Focus on Events Sites

When you are promoting an event, the right website can prove invaluable in spreading the word and getting bums on seats. Getting the design right is crucial, as there only a brief window of opportunity to get your message out there before the event takes place. Whether you are promoting a web design conference, a concert of a film festival, you will be competing with a lot of rival attractions. Most of us only have limited time spare, not to mention the forbidding cost of tickets, travel, accommodation and other expenses so your website needs to work hard in order to make your event stand out. Even if people are getting their bosses to pay, they still need to convince them that it is a valuable use of the firms resources and not just a free holiday!

Your design needs to create a clear brand for the event, distinguishing it clearly form other, similar ones. It must convey why it is critical that everyone in the industry attends it. Most importantly, it should create an instant sense of atmosphere and excitement around the event. Yes, all the need-to-know facts need to be present and correct where the event will be held, on what dates, who will be speaking and at what time, etc. But this is not your primary aim. Your fundamental objective should be to create an emotional response from the visitor, to convince they absolutely have to be there.

One thing websites in general often lose track of is that mass appeal is not always necessary for success, it I all about targeting the audience, however niche. With an event website, this is more immediately obvious. The need to convert people to paying customers reminds us of the focus websites can and should have.


1) The Dublin Detour is and international touch rugby and netball tournament. The goal of its website is not to attract as much traffic as possible, but as many paying customers as possible. As such its branding, imagery, and words are all crafted to appeal to the target audience.


2) The dynamic visuals of the future Web Design conference site appeal to those in the web design industry, and work hard to portray FoWD as a cool, must-attend event.


3) The site for the 2008 Virgin Mobile Festival connect with festival goers, on a level beyond the norm, establishing this as the kind of event they would not want to miss.


4) The micro Sundance Film Festival plays into the events grass roots traditions with a slightly rough and gritty design, A great example of keeping things simple and functional while still conveying a strong brand.


5) The web stock 2009 conference site demonstrates a much more subtle approach to the overall design, again meshing with the values of the target audience.


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