Johnson & Johnson's London awards ceremony

The beauty and healthcare goods manufacturer celebrates at Riba

Client: Johnson & Johnson
Event: Awards ceremony
Group size: 100
Agency: The Red Consultancy
Date: 21 January 2009
Venue: Royal Institute of British Architects (Riba)
Budget: Undisclosed

The Brief: Consumer healthcare goods manufacturer Johnson & Johnson wanted to host its fifth Beauty Journalism Awards. The purpose of the event is to recognise and reward beauty journalists from across the UK for their work over the past year. Delegates on the night include beauty journalists, their editors and publishing directors, along with Johnson & Johnson directors.
The Red Consultancy, which has worked on every event, was briefed to find a venue in central London for the awards that was easily accessible for all the magazine houses, so journalists could attend straight from work.

Challenges: The client wanted a more glamorous event than the previous year without significantly increasing spend, so the biggest challenge was to achieve something special while keeping within budget. A few hours before the event, technical problems occurred affecting the sound and Flash presentations, which were key to the ceremony.

Solutions: Johnson & Johnson had chosen the Royal Institute of British Architects (Riba) on Upper Regent Street in London's West End to host an event previously.
To create an impact, the event was held in the venue's largest and most richly decorated room, the Florence Hall, which dominates the first floor of the building. At night, Riba is floodlit pink, which made an instant impact on guests arriving as the colour tied in with Johnson & Johnson's branding. Rather than Champagne, prosecco, sourced by Riba especially for the event, was chosen as an affordable alternative. Food was provided by the venue's in-house caterers, Charlton House.
In-house lighting was employed to save time and money, making use of the up-lighters in the Florence Hall as well as the Art Deco lamps with pink gels. The team also made use of the grand piano on the venue's landing, with live music playing during the event.
The team tried using a variety of laptops to resolve technical problems, but these were resolved by Shake, the company that had built the presentation.

Execution: Guests arrived from 6.30pm onwards and were greeted by Red Consultancy account manager Sarah Twyman and her team, before heading upstairs to the pink-lit first floor landing to enjoy a glass of prosecco and walk around the exhibits of Johnson & Johnson beauty products on display. At 7pm, delegates were led through to the Florence Hall, where white Perspex staging created an impressive backdrop for the ceremony.
Delegates were seated theatre-style for the 45-minute presentations, which featured speeches from Johnson & Johnson executives and the shortlists and winners in the nine categories of awards. This was followed by a drinks reception on the landing area outside the hall.

Verdict: Johnson & Johnson expressed considerable satisfaction with the venue and the quality of service it received, and would certainly host an event at Riba again in the future, says Johnson & Johnson brand manager Lucy Wright.
"The Riba has a fantastic location in the heart of town with excellent access," she says. "The team did a great job in putting together a stylish event while keeping within our budget. They went out of their way to accommodate us and the event had the right ambience. The feedback we received following the event was fantastic."
Twyman added: "The event went really well - we had a really good turnout and everyone loved the venue."

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