Our client planned to host an annual conference in Houston, Texas at the George R. Brown convention center for two consecutive years. Taking advantage of Staging Solutions’ in-house accessibility and creative and technical expertise, they looked to us to transform the expansive convention center space into an event brand-saturated environment using an identity they had already developed.
The first year’s project was a success: We enhanced the original concept for multiple applications, and scaled it in myriad ways: from lanyards, to corridors and connective spaces, to the General Assembly Hall and the George H.W. Bush Ballroom. The building was a cohesive, consistent experience celebrating innovation and creativity.
Moving into the second year our challenge was to assist in the creation and development of a new event brand identity for the conference from the ground up. The goal was not only to immerse the audience as we had the year before, but also to make the experience feel like a complete departure for attendees in the same venue.
As we do with a project of any size, we started with the Six Ds. Through this process we engage clients to craft experiences that bring value to their brand, and engage their audience. For this project we were fortunate to have a template for execution from the prior year, but creatively we were excited to start from scratch to develop a fresh event brand identity for the upcoming conference.
This client wanted to shift the attendee focus from a familiar venue to new content, and they asked for a profound thematic departure. Staging’s Senior Graphic Designer Ross Van Balen began with the messaging, and guided the clients through a series of designs to understand what appealed to them, what didn’t, and why; then, he honed the selections based on how efficiently they communicated their key messages.
This process empowered Ross to craft a brand that tells a story; in this case, how the company offers a comprehensive, fully-supported experience for their clients out of the numerous components and boutique services they offer. Then, he built the event brand universe where everything would live and work together.
The new brand was the foundation of the conference’s visual identity, and launched the development of our scenic and media design processes in a holistic and comprehensive way. We applied it to the venue to create the immersive experience the client desired, from scenic components, wayfinding, and media, to – once again – lanyards.
The goal of a fresh experience was achieved! The newly developed brand identity was the opposite of the previous year’s gritty, streetwise aesthetic: it was sleek, clean, and precise, and had the desired character of an industry standard.