BRANDING THE CUSTOMER JOURNEY
Branding an event reaches far beyond the placement of your company logo and should expand to include your brand’s look, message and actions. All of these will influence the ability of your event to capture the essence of your brand from the moment you extend your invitation. Read more…
Branding the Customer Journey
Building on last month’s Mapping the Magic Moments [link], the customer journey can also be used as a framework for thinking about how you brand your event. The guest experience should reflect your brand values, which stand at the very core of your business. Branding an event reaches far beyond the placement of your company logo and should expand to include your brand’s look, message and actions. All of these will influence the ability of your event to capture the essence of your brand from the moment you extend your invitation.
Consider your visual identity in all aspects of design
For attendees, the next key brand exposure takes place on arrival at the venue. Ensure that placement of your logo, advertising imagery and branded signage create immediate impact by appearing in the eye line of entering visitors. However, do not forget about some of the more subtle details that may prove incredibly telling as to whether you truly live up to your brand values. Your visual identity encompasses all aspects of design. While Apple is an over-used example, it serves as a great reference point because its brand is so clear and consistent. Imagine arriving at an Apple event and seeing registration tables edged with black skirting. It simply wouldn’t happen. The registration tables would be white, slick, modern and have built-in docking stations for iPads. If your brand is innovative, dynamic and forward-thinking then consider bespoke builds to communicate the right values at critical points of the journey. Just as with people, first impressions count. You may be able to save on cost by creating transportable units that can be re-used. Of course don't forget your actions also convey your values - the most impressive design won't offset a queue out the door.
Build your brand story through the journey
Whether you are leading people through an exhibition stand or a multi-day conference, there is an opportunity to craft a compelling story that unfolds across the physical journey that people take from arrival to departure. For example, imagine you want to reinforce your business’ long-standing commitment to helping clients manage through times of change and uncertainty. This isn't the sole purpose of your event, but rather is an overarching brand message you wish to deliver. One way to communicate this would be to create a timeline along the walls as your participants move from registration to coffee and on to plenary sessions and break-out rooms. By showing the long history of corporate presence through photographs and perhaps sharing client case studies it is possible to subtly deliver your brand message alongside core conference content. Another great example of brand storytelling can be found in this issue’s BP case study [link]. The launch of their BP Ultimate with ACTIVE technology fuels took people through a physical journey of interactive experiences that followed a powerful narrative from problem to solution and benefit.
Thinking about the customer journey when you consider your event branding not only may help you to identify new opportunities to create impact, but it also helps ensure consistency in the way your brand values come to life.