In this study, amphiphilic brush-like copolymers conjugated with short alkyl or long polymeric chains of various lengths are synthesized using ring-opening metathesis polymerization (ROMP) of substituted norbornadiene monomers followed by chemical transformations. These amphiphilic copolymers form spherical self-assemblies in aqueous media with diameters of 132–244 nm. The low critical aggregation concentration of these assemblies (2.5 × 10−3−1.4 × 10−5 g/L) indicates that they are quite stable in dilute conditions. An appropriate length of polymer side chain that conjugates the polymer backbone with a hydrophobic ICG (indocyanine green) moiety enhanced the fluorescence intensities of these self-assemblies in aqueous solution as well as in tumor-bearing mice. A longer side chain conjugated with tumor targeting agents could significantly affect the tumor specificity of self-assemblies to a greater extent. The self-assemblies bearing hydrophilic tumor targeting agents, such as a glucosamine molecule and a cyclic RGD (arginine–glycine–asparatic acid) peptide, accumulated in tumor tissues with high selectivity, while those having a hydrophobic targeting agent, such as folate moieties, accumulated in tumor sites with low selectivity. The results demonstrated here unambiguously indicate that the fluorescence intensity and tumor specificity of self-assemblies are strongly affected by the length of side chains that conjugate with dyes and targeting agents.