It may seem simple, but signage is often an unsung hero for event attendees. When it works, it’s an afterthought. When it doesn’t – blame and unwanted attention. Strategically placed, your event signage helps remind your attendees of where they are and creates an immersive branding opportunity. The success of any event is determined by meticulous planning, targeted messaging and key signage placement. Stacy Tandon, creative director at ITA Group, discusses some strategies to consider.
Set a Budget
Signage is a bold – and cost-effective – way to deliver your message. Setting a budget will drive what areas can be branded and to what extent. Ask yourself, how immersive should this event be?
Develop a Strategic Plan
Know what goes where, when, why and how. Signage is as much functional as it is informative. Include landmarks and aids for direction to make your site more navigable. Define key moments of brand interaction, like the front door, the venue entryway or your registration table; these areas are worth investing in signage because they’re highly visible and high traffic. When planning your event, always put yourself in the attendee’s shoes.
Understand the Environment
Part of the strategic plan should take into consideration elements of weather, restrictions, labor use, power needs and a handful of others. How large is the space? Is it more effective to use hanging, freestanding or digital signage – or maybe it’s a combination?
One Size DOES NOT Fit All
Different events call for different materials: digital, printed signs, banners, floor graphics, installations, meter boards, human messaging, etc. Explore mediums that best suit the environment, audience size and communicate the overall message.
Tell Your Story
Use signage to tell your story, inform, entice and attract. Create an immersive, shareworthy space – unique to your company and brand – that people want to engage with that reflects your brand messaging.
Strong signage strategy begins at the first place a guest will interact with your brand. Consider extending your reach even beyond the conference center or hotel to that first touch point, the airport. If your budget allows, put your event’s logo everywhere. From cling wrap on escalators to the swag you’re giving out, make sure your brand and logo are pervasive throughout the event.
Measure Your Impact
While anyone can visually measure the success of your signage, access to hard data takes a more creative approach. Combining wayfinding and immersion strategies provides you with a system of user engagement and constant visual feedback that contributes to stronger understanding of the impact your event signage has on attendees.
All Signs Point to Planning
Anything and everything that is planned as part of an event should be done with purpose. Meetings and events are quickly turning into immersive brand experiences that create a sense of place to achieve education or sales objectives. And signage is a way to create that immersion (or experience).
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