pre-CONDe’s campaign to organize the 21th Ndesign

On: September 11, 2011
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About Mario Gesteira
I have graduated in product design in Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro. I've moved to Amsterdam to study New Media.


Ndesign is the national congress for design students and professionals in Brazil, it is the largest congress in this area in the country and one of the largest in Latin America. It is organized by a commission made of volunteer students which is elected in the end of each edition of Ndesign based on the proposals that they present, this commission is named CONDe.

The congress happens once a year and each edition is in a different state of Brazil according to the elected commission. For this article, I’ve chosen to analyze the case of the former CONDe, which has organized the twenty-first version of Ndesign, in its campaign to win this election, when it was a pre-CONDe.

A pre-CONDe has a lot of information to transmit for the students and usually has difficulty to obtain their attention for some aspects of the proposal. In order to do all that, this commission needed ways to spread information and they decided to designate a group to develop web games, videos, interactive exhibitions and products.

The first project developed was a hot site to announce the candidature of Rio de Janeiro for hosting Ndesign. It had a quiz and a card game. The quiz had questions mainly about the last editions of Ndesign, some about design in general and even there were some questions about general culture. After beating the quiz, the player would go to a black jack table. It was already a spoiler, because in black jack you have to do 21 points to win, and that was the phone code for Rio de Janeiro.

It was called “where is going to be the next Ndesign”, and already generated a great buzz in the Brazilian design community because the person would have to win both games just to discover who was the city that was going to be candidate to host the event. In the end the player could also subscribe with his email, so the pre-CONDe was able to start generating a mailing list from these subscriptions.

This website was released during a regional congress with two more videos, the candidature video and the recruitment video. The first one was a presentation of the commission and its members by the time.The second one was a parody of another very famous Internet video in Brazil that is also a parody of the military recruitment video. It presented all the things that happened in Ndesigns and called the students to attend to it. It had a comic content and spread a lot among the community.

In the main time the commission was designing shirts, buttons, stickers, bottle openers and a lot of different promotional material to increase the visibility of the event all over the country. They were sold in smaller congresses such as the regional student congresses and some professionals too.

After that, another web game was developed to introduce the visual identity of the candidature. It was based on the classic totem destroyer game, and after a brief explanation about the logo the player would have to build it in each level exploding the blocks.

In this one, a score table was put in the end of the game with the top players, so people played it again and again to try to beat their friends. As players had to put their email to enter their score, the organization could increase a lot the number of emails in their mailing list.

Also with this game a video was created explaining the main concept of the proposal: paths. The main question “where are you going?” and other support questions that were created to help the students think about their academic and professional life were asked to many students, teachers and professionals and the answers became a short introduction video for the theme of the congress. With this video, many people who had not read the proposal of the event could know about it and could start to get interest.

Then the idea of developing an interactive exhibition that could travel from congress to congress with some fun installations carrying the concept of the event arose. It was meant to work as propaganda for the congress and to propagate some campaigns the organization commission was working on.

After brainstorms many ideas came and with the programing knowledge that some members already had the commission was able to start the production of facial recognition interactive installations using web-cams. The exhibition was a success and happened in many different occasions in other events all over Brazil.

In the week before the twentieth edition of Ndesign starts the commission released one last video. It was just a music making fun of a famous software that designers use. At first it didn’t had anything to do with the campaign, but as it went viral the organization gained a big visibility with it.

During the twentieth edition of Ndesign in Curitiba the pre-CONDe had its interactive exhibition happening, they were selling their promotional material, and working as a group to inform everyone about their proposal and ideas. And that was how they worked through virtual and real Medias to achieve the design students and convince them that they could organize the next edition of Ndesign.

The twentieth-first edition of Ndesign happened in July of 2011 in Rio de Janeiro, and the CONDe kept developing videos and games until the start of the event. If you want to check more about it you can go their web site and see for youself.

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