Case Study: The 40 Percent Symposium
A Brand Refresh, A New Website, and A Digital Marketing Campaign for a Leading European Real Estate Event
BRAND REFRESH - a new logo and colour palette to bring the Symposium's visual brand into the 21st Century and convey technology and disruption in commercial real estate
NEW WEBSITE - a modern, responsive website built using WordPress; use of imagery aligned to the theme of the event (real estate and technology) and complementing the new colour palette; a vastly simplified site, with less content and a more intuitive UX design to drive people to the booking page
DIGITAL MARKETING CAMPAIGN - a social media marketing campaign, including highly-targeted LinkedIn and Twitter adverts; and a few MailChimp e-shots (although the vast majority of the increase in interest came purely via social)
RESULTS - a surge in social media activity, with dozens of Tweets, ReTweets and mentions using the event hashtag; media attention resulting in three journalists attending the event; new sponsor sign ups; approximately 80 delegates in attendance on the day; press coverage the week after the event in Immobilien Zeitung, Germany's biggest real estate publication
FUN FACTS - my first client; project delivered in five weeks, from initial conversation to the day of the event; drank so much coffee to get the website done that our Nespresso machine packed in; listened to a silly number of synthwave playlists on Spotify; got to go to Berlin for three days; got hired to do the same again for the 2019 Symposium; started learning German. "Bis bald!"
The 40 Percent Symposium is a leading European real estate and sustainability event, now in its 7th year.
In early March, I received a call from John Pike, the Founder and owner of the Symposium, asking if I was interested and available to help market the 2018 Symposium in Berlin.
The catch? The event was just five weeks away! With only 11 people registered to attend, and a truly awful event website, there was a lot of work to do in a short space of time.
The old logo was effectively the whole visual brand. There was no primary or secondary colour palette, or any associated iconography or other design elements. As you can see, it did not really visualise real estate in any way.
For the first time, the 2018 Symposium was focusing on property technology - PropTech - and disruption and innovation within the commercial real estate sector.
A pity then, that the website looked as if it was about fifteen years old and more befitting of an accountants' annual get together (sorry, accountants). In short, there was nothing about the old site at all that spoke to the theme of the event.
Take a look for yourself, here are a few screenshots:
Although the client's main request was for me to update the website and promote the event in order to secure more bookings, I went a step further by also giving the Symposium a brand refresh. I would not have been happy building a new website using the old logo and no additional colours or design assets to make use of.
So, my team and I brought the brand into 2018, giving it a modern, eye-catching new logo, colour palette, and associated iconography. From there, everything else flowed naturally, and I was able to design a website that used event website best practices, all focused on telling the delegate exactly what they need to know, and driving them towards the booking page.
The event itself was a great success, with approximately 80 delegates in attendance, national press coverage, multiple positive delegate feedback forms, and several sponsors and speakers already confirming their interest in attending again next year.
For the new logo, we used a vibrant blue and purple colour palette, contrasted with a more neutral grey.
The building icons were a welcome addition, simultaneously communicating the themes of real estate and digital technologies.
The modern, broken font used for the word 'Symposium' helps to convey the theme of disruption / disruptive tech associated with PropTech.