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introduction Manchester has been a place where many musical geniuses and events have been born. From the iconic Hacienda nightclub to Oasis, the city is a forcefield of culture and inspiration. Branding is an important design feature in the music industry as it allows audiences to connect, relate to and invest in a artist or an events franchise. This publication focuses on the research into the branding of music events in Manchester as the city has so many current and popular events that can give the old one’s a run for their money.

The infamous PIN studios based in Manchester, are responsible for designing many events in the Manchester music scene. The studio create really interesting designs and branding concepts through both print and web. The company are responsible for branding music events such as The Parklife Weekender, The Warehouse Project and Now Wave, which are events that focus on house music and have a really interesting visual aesthetic.

concept The concept behind this research is to analyse three events in Manchester that PIN studio’s have been responsible for designing. These invents include, The Parklife Weekender., The Warehouse Project and Now Wave. The branding behind these music events are original, eye catching and appeal to their target audience and franchise. Through print and digital design such as websites, posters and merchandise.

The benefits of this research will enable a better understanding about the branding of music events and what it takes to create a strong branded image. This research will identify what these events have considered and how they can be applied to other branded designs. The aim behind this research is to produce and design a music event, with a strong and relatable aesthetic for a target audience.

branding Music

The Branding of music is an essential part of the events overall popularity. Music events create visual identities through branding to present themselves to the world with a consistent aesthetic approach. This enables audiences to engage with the event, to gain recognition and finally build a strong fan base. There are a multitude of ways in which music events create their brand image. The most recognised ways are through the following paragraphs.


The choice of a font is an important factor. When a consumer looks at a logo, printed or web based collateral they will relate that font to the brand and what it represents. If a hand rendered font is used it will connote a sense youth and target a younger audience.


Images in music branding create a sense of atmosphere for an event. The way the images are taken, the colour it is altered in and the placement of the image can allow the audiences to get an insite into what the event is about or going to be like.

branding Colour

The colour in the branding of music enables people to connect and relate to what the colour represents to them. A bright yellow and black in a logo could remind a audience of the Hacienda and those statement colours are a big fraction on what creates the brand. Colour choice can also determine the mood or feel of the event for the audience. Colours have significant psychological meanings to people, so a yellow could connote happiness, summer or warmth to a consumer.


The logo is one of the most important elements in creating an identity. Once a logo is created and recognised, it can be used across a multitude of material. The logo is what encompasses the brand in one image.


The size and scale of branded material has to be legible at any size to work across a set of platforms such as printed wristbands to t.shirts and be instantly recognisable. The size of branded items can span from a small button a to a large size billboard that promotes the event across a bus.

warehouse project

“The Warehouse Project gives you the immense feeling of being a part of something “ - Mix Magazine 2013

The Warehouse Project is a series of club nights organised in Greater Manchester, since 2006. Unlike most other clubs, it has a limited seasonal approach rather than running all year. It has had an array of big artists such as Happy Mondays to The Prodigy. The event is targeted at a variation of people but mainly people who enjoy House, electro and trance music, between the ages of 18 to 30 years old.

The branding of The Warehouse Project takes on a serious tone through it’s colour choice. The event uses black, red and silver which create a sense of professionalism. The images used for the event are of the dark warehouse and strobe lights to create a underground, rave atmosphere. The fonts used throughout the branding is Helvetica Neue in multiple weights, but most commonly in bold. The logo is made up of two faces with geometric shapes to represent the electronic music aesthetic.

now wave

“Now Wave are ahead of the game it’s one of the most exciting line ups ever held in the city.“ - Resident Advisor 2014

Now Wave is a club night in Manchester held at the deaf institute. The night is to beat for forward thinking innovation and consistently high production values. Recent times have seen them utilise their promotional experience to curate some of the hottest nights in the north, hosting impressive up and coming bands as well as championing rising international stars - acts on the cutting edge of music.

The branding behind Now Wave is based on sound waves which is were the iconic circular pattern was born. This pattern is a statement design in the Now Wave branding and can be recognised by it’s audience as it’s used on all of their promotional flyers, posters and even on their online content. Now wave use a multitude of bright colours in their branding and promotion to show it’s audience that they are eclectic and diverse just like their artist line up. The images used for the Now Wave promotional branding, range from geometric patterns to Photographs of artists and venues. The font used in the branding of now wave is Helvetica Neue bold.


“Parklife is creative and passionate, whose energy and focus deliver something rather sincere and special“ - LTW 2013

The Parklife Weekender is an independent music festival held annually at Heaton Park in Manchester. The event is usually met with high spirit, as the timing often coincides with the end of exams and is targeted at students between the ages of 18 - 28. The font used for the logo for Parklife is Festivo letters No.5. The font is hand rendered and creates a youthful and playful feel to the brand which fits in with it’s targeted demographic.

The body copy and tag lines used on the website and for printed material uses The Hand font. The font has a family of different weights and styles but the most consistent one used throughout their branding is The Hand Black font. This font has a hand rendered style which creates a personal feel to the brands image. The Parklife festivals images include a lot of film filters to make the images look warm and old school to create a nostalgic feel and to connote a sense of summer. The images switch between polaroid shots to professional gallery images of the venue and surroundings to show their audience a variety of what the festival has to offer.

1. T-Shirt.

2. Flyer.

3. Application and Website

4. Poster.

5. Programme.

6. Billboard

Excising products AND rANGE In music events there is a wide variety of branding products that are available, from flyers, posters, merchandise, wristbands, tickets, websites and many more. The printed material is something that is really predominate in the branding of events as it’s a way of advertising the events message to it’s consumers. PIN heavily focuses on music poster and flyers. The aesthetic of these posters are all influenced by the electronic, house and trance music which is displayed through it’s use of geometric shapes and bold colours.

Not only do PIN focus on the printed collateral but the full branded image. There are a range of products that have been produced from these music events which stem from T-shirt designs, wristbands, programmes, websites and many more. The studio thrives to maintain a consistent branded image for whatever event they represent which can be shown throughout their work. The benefits of them having this style of designing is so that their audience can identify with the brand and relate to it.

Distribution The distribution for the products produced for these music events are presented through mail shots, fly posting and promotional staff who hand out flyers, and tickets to the events. Social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram also have a big influence in the distribution of information about events. There’s sites enable constant contact with their consumers so they can keep them informed on what’s current.

Distribution about the events are also done through PR companies and sponsors, these companies are often linked due to the brand having similar interests such as music taste. Big fish events and We are full fat are responsible for promoting the three events explored above. PIN studio’s also contribute to this through their engagement in personalising websites for the events.

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