SpaceCom 2022 Conference & Expo Website Design
Work for hire for National Trade Productions, Inc. (NTP) by Lara Lee while employed at CSG Creative with permission for Lara Lee to display for self-promotion.
The Global Commercial Space Conference & Exposition, also known as SpaceCom, is the leading annual event supporting professionals in the commercialization and business of space. The event connects private and public sectors enabling new, lucrative opportunities in space-earth ventures, advancing the business of space, and protecting our planet. This year, the theme is, “Off-Plant for the Planet: Advancing space technology to better the planet and mankind.”
SpaceCom is managed by NTP Events — a leading event production company based in Alexandria, VA — in collaboration with NASA, the Department of Commerce’s Office of Space Commerce, the Department of Energy’s Office of Technology Transitions, and the Commercial Space Industry.
NTP Events, a branch of my parent company, National Trade Productions, Inc. (NTP), partners with CSG Creative to help market the event. As a result of this partnership, CSG re-brands SpaceCom’s website every other year with new creative. Last update in 2019, the website switched to the visual page builder, Elementor, for advanced features and a no-code implementation.
This website design allowed me to explore new content, imagery, layouts, and animations. This contrasts with a website “reskin,” like my DEMA Show 2019 Trade Show Website Reskin, in which I swap copy and imagery of pre-existing content and layout. Reskins are not the design overhauls website designs are. While faster and more budget-friendly, they don’t allow as much opportunity to improve UI/UX as a whole website (re-)design.
National Trade Productions, Inc. (NTP), NTP Events
a Record-Setting Year
Expo Website Design
for 2x Webpages
across 3x Agencies
Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
I collaborated with many teams across three agencies to design SpaceCom 2022:
Myself, my supervisor, SpaceCom’s CSG Accounts rep and creative lead
SpaceCom’s NTP Accounts rep
The client, whom NTP’s own President represents
The WordPress web developer
Other Expo Website Design Challenges:
SpaceCom 2022 wasn’t only accelerating space business—it also accelerated the website production schedule.
Furthermore, the client held to a hard deadline. Consequentially, CSG makes up time for any external delays as well.
Despite the rigorous review process and multi-agency collaboration, I completed the website design from initial concepts to final deliverable in just 5 days of work! Additionally, I was able to execute the look to the client’s satisfaction with minimal edits, just 6 rounds of revisions. (That’s really good for this particular client.)
Changing Brand Guidelines
The client was actively revising the event’s main visual identity and branding guidelines when website production kicked off. While my colleague, Courtney Lopes, handled those updates, I needed my website mock-ups to stay current with the evolving creative theme.
Planning Ahead for the Platform
Since I knew the SpaceCom website uses the CMS WordPress and the page builder, Elementor, I could plan ahead for technical features and limitations in my static mock-ups. I have great experience working with both of those tools, plus quite a bit of coding under my belt.
I capitalized on Elementor’s built-in features and worked them in. For example, these included:
- parallax animations on scrolling,
- diagonal shape dividers,
- animated stats counters, and
- customizable hover state changes.
Furthermore, I also worked around looks that I knew would require excessive work for the web developer and/or client to implement and maintain. I avoided limitations such as:
- different backgrounds for every speaker,
- custom iconography (instead opting for Font Awesome), and
- custom navigation positioning on widgets like carousels.
From Initial Concept to Final Artwork
While the original event visual identity and branding was minimalist with lots of breathing room, the client preferred a compact website. We reduced whitespace throughout, added background photos, and enlarged show photos to epic proportions.
(As executed by the client, show management, and the web development agency)
The client continued to actively revise the brand and website content as well once CSG turned over the final artwork.
They added a second CTA above-the-fold, re-ordered content, and removed a call-out plus the whole about page altogether. Additionally, they didn’t pursue parallax, hover, or widget animations. Instead the client swapped native HTML, SVG, and effects for simple, static images instead.
In the End
Ultimately, the client went in another direction from their original branding. Instead, they opted toward a dark and dramatic, compact expo website design. As a result, the live website has a very different homepage from my initial concepts. Additionally, while the About page was dropped, the client nonetheless has several different content presentations in their pockets going forward!
Visit the live website at https://spacecomexpo.com/