Beef creates identity for Sugarhill Festival

Creative digital group Beef has designed a full branding identity for boutique music festival Sugarhill Festival in Swindon, which takes place from 5-7 September

Beef lead designer Richard Windsor carried out basic branding work for the inaugural Sugarhill Festival last year in a freelance capacity. He now works for Beef, which won the business this year, through his relationship with Alison Byard of Alibi Consulting, which commissioned the project.

In a saturated market, the branding comes at a time when many boutique festivals are struggling with ticket sales. The threat of this proved to be a challenge, though Beef creative director Benjamin Hostler maintains that the organisers are ‘not worried, as it’s still small scale – with 8 000 to 10 000 people – and some big names’.

Acknowledging this challenge, Byard adds, ‘Admittedly, the first things to suffer in a downturn are leisure activities. That’s why it’s important your marketing message is strong.’

‘[At Sugarhill] there’s a local focus, with food and ale from the region and it’s very much a family event. We tried to be sympathetic to these things in the design,’ Hostler adds.

The brief was non-specific, which allowed Beef to work closely with Alibi. Hostler says, ‘It was really flexible. We guided them [Sugarhill].’

A series of designs is to be rolled out across different products in a brand-focused marketing strategy, including a website, which Hostler describes as ‘informative and accessible’ – a deliberate approach to distinguish it from the websites of other festivals.

The branding will be applied to a 12m-long banner by the M4, T-shirts (pictured), a festival programme and press advertisements in the national music press, Hostler says.

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