Utility Week LiveDesigning an experiential brand
for the UK’s utilities leaders

Our partnership and investment with UnitedUs has enabled us to turn a solid if unspectacular event, into a brand that’s elevated above its competitors, enabling us to deliver a vibrant and must-attend event that’s growing year-on-year.

Ben Parker, Head of Brand Marketing

Utility Week Live is the UK’s leading utility industry exhibition, brought to the sector by the experts at Faversham House and held at the NEC Birmingham every May. Looking to attract the best partners, exhibitors and attendees, while also creating an experience that is as engaging and relevant as possible, each year we’ve brought to life the concept that underpins the event.

In order to tap into the cultural zeitgeist, and the evolving sector, it’s important that the show theme evolves each year in response. From the positive disruption this caused in 2018, which shifted the sector into a transition period in 2019, allowing them to begin speculating around the Utility of the Future, for the upcoming 2020 event. Just as the sector and show grow each year, so must the brand’s visualisation. Which is why we balance creative continuity within the brand, as well as an ownable identity for each changing year, in order to increase sponsorship, exhibitor and engagement targets, while creating an identity which is flexible enough to withstand each year’s evolvement, multi-channel campaigns, and a diverse event.

ownable
identity

for each changing year

To achieve this we created sub-logos to showcase each year’s theme across different marketing collateral, while protecting and elevating the parent brand. For 2018, we wanted to focus more on digital and video content, so we utilised bold, energetic typography and image snapshots to physically disrupt the viewer through its placement in print and by incorporating animation across digital outputs.

UnitedUs have played an integral part in this success story with the visual development and guardianship of the Utility Week Live brand, plus the campaign-specific visual concepts and assets deployed as part of the visitor acquisition campaigns.

Ben Parker, Head of Brand Marketing

Transitioning the brand into 2019 (see what we did there), meant utilising a gradient colour palette in the visualisation. Departing from the traditional colours associated with the utility sector, this fresh approach showcases development and positivity. While the animated version gives a real energy and sense of progression, creating a more engaging visual outcome to be utilised across the campaign and event. The printed direct mail piece used fluorescent inks to replicate the vibrancy of the gradients on screen, to provide a really stand-out piece to attract visitors to the Hackathon event at the show.

Utility Week Live 2019 Instagram Story 3
Utility Week Live 2019 Instagram Story 2
Utility Week Live 2019 Instagram Story 1

We also had a greater influence on the experience of attendees at the show. We collaborated with the exhibition team to create stands, signage, social areas and interactions around the floor space to create a cohesive experience that built on the pre-show marketing.

Utility Week Live 2019 Show Graphics Design
Utility Week Live 2019 Show Graphics

two prestigious EN Indies Award wins

This year, we wanted to build upon previous success, while creating a future-focused sub-brand that enabled Utility Week Live to own the “Utility of the Future” conversation. To do this we created a visual device that would act as a recognisable marker that could be expanded across larger campaigns, while acting as an icon of ownership.

Utility Week Live 2020 Billboard Design

But a brand doesn’t exist solely in its visualisation, it’s how you implement this in the experience and narrative of your identity to everyone who interacts with you. Which is why it was so important to ensure that we designed an experiential brand that could be implemented everywhere from navigating the event, to pre-show collateral and large format advertising.

And the results speak for themselves. With revisit numbers increased year on year by 25%, and exhibitor stand revenue up by 26%, it’s no surprise that Utility Week Live brand has grown into a seven-figure event attended by all of the UK’s leading utility businesses, firmly establishing itself as the annual must-attend event in its sector.

25% increase on revisits

26% increase in exhibition stand revenue

Best of all… if you go visit them on a Friday afternoon they serve you cold beer. A richly rewarding partnership, award winning campaign support and assets, and cold craft ale, what’s not to like?

Ben Parker, Head of Brand Marketing

utility week
live

Utility Week Live Case Study Footer

Deliverables:

  • Brand strategy
  • Photography
  • Print collateral
  • Brand guidelines
  • Visual identity
  • Digital marketing
  • Film
  • Illustration
  • Campaign Strategy

Sectors:

  • Professional services

Location:

  • Birmingham NEC, UK