Conference organizers always try to find ways to make their events unique and memorable, but there are some things which should be standard. Attendees, particularly those who might have had to deal with unpredictable flights or transportation/hotel issues, will always appreciate a streamlined check in process. It's a process where Occam's Razor is well-applied: the simpler, the better. This definitely goes for conference materials, like the conference badge.
Some conference materials are necessary evils: the plethora of paper collateral from sponsors, the (usually) hideous conference bag, and sometimes a conference tee designated to become bottom-drawer filler. Or, if you attend a lot of technology conferences like I do, it's worn daily by some of the less hygienic attendees for the conference duration. All things considered, most of these materials are expendable. It makes sense to refocus on the one thing that attendees will use and reuse: the conference badge, or name badge. Here are some tips to create a badge worth its salt. Or at least worth the irritation of remembering it daily. And, when the conference is over and the badge has served its purpose, Sunrise Packaging conference name badges are eco-friendly and completely biodegradable!
What Do Attendees Want in a Conference Badge
Choosing the style of a conference name badge can depend by industry. Tech conferences, which tend to be slightly more informal, typically use lanyards with the badge hanging around the midsection. If this is the route you want to go, be considerate of the variety of shapes your attendees come in (male, female, proportions, etc). Choose a lanyard with adjustable sizes so they can choose where it should sit.
If the conference is an industry which tends to be more formal, consider a simpler conference badge that's more of a traditional name tag with magnetic backing. There's little more annoying than putting holes in an expensive blouse or suit. Not to mention that it might hurt the fabric. Name tags also tend to be a little more discreet and elegant.
Design Around Attendee's First Names
What's the purpose of a conference badge? To identify the attendee as an attendee and to share their name/affiliation with folks. If space is at a premium, consider cutting last names. Some attendees also might not feel comfortable sharing their full name with rooms of strangers (networking aside). Access Event Solutions recommends the following hierarchy:
First Name (largest font)
Last Name (slightly smaller font than first name)
Company name/title (slightly smaller font than last name)
Other information (you get the drift)
What Else Might Attendees Want in a Conference Badge
If you go the magnetic, name tag route, you're probably maxed out on space after the above. However, if you go the lanyard route, the back of the conference badge is a great spot for additional information, like:
- Conference schedule.
- Wifi access information.
- Conference hashtags/notable social channels.
- Sponsor information (understandable to *want* to put it on the front, but lets be real: no one wants it there)
- Embedding RFID or NFC technology within the layers of a conference badge substrate. Attendees can scan their badge to win prizes, session room counts, supply contact information to enabled vendors...the possibilities are endless.
For maximum readability, print information on the back of a lanyard upside down!
Make a Conference Badge Attendees Want to Keep
Name tags might not serve many purposes after the conference, unless they're well-designed and not obtrusively tied to the event. Keep your conference badge design simple, and attendees will appreciate the streamlined effort. Particularly if they're already a little jet-lagged.