longer, taller, wider, or at an angle. Do not alter the shape in any way.
The overall size of the logo may be changed. Refer to the NC State brand site for guidance on minimum sizing specifications for the logo.
All county Extension materials bearing the EMG logo must follow the N.C. Cooperative Extension Brand Guidelines, including inclusion of required statements outlined in the “Referencing Extension” section.
These design elements add visual interest to program apparel, printed materials, and web content.
- Use only the versions provided by NC State Extension.
- Do not use them in direct conjunction with the EMG or Extension logos.
- Place surrounding text, icons, and other design elements at least the height of the NC State brick (red rectangle) away from the logo.
- Do not modify, create other versions, or combine them with other icons.
- Wolfpack Red is the default color, although it is acceptable to use any color in the university color palette.
The official NC State EMG program icon is a watering can. This may be used as a design element or supplemental graphic to add visual interest to program apparel, printed materials, and web content.
Additional NC State icons may be used to add visual interest and illustrate important facts and figures within web and print content.
The official NC State EMG program tagline is the text “Learn. Grow. Share.” The tagline is a design element to add visual interest and help audiences quickly understand the services and value offered by the EMG program. The tagline may be used on EMG program apparel, printed materials, and web content.
When used with the NC State EMG program watering can icon, the tagline must appear on the right side (Figure 6).
The icon and tagline are available from the NC State EMG Logos and Marketing page.
Permission to Use the Brand Components
The NC State EMG brand components belong to NC State University, and anyone who wishes to use them must obtain permission prior to use. Upon receiving authorization, anyone using the NC State EMG brand components must adhere to all brand standards and guidelines of NC State Extension including restrictions on operation in the marketplace such as messaging and tone.
Use of Brand Components by:
N.C. Cooperative Extension professionals coordinating an EMG program are permitted to use the brand components according to these guidelines.
NC State EMG volunteers are permitted to use the brand components according to these guidelines under the supervision of a local N.C. Cooperative Extension professional.
EMG volunteer associations with a current charter issued by NC State University and a signed Memorandum of Agreement with the local N.C. Cooperative Extension program are permitted to use the NC State EMG brand components for educational purposes and in support of the EMG program in accordance with the regulations, rules, and standards outlined in this document and the NC State EMG Program Guidelines.
The university approved EMG local association logo (Figure 13) is the only logo that may be used by EMG volunteer associations and paired with the service marked terms Extension Master Gardener℠ or Master Gardener℠.
Volunteer associations are not permitted to create or use alternative logos; only the university-approved logos outlined in this resource may be used.
Use of an EMG local association logo on Extension materials and signage must follow these guidelines:
- Events — EMG volunteer associations may co-sponsor events for the public that are planned and implemented in partnership with Extension. Include the N.C. Cooperative Extension logo on all promotional materials for co-sponsored events as shown in Figure 14 and described in the “Partners” section.
- Educational materials and websites — Print and online educational materials for the public created by EMG volunteers must display the NC State EMG county program logo, and, when possible, the N.C. Cooperative Extension logo. Funding provided by a local association to support production of the materials may be acknowledged in a written statement.
- Garden signage — Signage for demonstration and community gardens may only display the NC State EMG county program logo or the N.C. Cooperative Extension logo. Reference to an association and other funding partners must be limited to an acknowledgment of funding provided. For example, “Funding provided in part by the Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Association of ABC County and the NC Nursery and Landscape Association.”
Additional resources for making logo decisions are available to Extension professionals and EMG volunteers on the EMG Intranet, Marketing and Communications page.
Naming Protocol for Local Associations: In all communications, local EMG volunteer associations must follow the naming protocol “Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Association of ABC County,” instead of “ABC County Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Association” or any other name. Do not include "NC State" as part of the organization name (for example, “NC State Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Association of ABC County”). While volunteer associations are essential partners of NC State, the license to use the university’s service marks does not include naming rights for external entities.
The NC State EMG brand components may be used in conjunction with the names, logos, and word marks of other organizations and programs when the NC State EMG program is a partner, co-author, sponsor or supporter, or in some other official relationship. When feasible, the nature of the relationship between the organizations or programs should be clearly defined (such as, “in partnership with,” or “sponsored by”), and the NC State EMG logo must be given prominence consistent with its role in the relationship.
The NC State EMG logo must not be used or integrated into a larger design in such a manner that makes it difficult to recognize or distinguish, or that is not consistent with the graphic guidelines described in this publication.
To avoid the appearance of endorsement of a program, product, or service, the NC State EMG logo may not be incorporated into a larger design of a program, product, or service that is protected by trademark, service mark, copyright, or other similar laws.
Do not incorporate the NC State EMG logo into another organization’s logo.
Others who wish to use the NC State EMG service marks and logo must obtain permission from the NC State Extension director of marketing and communications or the NC State EMG program manager.
Use of Brand Components on Name Badges and Collateral Items
Figures 17 and 18 illustrate the approved formats for NC State EMG name badges. All badges must be obtained from the official vendor. Information about the current vendor is available on the NC EMG Intranet.
The NC State EMG logo may be used for collateral materials such as jewelry or fine art and may be made of metal (copper, bronze, gold, or silver), glass, leather, or wood without conflicting with the color specifications for the NC State EMG logo. Ceramic, plaster, paper, fabric, or any materials that are colored or painted must comply with the color specifications and all other guidelines.
Use of the logo on fabric, whether painted, screen printed, embroidered, appliquéd, or some other technique, must accurately represent the NC State EMG logo in authorized colors and adhere to all other use guidelines.
The NC State EMG logo is not open to reinterpretation or reconfiguration, regardless of its intended use, including the development of materials such as jewelry, sculpture, furniture, signage, crafts, or other fine art.
Branded apparel, accessories, and trade show items that comply with all branding requirements can be purchased directly from the NC State EMG store.
The official NC State EMG brand components are available for download on the NC State Extension Master Gardener Logos and Marketing page.
Making Decisions Regarding Use of the EMG Brand Components
This guide is meant to be a quick reference for using the NC State EMG service marks and logo. If you need more information or clarification, contact the NC State EMG program manager.
CALS Communications offers a range of creative services to Extension professionals, including expertise in design, video, social media, and print resources. Contact the team or submit a project request for feedback and assistance with your local projects.
The authority for determining the proper display and use of the NC State EMG brand components rests with the NC State Extension director of marketing and communications and the NC State EMG program manager.
Sources of Additional Information
Visit the following sites for more information about branding:
Publication date: Sept. 11, 2023
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