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ISEA - ImagenFest

Creating an engaging omnichannel attendee experience

HUMAN EXPERIENCE | COMMUNICATION | VISUAL IDENTITY

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Context

ISEA is one of the most important art and technology events worldwide. In 2027, ISEA was hosted for the first time by a Latin American city, Manizales. For this edition, ISEA was organized together with the Internationa Image Festival (ImagenFest) around the topic of Bio-creation & Peace, an invitation to reflect on the contributions from art, design, science and technology as alternatives of respect for biodiversity and peaceful coexistence between communities and their environment. 

 

This unique event gathers artists, designers, academics and creatives aiming to provide a platform for collaboration, networking, knowledge exchange and diffusion of the most recent digital design and artistic creations and research results. 

 

The event combines academic activities such as 

  • Forums

  • Keynote presentations

  • Interactive installations

  • Digital art exhibitions

  • Concerts

  • Workshops 

  • Networking activities.

ORGANISATIONS 

University of Caldas 

International Image Festival 

International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA)

MY ROLE

Design and Communication Lead. 

 

RESPONSIBILITIES 

  • Conducting co-creation sessions with stakeholders and team members to generate and refine concepts for the attendee experience 

  • Co-creating an omnichannel attendee experience and service blueprint 

  • Defining content strategy and appropriate channels and touchpoints for both physical and digital interactions 

  • Overseeing a multidisciplinary team of 7+ people in executing the marketing plan and designing collateral materials 

  • Creating presentations and reports for stakeholders

THE CHALLENGE

Developing an omnichannel attendee experience for the entire event lifecycle.

 

HIGH-LEVEL GOALS

  • Developing and delivering the attendee experience strategy across all channels 

  • Creating content and collateral design for each journey touchpoint 

  • Coordinating marketing, communication and design efforts across physical and digital touchpoints 

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Approach

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DISCOVERY & RESEARCH

In the discovery & research phase, we had several exploratory sessions with stakeholders to understand their goals, objectives and challenges.

 

We analysed feedback from previous events and conducted interviews with potential attendees and participants to gain a deep understanding of the target audience, their objectives and constraints.

 

The team defined the event's key objectives and identified four personas, their preferences, motivations, and expectations, which informed the subsequent strategic and design decisions.

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KEY PROJECT
OBJECTIVES

Experience 

Create an engaging omnichannel attendee experience that seamlessly integrates physical and digital spaces across the entire event lifecycle.

Attendance

Increase event attendance, engagement, and satisfaction (compared to previous editions of the event).

Networking

Encourage networking, cross-disciplinary collaboration and knowledge exchange among attendees from diverse backgrounds.

Talent

Promote and showcase emerging design, art, and technology research, developments and talent. 

Culture

Encourage attendees to experience the local culture and traditions. 

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TARGET
AUDIENCE

Researchers and students

In design, art, and technology fields

Creative entrepreneurs and innovators

Engineers, VR/AR developers, video mapping creators

Artists and Design practitioners

Digital designers, architects, visual artists

 

Design and art enthusiasts

STRATEGY &PLANNING

In the strategy and planning phase, we conducted several co-creation sessions with the organising team (i.e., logistics, production, service) to generate and refine concepts for the attendee experience. 

 

The event journey was mapped, encompassing the call for proposals, pre-event activities, event execution, and post-event interactions. Key touchpoints and interactions were identified for both physical and digital channels. As an output, a service blueprint was developed for each event stage and refined through iterations based on feedback received from stakeholders and changing requirements from the organisation and partners. 

 

The blueprint included elements such as the registration process, session scheduling, networking opportunities and logistical aspects (i.e., venue setup and technical requirements). The blueprint acted as a roadmap to the event’s core team to facilitate coordination among different sub-teams (technical, logistics, service) and a memorable attendee experience.

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Solution

To ensure an omnichannel attendee experience, the team executed the following interconnected strategies:

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Design &
Visual Identity

The main topic of the event was Bio-creation and Peace. For this reason, the designer Alex Cano used a flower illustration obtained from the illustrations of the botanical expedition and then processed by digital tools to represent the interconnection between biology and data and the convergence of design, art and technology. 

The team worked closely to develop a cohesive brand identity for the event. The chosen colour palette, typography, and graphic elements were consistent across all channels and touchpoints to establish a strong and recognizable brand presence.

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WEBSITE DESIGN

The website served as the central hub for information, proposals submission and registration. The team focused on creating an intuitive and user-friendly interface that catered to the audience segments.

 

The team created a comprehensive content strategy for each stage of the event and updated the content and material on the website accordingly and based on feedback received from participants and stakeholders.

KEY FEATURES

  • Personalized event schedule 

  • Live streaming and on-demand access to event sessions

  • Social media integration 

  • Speaker profiles and session descriptions

  • Ticket purchasing and registration options

  • (Interactive) maps and floor plans of the venues

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PHYSICAL COLLATERAL DESIGN

Beyond digital channels, the team designed physical collateral for several channels throughout the entire event lifecycle. This included printed materials such as event brochures, signage, and badges.

 

The design team ensured that these materials reflected the event’s brand identity and maintained a seamless visual experience with the digital elements.

 

QR codes were implemented in most of the printing materials to direct users to the event's website, making it easier to register for the event and find information and resources.

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Marketing & Communication

To ensure a seamless and engaging experience for attendees, the team created an omnichannel marketing plan and content strategy that integrates traditional and digital marketing channels throughout the entire event lifecycle.

We identified the most effective channels and key message themes for each touchpoint and ensured consistent messaging (key message themes) and visual identity (logos, colour palette, typography) across channels. 

