Excitement is high. Imagination is the only limitation. It's an event producer's utopia, otherwise known as branding on a big budget. In a stunning revelation, having lots of money to spend on an event is fantastic. Often times, though, more cash isn't in the cards. This might mean you need to infuse some extra creativity, but it also gives you an opportunity to really prove your worth. Here are five ways to add branding to events without breaking the bank.
1. Drum up some decals
Die-cut adhesive vinyls go a long way as subtle touches to seamless branding. The impact can be significant, they work with both large and small-scale events, and the cost is relatively minimal. Walls and windows are the traditional surfaces that come to mind, but don't be afraid to get creative. Photo props, games, décor, trays and glasses, etc., can be a fit almost anywhere.
2. Giveaways shouldn't be leave-behinds
Giveaways can leave a lasting impression, but too often they don't last past the nearest trash bin once guests leave an event. If you're going to invest the money, don't just slap your logo on anything. Make sure you're giving away something that your attendees want __ or need. At a recent multiday conference, we created a complimentary "Amenity Store," where attendees could visit throughout the day and pick up commonly requested items. Things like Tide to Go, mini mint containers, hand sanitizer, emergency phone chargers and Colgate wisps. Every item wasn't branded, but between the ones that were and the overall store branding, the idea was incredibly effective, practical and popular, without being pricey.
3. Make an entrance
Often, the most impactful branding can appear when a guest is walking into or out of a space. In addition to immediate brand exposure, you're also capturing guest attention before they're stimulated by other visuals, experiences or people. Immediate branding opportunities include stairs or escalators, registration desks or maybe even an archway or entry-tunnel. In addition to creating an immediate impact, this type of branding can also double as directional signage so guests know they've arrived.
When you're in need of bars for your event, the common solution is securing them from a rental company. This works fine but can be expensive without having a customized look. A creative alternative is securing tall rectangular tables and renting simple bar screens. In addition to being cheaper, different screen fabrics will allow you to create a look that matches your style and integrate some more branding as well (like those handy decals!).
5. Forget the flowers
If money is tight and branding is important, consider nonfloral décor to integrate branding and engage your guests. Illuminated lanterns are a fantastic way to feature content like testimonials, photos or key messaging. Single lanterns can take the place of smaller arrangements on cocktail tables, and sets can substitute for traditional centerpieces.
Big-budget branding can be a dream, but getting creative with your dollars doesn't need to be a nightmare. Remember that there are always ways to infuse imagination and make sure your event's message is loud and clear.
Adam Sloyer is chief executive officer of Sequence, an award-winning events agency specializing in production, strategic planning and design. Sequence is based in NYC and executes events globally, working with a wide range of Fortune 500 companies and global nonprofits.