EE Live on transforming inclusivity and recognition

DRPG helped mobile network, EE, deliver its annual travelling roadshow in a wholly reimagined format.

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After years of delivering the same type of event, EE was ready for a change. Its annual get-together wasn’t achieving what the brand wanted any more – it needed to be more inclusive, reach a much wider audience, and land the business’ refreshed brand with real impact. Years of trust paved the way for DRPG to reimagine the whole format and re-launch Consumer Live as ‘EE Live’ in 2023.  

What they did

EE’s annual event used to span just one day. It was always hosted at the NEC, and it reached around 6,000 people at leadership level. DRPG recognised it could be so much more, so, for 2023, they transformed EE Live into a dynamic 6-month project. Extending its reach beyond a specific business tier, they reimagined EE Live as an inclusive experience comprising a travelling roadshow, a captivating brand identity film launch, and the Spotlight Awards.  

The culture at EE is open and community-focused, so the solution reflected that in the approach. Now, instead of 6,000 leaders, the event reaches 22,000 individuals across the business. And instead of telling just one story, it covers the big picture, explores regional highlights, and celebrates the best of the best across all EE. 

The DRPG team saw it as a three-part spectacle, with a film as its centrepiece. That’s where they began. Knowing the story EE wanted to tell, they built an on-brand look and effortless flow around it. The film, shot over two intense days, not only showcased the new EE in stores and business settings but went further to construct an entire street representing the diverse ways customers integrate EE into their daily lives. 

 "We wanted this film to bring the world of EE to life in a way that makes it feel real for the audience, plus really fun and entertaining,” says Martin McKean, Creative Director at DRPG. To achieve that, the team meticulously controlled every element, right down to the background ads on the virtual EE street. 

The second act was the Summer of Founders, a traveling roadshow that brought plenary sessions and an exhibition area to EE team members. Six exhibition stands, each exploring different facets of the business offered interactive learning experiences, plus we showcased the brand film and delved into business updates and insights. A highlight was the launch of the EE Spotlight recognition scheme, setting the stage for the third act. 

The hybrid Spotlight Awards event was our grand finale. Here, team members were recognised for performance and, at our suggestion, for doing good in their communities. To meet EE’s aim of inclusivity, the DRPG team needed to celebrate the 800 winners physically present at the event and extend the same quality of celebration to a target audience of 20,000 colleagues online. The success lay in a virtual-first design. Audience interaction functionalities, a meticulously planned communication strategy, and appearances by celebrities like Scott Mills and Mel C ensured that every attendee, regardless of their mode of participation, felt like a vital part of a larger narrative. 


Marianne Burgess, Head of Internal Communications at EE, emphasised the importance of working with a partner who understands your brand inside out. "Working with someone that you know you can trust, and who gets your brand and who gets the way you want to tell your story to people. That’s really important and that’s what we’ve got with DRPG."  

EE Live 2023 breathed life into a new brand, fostered inclusivity, and celebrated a diverse tapestry of achievements within the EE family. As the curtains closed on this six-month spectacular, EE emerged not just with a new identity but a strengthened sense of community that echoed through every corner of the organisation. 

Charlotte Flach Editor C&IT