The Heights

ROLES | Branding strategist, graphic designer, marketing

Overview

The Heights Merchants Association BIA is a Business Improvement Area in Burnaby that consists more than 330 merchants. The HMA is responsible for promoting the heights as well as proving services to all of its merchants. These services consist of street clean up, and merchant needs such as marketing and promotions. Moreover, the HMA contributes to the community by hosting and participating in wide variety of events such as Hat off Day, Light up the Heights, Giro di Burnaby, and many more.

I was hired as a Digital Graphics and Video Assistant, however my role and the projects that I was assigned to were wide ranging. I made updates on the website, designed posters for different events, created templates for social media posts as well as the appropriate captions for posts, contacted 80 + merchants to collect sponsorships, created social media contest, and visited over 200 merchants by hand delivering materials. All of these together helped me to get a sense of the community that exists in this neighbourhood and it introduced me to the culture surrounding this environment. This helped me to get a sense of the heights audience and be able to provide content and designs that are suitable for this community.

process

One of the major projects that I worked on was the branding of “Crave the Heights”, which is one of the events that HMA hosts throughout the year. Crave the Heights is a friendly neighbourhood dining showcase in the Heights area. For this project, like any other, my team and I wrote out all of the tasks that was needed for this project and distributed them between ourselves. I was responsible for branding of this event, creating posters, redesigning merchant guide and participation forms, designing restaurant customized menus, designing both print and digital artwork, and drafting ads and branding materials. I decided to go for a more modern, simple, and aesthetic feeling for the branding of this event so that it would be more pleasing and effective in attacking people’s attention. Therefore, I created the poster using Adobe Illustrator and designed the poster so that everything is centered and it could be read from top to bottom. Also, I used one background image and played around with opacity in order to create visibility and hierarchy on the poster.

Ideation for poster

Final Poster

After designing the poster, I was assigned to designing digital and print artworks for our sponsors, which were BurnabyNow and Miss604. I was given 5 specific measurements for these artworks and they were all horizontal banners. I started creating these artworks using Adobe Illustrator. Since we had shorter amount of time for Crave the Heights event preparations, I didn’t have time to go to the participating merchants and take pictures of their food for these artworks. Therefore, I was limited to just using the same image that I used for the poster. I tried to keep the artworks similar to the poster, but simpler and with less content since these artworks were much smaller than the poster and they were mostly designed to catch attention and convey the event to a broader audience.

BurnabyNow artworks

Final design for BurnabyNow newspaper

Miss604 artworks

Final design for Miss604 website

RESULTS & TAKEAWAYS

The re-branding and the preparation of this event took about 2 months and it had a great result. Crave The Heights was promoted on Daily Hive Vancouver. Also, one of the restaurants that was participating in this event was invited on Global News. Moreover, Crave The Heights 2018 received a lot of attention and it was a successful event. One of my main takeaways from this project was that re-branding an event is a very time consuming and requires a lot of attention to details. It is very important keep some of the original feelings of the event and not to change it completely because it would seem like a different event.

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