Custom Badges Help Create the Perfect Event
During an event, people will reference event badges hundreds of times. Whether it is to connect with other attendees, get admission to special events or to enter restricted areas, they aren’t going anywhere without a badge. This unique identification is the first thing attendees see at an event. It is a great way to help your introvert attendees engage with others at your event. There is an excitement when attendees arrive at an event and receive their custom badges. One that indicates they are proud of the decision and the financial commitment they made to attend. Remember, first impressions are very important, so make sure your custom badges are the best they can be. Here are seven tips that can help you create the perfect event badge.
Graphic Designers Make or Break Custom Badges
Please take no offense event planners and managers, but most of you are not graphics expert. A graphic designer and/or marketing person should be leading the badge design team. The best materials and prettiest colors cannot overcome poor design. You will still need to include your team in the design process. Be sure that any static information about the event be included in the design. Year of the event, lunch breaks or evening events can be included either on the front or back. Any variable data needs to be considered too, making sure that the designs allow for the unique information about attendees. Don’t underestimate the importance of the event badge printing.
Color is a Must
Never, never allow someone to convince you to have just black on white. This conveys the meeting isn’t that important and the attendees aren’t important. This is never the impression you want to leave. When color is the standard, you don’t want to demonstrate less than that. Remember the badge is a reflection of the event and some people keep these after the event is over as a reminder of their experience. The badge is king, at any event.
I can never say this too often, too small is really, really, bad. Small badges mean small graphics and text, which leads to readability issues and a poor impression. While I am sure carrying an 8” x 6” inch PVC badge around my neck is overkill, I am not a fan of small badges too. Anything smaller than a 4” x 3” is a mistake. My favorite, especially for first time events, is a 4” x 6” badge.
Another consideration is what font size is used. Don’t ever choose a small font that is unreadable from more than about 6 feet. Nothing is worse than squinting when trying to determine someone’s name or where they are from. Identification is why the badge exists, so make it readable with large fonts.
Once great design is created and your size decisions are complete, choose the right paper quality, type, holder and lanyards. My favorite material is a glossy heavy stock that tears easily from the printer. This colors pop and a glossy ink to match will read well. Other options like PVC badge with the use of labels can be attractive and remember to always consider printing on two sides. Two sided badges allow for additional information and is helpful if your badge gets turned around. However, having a lanyard attached in two places easily solves that. Be sure that your providers can match colors on the badge to the lanyard. Your graphics expert can solve this too.
Print What is Most Important
Choosing what information goes on the event’s custom badges is not easy. Here are a few thoughts to consider:
During the design process be sure that all information is considered before final designs are approved. The mistake design teams make, is not putting enough information on the badge or making the fonts too large and the mistake event planners make is putting too much information and making the fonts too small. Reconciling these differences during the badge design process is critical.
The first name is the most important thing people will read. Place the name on two lines with the first name as a larger font. Be sure your QR Code is a part of the design and do not put this on the back. Easy access to events, attendance, contact sharing are all done through QR Code.
Be sure to consider other information like attendee title, company, location and sometimes attendee type or group. The attendee type or group is usually at the bottom displaying, Attendee, Speaker and Exhibitor. Unique identifiers like group or experience level can also be used. Consider location, like city and state or country for international events and county for government events. It comes down to what unique information is needed. If it is not highly important, don’t print it.
The On-site Experience
Should badges be printed before or at the event? Never for large events and rarely for smaller meetings. Sifting through custom badges at a registration table is becoming less desirable. So many events, trainings and meeting are using digital check-in and badge printing today. Doing anything else is becoming unnecessary as attendees are beginning to expect the digital experience. With on-site custom badge printing, registration teams also enjoy the experience of greeting and engaging attendees, instead of looking for a badge.
Late Arrivals and Reprints
Having access to on-site printers offers the ability to provide name changes, add attendees and reprint lost or damaged badges. These added benefits are differentiators for events and are becoming required features for event badge printing. Be sure to consider on-site badge printing for even the smallest events to impress your attendees, add flexibility and empower your team.
Tackling the process of making a great event badge is no simple matter. However, with the right approach, team effort and good design, great event badges make your brand shine, save team resources and put smiles on your attendees face. Share these tips with your team and make the perfect event badge for your next event.