The team continuously monitored the registration progress and adjusted the marketing plan and content accordingly. 

Due to the non-profit nature of the event, most of the marketing was organic. The event leveraged its networks and partnerships with national and international universities, art galleries, cultural institutions and creative spaces to co-create content and promote the event within the target community.

SOCIAL MEDIA ENGAGEMENT

A robust social media strategy was implemented to generate buzz and engage the target audience before, during, and after the event. We used both the accounts of ISEA and ImagenFest. The strategy encouraged audience participation, generated excitement, and facilitated conversations around the event's topics.

The content for social media included behind-the-scenes glimpses, speaker interviews, design challenges and regular updates on speakers, sessions, and event highlights.

Attendees were encouraged to share their experiences on social media using the event hashtags, fostering networking and extending the event’s reach.

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OFFLINE MARKETING
& MEDIA

To complement the digital initiatives,  the team employed offline marketing tactics and media coverage, reaching a broader audience. 

  • Print collateral distributed in strategic locations (universities, design studios, technology hubs)

  • Collaborations with (local) universities, galleries and art spaces for joint promotions

  • Public relations efforts to secure media coverage in design and technology publications

  • Guest appearances and interviews on TV and radio shows

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EMAIL MARKETING CAMPAIGN

The team implemented an email marketing campaign to maintain regular and consistent communication with (potential) participants and attendees. The team created segmented emails that provided updates, announcements, exclusive offers, reminders about upcoming deadlines and logistic information.

 

Additionally, email surveys were used to gather feedback after the event to further tailor the event experience to attendees' needs for upcoming event versions.

  • Pre-event teaser emails to build anticipation 

  • Event announcements and reminders

  • Exclusive offers and discounts for early bird registration

  • Post-event follow-ups with highlights and access to resources and materials

  • Surveys and feedback requests to gather participant insights

On-site Attendee Experience

The event venues and activities were designed to provide an interactive experience, facilitate networking and showcase Colombia’s culture and traditions. 

  • Immersive installations and art exhibitions showcasing cutting-edge design, art and technology collaborations

  • Interactive workshops and hands-on experiences for participants to engage with emerging tools and methodologies

  • Networking lounges and areas for participants to connect and collaborate

  • Cultural city tours and gastronomic experiences

  • Live performances by renowned artists, designers and thought leaders

  • Keynote presentations by thought leaders 

  • Interactive art exhibitions in public spaces

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POST-EVENT
ENGAGEMENT

After the conference concluded, the team continued to engage attendees through various channels.  Recorded event sessions and exclusive content were shared via email, social media and the event website.

 

Social media was also leveraged to share highlights, videos, and interviews from the event, keeping the conversation alive and continue engaging attendees for coming versions of the event.

HAVE A LOOK AT THE AFTER MOVIE

Evaluation

During the pre-event and event execution stages, the team continuously evaluated and refined the attendee experience, content and marketing based on (digital performance) and feedback from attendees and stakeholders.

Surveys and qualitative feedback were used to measure attendee satisfaction and engagement and the overall success of the omnichannel strategy. Based on this data, the team created recommendations for future improvements.

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Impact

The event successfully brought together a diverse audience, promoting cross-disciplinary collaboration, networking and knowledge exchange. Attendees provided positive feedback on the immersive experiences, interactive exhibitions, and networking opportunities.

Takeaways

Service Blueprinting is not set in stone 

The blueprint acted as a guide for various sub-teams, enabling effective coordination. However, after changing stakeholders' requirements and the feedback of attendees, we uncovered gaps that needed to be solved fast. We refined the blueprint multiple times to ensure we delivered a memorable experience for attendees across all channels. 

 

Not only digital

Offline marketing tactics, such as print collateral, collaborations with local institutions, and public relations efforts, can complement digital initiatives and reach a broader audience. Integrating traditional and digital marketing channels and leveraging the event´s partnerships and networks contributed to increased awareness, registration, and engagement.

Understanding the target audience 

Gaining a deep understanding of the target audience, needs and expectations was crucial for designing a cohesive experience. This information helped us in tailoring the events content, channels and touchpoints that resonate with the different personas we identified. 

Design, test, and iterate

Regular evaluation of attendee behaviour, engagement metrics, and feedback throughout the event lifecycle is essential for identifying areas of improvement and refining the attendee experience. Being open to iterative processes and adapting ways of working is crucial in the dynamic landscape of an event. 

 

Collaboration is key 

Close collaboration with the production team, stakeholders, and partners from both ISEA and the International Image Festival ensured the alignment of goals, effective communication, and successful execution of the event. Coordinated efforts and a unified vision contributed to an engaging attendee experience.

Creating a community 

Continuing engagement with attendees post-event through sharing recorded sessions, exclusive content, and highlights through email, social media, and the event website helps sustain the conversation and foster a community.

 

TEAM

Felipe Londoño - Director 

Paula López - General Producer 

Cristina Sabogal - Producer 

Manuela Castaño - Executive producer 

Alexander Cano - Designer poster ISEA2017 

Camilo Marín - Graphic designer 

Luis Alvarez - Digital designer

Julián Patiño - (Motion) graphic designer   

Jefry Rojas - Graphic designer

Luis Osorio - Graphic designer 

Colectivo Dinámico - Environmental design 

Maria Alejandra Gómez - Press coordination 

Mariana Valencia - Content coordinator 

Roxane Delage - Content assistant

Sergio Flórez - Developer 

Yolima Sánchez - Production design 

Sebastian Dolán - Video producer

Camila Hurtado - Design and Communication Lead

Photo Credits: International Image Festival

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