The Chicago Flower & Garden Show is an annual event that helps welcome spring in Chicago. It is an interactive experience for show-goers, whom can walk through more than 25 life-sized gardens, join how-to workshops, learn from horticulture professionals and discover innovative tips to improve their gardening space. Every year, more than 40,000 visitors venture to its host location at Navy Pier to find flower and garden inspiration to take home with them. BatesMeron has been working with the show since 2012—developing branding, marketing and event support.
As an annual event that traces back to 1847, the anticipation of the Chicago Flower & Garden Show can grow stale. An attitude of “seeing it once is enough” was common amongst city dwellers who already visited or knew about the event—and an obstacle for those who try to avoid Navy Pier at all costs. A secondary challenge of encouraging new and younger gardeners to attend also arose with the show’s primary audience being 35 to 54 years old.
Our solution was to reinvigorate the audience with the excitement of a new show theme. When it came to making a decision, we said goodbye to themes that didn’t meet our objective of getting people pumped about what they’ll see, learn and experience at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show.
After much time brainstorming with the team at Flower Show Productions, the theme “Do Green. Do Good.” was introduced in 2014 with high anticipation.
The theme was inspired by all the good that comes from gardening, as well as ways to be more eco-conscious. The event’s look was bright, energetic and filled with photography of real people being green—whether that meant playing in the garden, building a floral arrangement or creating a backyard compost—we wanted to inspire activity for all ages.
The popularity of the 2014 show proved to be worthy of a back-to-back theme for 2015—giving us the opportunity to expand and evolve upon the concept of “Do Green. Do Good.” Welcoming back a similar look and feel, our messaging emphasized the benefits of attending the show with playful copy and vivid imagery. Headlines like “Blooms are better than blizzards,” “Make your neighbors green with envy,” and “This isn’t your grandmother’s garden show” urged Chicagoans to get out of the snow and experience something new.