All universities have a different brand, this is what makes each one different and unique to the area of the UK that they are based in. Your image is how potential students (and teachers) will interpret you and what you stand for. This will also reflect on uni life, what the courses are like and what the culture is like on campus. Consider our leading universities, Oxford, Cambridge, Hull (yes, that is Black Adder, but that is branding). You need to stand out. You need to attract both students and lecturers.
Branding for universities is normally dependent on the fees that the agency charges. All branding companies are different and have different rates and profit margins. If you select an agency that has big offices and a large creative team, their design rates will be higher than a smaller design studio down the road. Branding prices will vary considerably, so shopping around for quotes is essential. Branding for universities does not have to be expensive, but you do need to shop around.
When considering branding for universities, it is very wise to select a designer that has experience in the educational sector, and has a track record of success. You can have a look at their design portfolio and maybe chat to some of their clients to see what they are like and what they are like to work with.
Before deciding on who to use, it is wise to get a few proposals in, look at different creative ideas and get different prices for the work. Branding for universities is important, compare quotes to find the best agency at the lowest price.