Colorado State University
Colorado State University

Colorado State University

Colorado State is a land-grant institution, which means it’s specialized to teach agriculture and military tactics… it also means the university’s influence and brand spreads across the state. Managing marketing materials stemming from campus partners around the state became almost to much for graphic designer Doug Garcia. Until he found Marq, that is.

Industry: Higher Education
Location: Fort Collins, Colorado

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Nestled at the base of the Rocky Mountains, Colorado State University hosts 35,000 students. A land-grant university, CSU is one of the nation’s leading research universities in infectious disease, atmospheric science, and clean energy technologies.

Features they love

Approval process

The ability to turn off the option of downloading a PDF for print until it’s approved.

Locking feature

Locking down fonts, colors, and logos so campus partners can customize templates to their liking without going rogue.

Real-time collaboration

With locations scattered throughout the state, CSU can empower campus partners to edit and request approval on marketing materials on the fly. No lengthy back-and-forth email threads.



Being a land-grant institution, Colorado State’s brand extends into every corner of the state. Their Creative Services team acts as an in-house ad agency of sorts — fulfilling the creative execution for everything from fundraising dinners to student recruitment to general marketing.

But covering so many marketing projects over such a wide geographical area has its complications. Campus partners across the state, not wanting to spend money or time on the Creative Services team, would sometimes resort to creating marketing materials on their own. Microsoft Word or PowerPoint “designs” became commonplace.

Doug Garcia, CSU’S Creative Service’s graphic designer, explained: “Our campus partners would send us designs made in Microsoft products using the wrong colors or logos. So we’d have to send them a list of things that would have to be fixed, and they didn’t like that.”

Doug understood the importance of keeping CSU’s brand consistent across every corner of the state, but he also knew he couldn’t control every piece of marketing collateral that went out… nor did he want to.



Having recently gone through a brand refresh, CSU’s brand managers had an inkling that unless they found a solution, the new visual identity would get lost in the commotion of campus partners’ poor designs. They felt there was a need for templates, so they took to Google.

“When we found Marq,” explains Doug, “we were sucked in by the ability to create branded templates, upload our colors and logos, allow campus partners to customize their designs… and still have complete control over our brand.”

“People in higher education tend to be very focused on their one area of expertise — generally that’s teaching or research. They don’t have time to learn brand standards, that’s not their job. But by implementing Marq we were able to keep them on brand without putting extra work on their plate.”



Eased the load of graphic designers.

“Marq makes my job easier as a designer as I don’t have to have my hands in every project anymore. I can see them, but I don’t have to do them.” — Doug Garcia, Graphic Designer

Happy campus partners.

When Colorado State University considered cutting back on Marq for budget purposes, campus partners were up in arms. The templates and brand assets had been so helpful to them that they put up a fight until it was decided Marq was there to stay.

Brand consistency & growth.

Doug didn’t have to worry about staying on top of every piece of marketing collateral anymore. Instead he could make better use of his time by focusing on CSU’s higher-level branding goals.

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