November 09, 2023
By Mike Fletcher

Developing a strong brand for your event can help build credibility, loyalty, recognition, and support. It helps attendees buy into your brand promise and allows them to feel they are making a statement about themselves by their very participation. But how exactly do you go about developing an event brand? And what are the characteristics and elements involved?

Let’s start with the basics before giving you many ideas, inspiration, and best practice advice on bringing your event brand to life.

What is Event Branding?


When an event is branded well, it takes on a life of its own whilst maintaining the essence or brand values of the organization behind it. Event marketing departments achieve this with a combination of digital branding (event apps, event website, email marketing) and onsite branding (exhibition stand, banners, badging, set and stage design, etc.). Those that do it exceptionally well add creativity, tone of voice, plus a trusted delegate experience to achieve a must-attend event.

Think MWC Barcelona, organized by the leading industry trade body for the mobile sector, or Dreamforce in San Francisco, hosted by Salesforce – a cloud-based software company. These are stand-alone, not-to-be-missed experiences, but if you scratch the surface, the companies who organize them are clearly visible, and their brand values are seamlessly aligned. Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference is another example, known for its creative sessions, streamlined design, hip entertainment, and modern innovations. These are all descriptors that could also apply to the Apple brand itself.

Your event may not carry the same kudos as an Apple conference, a Mobile World Congress, or a Dreamforce experience, but there are definitely things you can learn from the way that they and others like them fold company branding into their events.

Let’s begin.

Why is Event Branding Important?

Shaping how attendees, stakeholders, and sponsors remember your event and what values they associate with it is vital to the growth of the business and the long-term appeal of your event marketing.

When you brand your event, it helps delegates recall positive emotions relating to a product or service. They’ll associate your business with the live event experience, and if you’ve done your job well, that positive association will result in a repeat sale, new customer, or brand advocate.

Event Branding Ideas

An event’s brand is a combination of factors, which may include a logo, set and stage design, exhibition stands, social walls, banners, marketing collateral, goodie bags, and more. Branding is more important than ever before

Let’s look at five ideas.


Swag Bag

The gifts that delegates take home with them should reflect both the event brand and the brand values of the organization behind the event. Don’t settle for environmentally unfriendly plastic promotional items such as pens and toys. Instead, consider the event's brand messaging and tone and choose merchandise that will remind delegates of why they had such a positive event experience.

For example, if the tone of your event is relaxed and the messaging is inspirational, why not treat attendees to a calming branded herbal tea so they reflect on your brand whilst enjoying a cup?

If the tone of your event is supercharged and the messaging motivational, perhaps consider a branded ‘morning after’ wellness kit. Your delegates will thank you.

Social Wall

A branded social media wall is digital signage that is essentially a feed of aggregated live posts from various social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. The displayed live posts generally have an event hashtag associated with them, e.g., #CventCONNECT. The social media wall automatically refreshes for new posts attached to the hashtag, which encourages attendees to keep sharing their unique and exciting moments at the event. Creating an interesting social media campaign with catchy and innovative hashtags and displaying the user posts on the online feed makes attendees feel part of a tightly structured exclusive group. This generates more interactions and keeps the buzz going around your event. A social wall is also a great way to allow sponsors to announce giveaways, rewards, and contests through a mix of full-screen announcements and live tickers displayed throughout the event.

Event App

Mobile event app

According to a Mobile App Benchmark Report, overall event app adoption increased by 15% over the past year. Attendees not only actively seek out an event’s app, but they also expect every event to have a mobile event app that features rich content and branded functionality to enhance their attendee experience. Engagement is the ultimate goal of any mobile event app. A successful app is one that encourages in-app engagements, which drive in-person actions such as attendee networking, session interactions, or an increase in future event registrations, revenue or other important ROI metrics. CrowdCompass’ study found that ‘Superstar’ events are more likely to have an app that features 37 pages (19% higher than average); at least three maps; 15 push notifications (30% higher than average); at least three in-app banners; the ability to schedule appointments; session-level surveys and polls; gamification elements; and the means by which to post to a social event wall.

Set and stage design

By ensuring that your attendees maintain eye contact with your event brand by incorporating it into the set and stage design, you create a subconscious link, which will trigger positive feelings towards your company whenever that brand is recalled or recognized. If your event branding is circular, why not incorporate it into a circular stage design, creating a more inclusive, informal feel?

Or, if your event flows between different rooms, zones, and break-outs, make sure the branding is used to help attendees navigate their way around. Create a draft of your event venue layouts, and decide how to incorporate branding elements smartly.

Event logo

Your event logo may be small, but the more you use it creatively, the mightier it becomes. By projecting it onto the dance floor, use it as part of the event lighting. Or, feature it on screens between speaker sessions and as part of push notifications from your event app.

Incorporate your event logo into food, table centerpieces, decor, and drinks. The more creative you are, the more likely attendees will share images of your brand across social media.

Event Branding Elements

Your event website, social media, and email marketing campaigns represent valuable opportunities for communicating your event’s brand.

Event Website

Build a virtual event website

The event website should be an extension of the brand the event is for and not a completely separate entity. So even though it’s a microsite, it needs to be recognizable as belonging to the organization creating the event.

Keep these six things in mind when designing your event website; you won’t go far wrong.


Your organization’s logo is the most important and recognizable image that needs to be on your event website. Make sure the logo used is high resolution — you don’t want a grainy logo to be the first thing a potential attendee sees. It doesn’t need to be the biggest element on the page, but it does need to be there. Adding a logo to the header or top of the page will ensure that website visitors see it. If your event has a logo and your company has a different one, put both on the website.

Color scheme

Most likely, your event color scheme aligns in some way with your logo or your company brand colors. This is not the time to deviate from your brand palette and try a crazy combination of fuchsia and neon yellow (unless those happen to be your company colors).

Keeping website colors the same or in the same theme, as company colors will make your website recognizably aligned with your brand.


Some sites only offer a limited selection of fonts to choose from. Think past the default and try to find a font that most closely matches your standard company font. Your attendees are used to seeing and associating your unique font with your brand. Don’t make them wonder why your event website features Comic Sans when your company font is Gotham.


Don’t overcomplicate your layout. While you may be able to add in lots of graphics, sidebars, and design, keep it simple. Don’t be afraid of white or empty space. Information stands out more when the design or too much text isn’t overcrowded and overshadowing it. Make the main information the star of the show.


Make sure images are high enough resolution. Different screens have different resolutions, and what looks good on a mobile device might look fuzzy on a large monitor. The quality of the website reflects your company brand. If the resolution of the image you plan to use is not high enough, it might be better not to use it altogether than to risk providing the visitor a less-than-perfect viewing experience.


Who is this event attracting? What type of person does your company reach? Keep your ideal customer as well as your company’s branding in mind when writing copy for the website. If you’re planning a serious conference, speak professionally. Don’t use big words, sterile descriptions, or abbreviations if your company tone is casual.

Email Marketing

Event marketers use email marketing to reach out directly to prospective attendees, potential sponsors, speakers, and partners. Once these prospects have signed up or registered for your event, email will remain a primary communications tool until everyone has downloaded the event app and begun engaging with app notifications. Given the important role email plays in the build-up to your event, the event’s branding must be incorporated into any email marketing template. This means that similar to your event website, you’ll want to showcase event brand colors, fonts, logos, and themes in the design of your email campaigns. Ensure that the place you’re sending the reader (probably your event’s registration page) also reflects the email design. Discover more email marketing examples for inspiration. 

An event registration solution lets you set up and maintain consistent branding across your emails, registration page, and mobile event app. Once your templates are set up, keep the copy simple. Leave detailed information and heavy text for your branded registration or website landing page. The “keep it simple” rule also applies to your Call to Action (i.e., what action you want the recipient to take after reading the email). It should be as simple as “Register Now!” making it very clear to the reader.

Pro tip: Subscribe to events you admire. Pay close attention to how often you receive emails for that event, what the content of the email is, and whether the subject line is intriguing enough for you to open the email and click through.

Social Media

Photo Capture at Events

It’s important to start a social campaign early on in the event planning process so that you can introduce the brand, build FOMO and drive awareness of event content. Brainstorm and decide on one hashtag for your event and push this hashtag on all of your event collateral and touchpoints. This hashtag will ensure that your social media campaigns are all tied together and will help potential attendees find your social channels more quickly. By introducing a hashtag, all your social media initiatives and attendee interactions will be collated within a single trending topic, which can also be broadcast onto a social wall. It will also help you and attendees share event-related content more easily and track everything that’s relevant to your event.

Don’t forget to integrate a social share widget on all your marketing communications, including emails and web pages, to make sharing a “single-click” task. By creating a Facebook event, users can share that they are either interested in attending or attending, a status that also pops up on their followers’ News Feeds, ultimately increasing your event’s reach. This also lets prospective attendees know who else has already registered, which could give them the boost they need to register. Encourage event speakers also to share the event with their social media followers (using the event hashtag, of course!)

Event Promotion

The most effective way to promote your event brand is through multi-channel activity and a series of coordinated campaigns. These can range from email marketing to social content, newsletters, digital marketing, and PR. If you’ve staged the event before, tap into existing content assets in order to show this year’s potential attendees the excitement, atmosphere, and quality of previous years. This could take the form of a promotional highlights video, positive attendee testimonials, photography, and feedback form results.

Use the blog channel on your company’s website to write posts or upload a video that speaks about your event. Fresh long-form content will improve the site’s SEO, drive attendee engagement, and help build your social following. You could interview those speakers lined up for this year, discuss outcomes from previous years, and include a relevant call-to-action such as ‘book now’ or ‘secure your place today.' Once posted, make sure you share these blog posts across all social channels and include them in any targeted PR campaign or newsletters.

