Design Manchester: DM17

For ten days in October, the people of Manchester and beyond came together to celebrate design and creativity in all its forms, welcoming some of the world’s most inspiring creatives, putting a spotlight on Manchester’s home grown talent, and building a community that invites discussion and debate.

DM17 was a hugely successful – a city-wide festival that truly offered something for all – taking in talks, exhibitions, a film season, a design fair, and parties, and we were incredibly proud to host over 60 events at landmark venues including the Principal Manchester, Upper Campfield Market, Manchester Central Library, Hermès, HOME, the National Football Museum and many more.

DM17 tripled its audience, with events and exhibitions reaching 120,000 people, and attendance of more than 74,000, engaging as ever with designers, artists, creative professionals, businesses, policy makers, and public institutions.

DM17’s Great Debate, this year in partnership with Guardian Live, was a complete sell out, with a panel including Gary Neville, Ali Grehan and Katie Tonkinson (Hawkins\Brown) discussing the public realm and the impact design can have on our city.

The Design City Weekender took over Upper Campfield Market, moving indoors to host three days of exhibitions, live art and design, music, food and drink, alongside The Manchester Print Fair. Workshops were delivered by University of Salford’s BA (Hons) Fashion Design, G . F Smith, SWALK Creative, Fred Aldous, Animation Nation and Lazerian.

The biggest ever DM17 Conference was held in the Principal Manchester’s ballroom, once again hosted by Patrick Burgoyne (Creative Review), featuring internationally celebrated and influential speakers including Factory lead architect Ellen Van Loon (OMA), North, Naresh Ramchandani (Pentagram), film production designer Alex McDowell, illustrator Emily Forgot, alongside Tash Willcocks (Hyper Island) and Lawrence Kitson (Co-op Digital).

A specialist media relations campaign from Sundae Communications generated over 80 pieces of online, broadcast and print coverage with a potential reach of over 250 million. DM17 saw strong support from Creative Review, Creative Boom, Design Week, FormFiftyFive, the Guardian, Manchester’s Finest, BBC Radio 6 Music and BBC Radio Manchester.

Design Manchester’s social engagement reached new levels, with reach almost doubling year on year to over 28 million, with more than 35,000 engagements and over 10,000 followers.

Print, outdoor and digital marketing

DM17’s marketing campaign was delivered once again by arts marketing specialists KMS Media and the Audience Agency, with the support of Manchester City Council, designed by Instruct, and using collateral created by digital artist Andrew Brooks, Process Moving Image and Instruct.

184 print and outdoor ads appeared on the Metrolink, GMPTE buses, digital billboards on the Mancunian Way and Deansgate, and lamppost pennants across the city. Print and online ads were placed with the Manchester Evening News, the Metro and the Guardian, and a Media IQ targeted and digital campaign reached almost a million people.

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DM17 tripled its audience, with events and exhibitions reaching 120,000 people, and attendance of more than 74,000.