I love “branding” events. Though they are sort lived, involve loads of planning, prep and coordination, creating an “image” and “vibe” for an event is a unique and playful challenge I really enjoy. When asked to create an online promotion for an upcoming summer social networking bash combining three Minnesota professional organizations, I jumped. A mid-summer mixer can certainly benefit from a little branding boost.
What did I have to work with to get started? The Players: IABC MN (International Association of Business Communicators), MWMC (Minnesota Women in Marketing & Communications) and MHSCN (Minnesota Health Strategy & Communications Network). A Location: the bodacious Bauhaus Brew Labs. A Date: August 4th. (That would be a Tuesday, folks, save it!), and a time. (5:00 to 8:00 pm.)
That’s it. How will I combine three organizations, all having communications in common, beer, summer, and networking? Each group has its own branding — I wasn’t going to even attempt to combine any of that together. Instead, I focused on the image for the event itself. What would it look and feel like?
Already dubbed a “mixer,” I thought about what mixes in visually eye-catching ways. I though about splashes, energy and bright color. Given I’m a fine artist, to boot, I’m thinking, yes, watercolor! That would be the back splash for the promoting the event.
A bright and lively watercolor background would be too busy to place content for the event. I was already thinking “badge” as a graphic element that could work posted on all three organizations’ websites. With beer being a supporting character, I fashioned a “bottle cap” style badge to craft a “theme” for the event.
When ever I’m working on a branding project, I’ll often write to create a tone and personality, regardless if the copy gets used or not. Writing the content came naturally in this case and the so became an accepted element to promote the event.
Want to see it all together and in action? Check it out here and here for details and here for tickets. BONUS: The Bauhaus Brew Labs marketing and communications team will talk about their advertising and social media strategy in such a competitive market! So save the date (August 4th) and come join us in making this the Best Peer Mixer EVER! #SeeYouAtTheMixer.