Working in tandem with long-term client, Benson, Grant Design Collaborative conceived TouchPoints, an immersive, multi-act event exploring how sensorial experience can encourage new ways of thinking about marketing and consumer engagement in the multifamily industry. Collaborating with event partners HP, Neenah Paper and Sappi, Grant designed an event that inspired marketing managers to make deeper connections with prospects and residents through new touchpoints in print, signage, promotions and branded experiences. According to Benson’s CEO, Brian Benson, “Our ROI in Grant Design Collaborative’s TouchPoints experience has been outstanding. Grant’s creative work speaks for itself, but their strategic approach is unrivaled, as evidenced by this unique event. The firm’s expertise advances our brand and promotes Benson’s story with thought-provoking design and messaging.”
“When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”
Inspired by this quote from Max Planck, the German physicist and founder of quantum physics, Grant turned to Benson’s portfolio to reimagine their products and services. Every element of TouchPoints was produced by Benson and all components were selected from the current offerings of their primary business units: Signs, Prints, Promos, Wears and Designs.
From provocative e-blasts to sleek signage, attention to detail and process were critical to the program and its promotional components. Whether it was the feel of fine paper and raised ink, the shimmer of metallic sleeking or three-dimensional signage, Grant encouraged event attendees to experience different methods to enhance communication by awakening the senses to strengthen their brand revenue. “A vibrant yellow color was used throughout touchpoint components for its warmth, cheerfulness and power to increase mental activity and energy. Yellow is widely considered to help activate the memory, encourage communication, enhance vision, build confidence and stimulate the nervous system. It was a bold expression of Benson’s artistic power and intellect reflected in their work and culture,” explains Grant Design Collaborative Creative Director, Matt DeFrain.
A late afternoon rendezvous for the event provided guests a respite from the deadlines and demands of their routine office environment. It was important guests come with an open mind, fresh perspective and curious anticipation. After check-in and welcoming libations, guests were placed in small groups and whisked away to three distinct experiences by event partners HP, Neenah and Sappi.
Each presentation included a creative food and wine pairing to foster sensory enhancements. According to DeFrain, “The integrated experience was designed as an adventure to stretch the audience’s imagination with many unexpected sensorial gestures along the way.”
Grant Design Collaborative’s Senior Designer, Elizabeth Seidle, adds, “The flow of the tour and interactive sessions with our event partners worked perfectly to inform and entertain guests while allowing them to explore Benson’s unique environment. It personified the experience of joy and surprise that Benson brings to their clients’ communities through inspired collaboration.”
The heady and inspiring presentations flowed into the cathartic atmosphere of Luster as all parties reconvened for signature cocktails and innovative cuisine, inspired house beats, and additional touchpoints to the senses.
As guests mingled and discussed their event experience, DJ Mike Zarin settled into a groove that fused musical touchpoints from eclectic genres into a sleek, contemporary mix. Atlanta photographer, Guy Welch of Ground Floor Studios, documented the entire event for future touchpoints.
“The entire experience was designed and choreographed to excite and surprise, offering something new around every corner,” says Grant Design Collaborative’s Senior Designer, Kurt Seidle. “Guests lingered well into the evening enjoying a rich mix of sights, sounds and flavors amid the company of peers and true partners. Attendees even took selfies in front of custom signs and displays and posted their excitement and appreciation on social media. TouchPoints struck a perfect balance of business and pleasure.”
At the close of the event, Benson’s clients were presented with personalized swag bags embroidered with their names and filled with enticing sample touchpoints, including gift cards in custom sleeves, playful door hangers, and delectable recipe cards.
According to Grant Design Collaborative’s President and Chief Creative Officer, Bill Grant, “We encourage everyone to think creatively and conceptually about client engagement, designing beyond word and image to create personal and sensorial experiences. TouchPoints was an apt reminder, while screens and devices offer instant gratification, nothing can match the power of well-crafted human experiences to create memorable brand connections.”