Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Engage!12 The Breakers Recap :: Part 3

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Left to right: Billy Evers, Bryan Rafanelli (holding one of the branded recycled leather file folders containing conference info), Abby Larson, Tait Larson at registration

If you've been following the Engage!12 hashtag on Twitter or Instagram (over 2000 photos from this past week's event on Instagram alone!), you've probably seen some of the signature swag that this conference is known for. Heather, Susan and Nathan are the creative team behind the Engage!12 gifting and the owners of Gifts for the Good Life. I like to call them Geniuses for the Good Life. Because they are.

company branded pillows

If you pay attention to the interior design world, then you already know that honeycomb is the new chevron and laser-cut anything is a huge upcoming trend. Both of these made appearances throughout the branding that Gifts for the Good Life created for Engage at The Breakers.

orange juice boxes

stylish conference

Everything this team does is carefully thought out and customized for each occasion. For Engage!12 at the Mandarin Oriental in June they created the exclamation point logo in a fan shape and served up session note-taking goodies in a Bento Box as a nod to the Asian influences of the hotel. For this one at The Breakers in sunny Florida, they tweaked the logo to be a sun and session note-taking goodies were packaged in an orange juice carton complete with a scratch-n-sniff label and a subtle "recycle good ideas" logo on the bottom.

clipboards for conference notes

gifts for the good life engage!12

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Notes that photographer Nancy Ray took during my session.

My favorite thing however was that they paid close attention to who was in the room and created several different options for taking notes. Everyone received a clipboard with a pad of paper that was designed by Trisha Hay, the amazing graphic designer behind all ten Engage! events. Trisha made sure that the notepads had room for traditional notes as well as sketches for the more visual learners. It also had a space at the bottom for linear thinkers who like to make lists with bullet points and are all about the top takeaways.

branded ipad stylus

branded ipad cloth

Not everyone is a paper and pen type of person, however. Five years ago we started really seeing laptops replace notepads at conferences. Today those laptops have been traded in for iPads. Included in the note-taking goodies everyone received was a microfiber cloth -- perfect for glasses or touchscreens covered in fingerprint smudges -- and an iPad stylus that doubled as a pen. Regardless of your learning style, the Good Life geniuses had you covered.

Listening is one of the most important skills a company can cultivate and creating solutions based on how people behave -- especially if it's differently than you do -- allows you to surprise and delight your clients and customers at every turn.

conference swag bags

And as a bonus, if you completely knock it out of the park, you can confuse the TSA agents as well.


All photos courtesy Elan Artists, Scott Clark and Chellise Michael except Instagram notes photo courtesy Nancy Ray and TSA photo courtesy Ellen Black

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