Modernising an historic organisation

The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh needed to change the way it communicates in order to effectively engage with both current and prospective members.

Founded in 1505, the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh is the oldest and largest surgical college in the UK. With 23,000 members working in all four UK home nations and internationally, it promotes the highest standards of surgical excellence to improve patient care.

However, with increasing competition, the College needed to review its brand, marketing and communications activities to ensure it was engaging effectively with current and potential members at every stage of their careers, driving up participation levels.

rbl conducted an extensive programme of research, holding 1:1 conversations with senior clinicians, professional staff, members and non-members. We developed an independent point of view about the strengths and weakness of existing activities and made a series of clear recommendations to reposition the College as the professional home of surgery and dentistry.

Since developing an updated identity for the college, we have put forward concepts and plans for an extensive programme of communications activity that will be delivered over the next year that puts the focus back on the membership, addressing their professional needs and concerns.

One of the new pieces of communication, a ’50 Reasons’ booklet, showcases the extensive range of benefits to prospective members. The booklet is just one of the ways through which we have brought the new brand to life, in an effort to engage with the College’s audience in a more meaningful way, and do justice to the level of service and support that it provides to its members.

“We have really enjoyed working with you. Your analysis has been spot on, your advice very clear and your creative recommendations transformative. You are the breath of fresh air that we need.”

Alison Rooney, Chief Executive, Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh