You don’t have to cover every bit of wall and carpet to transform a hotel ballroom into a custom branded corporate event. If you design and plan your space well, a moderate number of walls, accents, graphics, and furnishings will get the job done just fine.
Corporate event planners know that the time-tested approach of taking over hotel ballrooms with adjacent breakout rooms works well from a space and traffic flow perspective. They also know that, when you want a custom look and feel for your event environments, typical hotel ballroom décor doesn’t cut it.
Here’s how 3D Exhibits and our customer BroadSoft transformed the patterned carpet, bland walls, and seventeen-foot ceilings of a typical hotel ballroom into a custom-branded networking lounge and partner showcase for BroadSoft’s annual users conference.
1. Start with bold identity.
Strategic and bold placement of your logo, conference theme and graphics enables your brand to dominate the space and overcome the existing decor. The trick is, rather than repeat your messaging everywhere, to create focal areas that are bold enough to overcome any competition for visual dominance.
BroadSoft’s visual focus was a custom backwall that ran along one side of the ballroom. The deep blue background stood out from the neutral existing décor—which served as a non-verbal instruction for attendees to focus their attention there.
2. Repeat the elements at various heights and in various formats.
No matter where an attendee stands, they should be able to see some form of your messaging. Go with larger and higher mounted for messaging that needs to be visible from across the room. Then reinforce with smaller messaging on counters, monitors and demo stations.
BroadSoft placed brand and theme graphics prominently throughout the space, reiterating them on the registration area, wayfinding signage, LED screens, and workstations.
3. Weave in accents and finishes that reinforce your brand.
BroadSoft went with white and light wood finishes on its exhibitry and used an expansive oval of dark blue carpet to differentiate various zones within the large overall space.
4. Create spotlight areas for focus products.
This is not the place to skimp. Product displays are where your customer meets your offerings, maybe for the first time.
The best display elements stand out but don’t overshadow your product. Investing in high quality materials and finishes subliminally communicates your brand’s commitment to excellence.
BroadSoft reinforced its commitment to excellence by forgoing the standard draped table and using heavy wooden fixtures for its hands-on demo stations. Distinctive free-standing signage conveyed product information at a glance.
5. Choose furnishings that reflect your brand.
When creating a networking or lounge area that aligns with your brand image, comfort and quality are key. Guests will long remember unsteady tables, uncomfortable couches, and awkward exits from bean bag chairs.
The ideal strategy is to incorporate a variety of seating arrangements and meeting areas to accommodate different types of conversations and add to the visual interest of the room.
BroadSoft used white leather couches, love seats and high boys to create a series of informal networking clusters. The addition of clear walls added intimacy without impeding the overall open ambiance of the room.
6. Unify the look of partner kiosks.
Rooms with lots of partner showcases often look cluttered and crowded. The solution is to anchor the space with consistent displays. Forgo standard displays and go with a highly functional custom design that reflects your brand personae.
In addition to providing a cohesive look, custom displays can incorporate design features that make your partners’ products shine—hidden wiring, spot lighting, storage, built-in monitors and signage.
BroadSoft used tall wooden frames to enhance their partners’ presence. These were supported by a mounted LED screen, table top and storage cabinet. These space-efficient double-sided displays minimized the amount of floor space taken up and reduced the overall spend.
How do you cost-effectively brand your corporate events? We’d love to hear.