Make sure that your event is also highlighted as part of your email signature. It’s a strategy that is a low effort but potentially high reward due to the number of emails you send every day. As part of your email signature, embed a link to your event’s registration page and use the brand logo to make it stand out.

When promoting your event across social media, also consider the following tactics:

Plan your content

If a primary objective is to encourage attendees to download the event app or build excitement around a destination or speaker line-up, you may decide to prioritize visuals, videos, testimonials, and competition mechanics. Content asset variety is important in order to stand out, increase reach and drive engagement.

A shared content calendar will allow you to plan your posting timeline and structure your posts according to objectives, formats, themes, key announcements, and other event-related specifics. When discussing other elements of your content calendar, the tone of voice, brand guidelines, and ‘wording types’ for social posts should be explored and agreed upon in workshops or team meetings.

Invest in paid social

With a small investment, you can target and boost some core branded messaging about your event to the specific audience of your choice by having a designed post appear on their LinkedIn or Facebook newsfeeds. You can also set up sponsored tweets or Instagram posts depending on where your audience exists.

Develop content

Discover what content commands the most engagement on each of your social media platforms against each of the themes, objectives, and key moments included on your content calendar. For example, if you’ve chosen to use social polls to gauge opinion or vote for certain event elements, are you getting more responses from Facebook or Twitter polls? How do the time of day, the wording of the poll, and the visuals used impact poll response?

Track results

Social media analytics provide swathes of data on post-performance, which may keep the marketing team happy. But analytics should also be used to assess behavioral insights into areas such as user response, best times of day to post, tone of voice, and what types of content you should be doing more of. Understanding the social media behaviors of your event audience will ensure that they share your brand messaging and join in your event conversations.

Event Sponsorship

Cvent CONNECT Sponsor Party

With the world fully pivoting towards digital, a new vista of branding options has opened up for event sponsors and partners through digital signage and mobile event apps. To ensure sponsors get the most from their investment, here are some creative branding ideas you could recommend.

Photo stands

Branded photo stands are a great way to provide more visibility of your sponsor's names and logos. Attendees can use different props and signs and take pictures to share on social media. Your sponsors are then promoted beyond your event as images are viewed and shared by a wider audience. This automatically translates into more brand awareness for your sponsors, which should translate into more opportunities.

Virtual reality

VR is no longer a fad or a technology only foreseeable in the distant future. VR headsets like Oculus Go and HTC Vive, are used successfully in the events industry to provide rich and interactive experiences to attendees. There is so much you can do with AR and VR.

Sponsors can leverage the power of VR to create an immersive product demo or to showcase their services in a nicely designed video package. This use of technology is sure to pique the interest of attendees.

Branded wraps

Does your venue have a grand entrance? Or maybe a few lifts or escalators you hadn’t really given a second thought to? Using an intriguing wrap can surprise attendees and offer your sponsors the space to do something creative.

Branded wraps could also act as the grand reveal, following digital signage teasers as attendees make their way through the venue. Or why not offer sponsors some strategically placed wrapped vehicles in front of the venue?

Branded Wi-Fi

WiFi access is essential for the vast majority of events, especially if you want to encourage people to engage with your event on social media or live stream speeches or panels. A Wi-Fi-branded sponsorship package allows a brand to get in front of every attendee who logs on.

Virtual Event Branding

Your virtual event branding relies heavily on your event's website or platform. You can communicate so much about your event through your website's tone, colors, pictures, and writing. With Cvent's event website tool, you can create a branded website without even knowing how to code. Our Attendee Hub is also completely customizable to your brand, allowing you to communicate your event's message to your attendees clearly. 

Key takeaways and best practices

Developing a good brand strategy will help you design and promote your event more effectively regardless of event type.

To tie it all together, here are some final things to keep in mind.

  • Consider the brand promise of the event and incorporate it into the design and messaging. Make sure that it’s unique, meaningful, authentic, and consistent across every attendee touchpoint.
  • The more a brand promise resonates with event attendees, the more they’ll buy into what your event sets out to deliver.
  • When designing your event brand, what are your event's fonts, colors, logos, and themes? Ensure that these are also consistent across social media, websites, the event app, email, and newsletter marketing, promotional giveaways, set and stage design, badges, banners, and all event collateral.

Finally, don’t go at it alone. Share the event branding with sponsors, speakers, and other teams within the company and propose joined-up promotional ideas to ensure that you take full advantage of their wide networks.

Mike Fletcher

Mike Fletcher

Mike has been writing about the meetings and events industry for almost 20 years as a former editor at Haymarket Media Group, and then as a freelance writer and editor.

He currently runs his own content agency, Slippy Media, catering for a wide-range of client requirements, including social strategy, long-form, event photography, event videography, reports, blogs and ghost-written material.

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