Noise—it's more than an audible problem when it comes to being noticed at a major event or conference. It's also a visual obstacle for many brands. But if you want your business's event signage to truly exceed your performance expectations, it's all about how you approach the design.

Here are five event signage strategies you should have in your backpocket.

Functional Signs

What's the likeliest problem your event signage will have? Getting lost in the sea of stand-up banners and hanging signs. So why not seek out other methods of gaining attention? Place your signage squarely where event attendees can't avoid being—ask organizers about putting signage on bathroom mirrors or even floor stickers on high-traffic staircases. Think of functions that every attendee will take part in—and make your signage a presence there.


Fearing your sign has too much to say for the pace at which event attendees walk past it? Consider a progressive, multi-sign approach. Build out a narrative flow that makes sense, sign to sign, and place two to three in succession. Maybe even play to the attention spans of your passersby. (i.e., "Stop here for awesome things." "Wait—you didn't stop." "Oh well—more awesome things for me."). Just remember to make them two-sided for bidirectional conference or event foot traffic flow.

Directional signs

When you're hosting or part of an event in a large, unfamiliar space, directional signage can be incredibly helpful to attendees. It also receives an inordinately larger amount of eyeballs at an event than signage that is clearly promotional or sales tools. So capitalize on this. Whether you're the event host or not, offer signage that directs visitors to the restrooms, water stations, charging stations, etc., and pair it with a clever or sly nod to your own brand's end goals. (i.e., "Charging Station Over There—Customer Re-Charging for Your Business Right Here.)

"Everything's a Sign" Signs

What do you bring to a tradeshow, conference or other event to represent your brand? A table, maybe an overhang, some chairs... are they serving a purpose beyond holding your bowl of pens, sporting your logo and providing support for attendee posteriors, respectively? If not, you're missing an opportunity. Put your messaging on your seating area, attach messaging directly to the surface of your table and take advantage of floor space in your designated booth area, too. If you're subtle about the voice of said messaging, every item you bring can serve a second purpose as additional signage. Find areas of your booth with which people are likeliest to interact.

Signs for Stillness

If you're struggling with the prospect of getting someone to stop and read your sign and the many amazing messages on it, consider requesting placement in places where stopping isn't necessary—because people are already still. Determine where in a venue is likely to have the most stillness for extended periods of time—such as cocktail hour tables, those aforementioned charging stations or even elevators or escalators—and position yourself squarely within eyeshot.

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