EXPERIENCE
The basics
Whether you are hosting an event, working on an interior design project, or sending out a gift, there are a few ingredients you’ll need to make sure you’re giving our audience a Zendesk kind of experience.
Materials
Simplicity is key when it comes to the materials we use. Real wood, warm felt, rugged concrete, soft leather—our furnishings are straightforward, look good, and are a pleasure to touch. Pick and mix from these ingredients:
Light wood

We prefer white oak whenever possible.

White surfaces

RAL 9002 Grey White is our default.

GrAy surfaces

RAL 7044 Silk Grey is our default.

Ribbed glass

Reeded glass or more temporary twinwall polycarbonate.

Concrete

Exposed, polished concrete. We don’t mind a few cracks.

Brown leather

Futura Lena Autumn Leaf is a good reference.

Gray fabrics

For example: Kvadrat Divina Melange 2.

Light black steel frames

RAL 7016 Anthracite Grey is our default.

Green Plants

Lush green leaves and succulents. See Plants section below

Branding
We like to keep logo applications subtle.

Neutral white graphics in combination with natural materials are preferred. For contrast, use our Kale color (make sure to get those color values right—it’s a tricky one to match). Please refrain from using product colors in our spaces.

Try to avoid slapping our logos everywhere. A few neat, strategic placements will suffice—and help the logo stand out. Just make sure our name is visible to the audience and that it looks good on social media posts.
Core logo
Apply our logo with a bit of depth to give it more weight and presence. If that’s not possible, flat clings are an option. Keep the logo white whenever you can, even on glass surfaces. If the contrast is not right, we do have a Kale version as well.
Wooden slats
wooden surface
(reeded) glass
light surface
Z logo on slats
This special version of our Z shape works great for larger physical applications, like an office reception.
Furniture piece
Wordmark
This life-size, 3D version of our wordmark looks great on a stage or somewhere people can take pictures with it. Always keep this version in white.
Life-size 3D
Wooden slats
Wooden slats are a recurring design element across all our physical spaces. Follow these dimensions to get it right.
Large

Use for larger items such as walls and stage backdrops.

Small

Use for smaller structures such as lecterns for speakers or smaller trade show booth surfaces.

(reeded) glass
light surface
For more information on how to use our brand assets, including save spaces for our logos, please consult the brand identity section of Brandland.
Furniture
The right furniture pieces can transform a space. And they are an easy way to be on brand. Simple furniture made with natural, quality materials is the obvious choice. Think Scandinavian hygge meets Japanese minimalism and craftsmanship. This selection of pieces only scratches the surface, but should give you a good idea of what we’re after.
Another Country bench
Artek stool
Pauline barstool oak textile
Gan Kilim Rug
Muuto Loft chair
muuto mingle cushion
Orlando lounge chair
Santa Cole Cesta lamp
Huebsch shelving unit
Lighting
Furniture transforms a space, but light is just as powerful to make or break it.

First, start off with a lot of natural light wherever possible. No one wants to sit in a dark cave all day.

With artificial light, use pockets of directional light here and there to create a cozy atmosphere. We really want all our light to be warm. Like the light of an old incandescent light bulb (and yes, for the environmentally conscious, it can be done with LEDs, too). 2000–3000 Kelvin, depending on application. And never go above that. Ever.

Warm light: Our faces light up at light color values between 2000–3000 Kelvin.

Cold light: blue fridge light is a no-go. We always keep things warm.

Pockets of light: Separate, cozy zones are better than everything lit brightly.

Speaking of disco: drop the fog machine and frantic spotlights.

Plants
Plants are also an integral ingredient of any Zendesk space. They add natural color, bring an organic element, and are a good way to hide an ugly pillar or add texture to an empty corner.

Here are some plants we like:
Strelitzia Nicolai
Philodendron
Monstera deliciosa
Ficus elastica
Succulents
Cacti
Grandiose flower arrangements are not particularly on brand for Zendesk. However, some more subtle floral pieces in our spaces are ok.

Eucalyptus branches

Monstera leaves

Loose greens and whites

Bouquets of roses

Plastic plants

Soft, natural colors

Loud colors

Orchids

Decoration
There is nothing sadder than empty shelves. These devious details make all the difference and bring the spaces to life.
Accent lamps
Concrete planters
Cozy blankets
Gray cushions
Portable speaker
Wooden toys
Wooden blocks
White wall clock
Zendesk books
Music
Music is the heartbeat of any Zendesk event. From the moment people step through the door, the objective is to immerse them in the right kind of upbeat soundtrack. Different playlists set the right mood for any activity and time of the day. Play them straight from Spotify, or use them to brief your DJ and make sure they stay "on track."
Smell
Welcoming guests with the smell of a freshly brewed cuppa is a great start to their day. But Zendesk olfactory experience design goes beyond that (and into the afternoon). Adding a diffuser to the lounge is a good way to give our events a unique note.

The preferred smell is a woody cedarwood scent. For example, try this one from Muji [link]. They also sell a neat little diffuser light that fits into the overall event aesthetic [link]. If that one is not available, here are some pointers to help pick out a replacement:

Use woody or citrus notes.

Don’t use floral notes

Use smart looking scent diffusers.

Don’t use over the top, ugly spaceship LED light diffusers.

Food and beverages
Serve food and drinks that speak to Zendesk brand attributes: quality ingredients, seasonal produce, nothing too pretentious, but always really tasty.

Simple, great quality food

Seasonal ingredients

Unexpected choices

Outstanding coffee

Fancy stuff like caviar.

Rank oil-fried fries

How we present our eats:

At peak hours, design food distribution for speed.

Use recyclable packaging. We keep things green.

Use white tablecloths, not black or funky colors.

Let the food and beverage staff wear our uniform aprons.

Never assume your audience knows all about your subject.

Don’t use weird catering company buffet-styling accessories. (Unless they are on brand, of course.)

Uniforms
As much as we’re told not to, people judge books by their covers. What we wear reflects how we’re perceived, and the staff at events are some of the most important brand ambassadors. Keep things casual, but refined.

Here’s how:
Option 1: Use the Zendesk uniforms
Designed by the Zendesk Brand Team and manufactured in Los Angeles, this uniform kit covers a wide range of functions and ensures staff look modern, smart, and on brand. These are the pieces in the collection:
Apron

With a unique adjustable strap design and an accent pattern pocket, these aprons are perfect for staff who will be serving guests food or beverages.

Jacket

A long cut denim jacket with a subtle Zendesk logo on the pocket. This jacket works well for greeters, registration staff, or staff at the booths.

Scarf

This square cloth is made from real silk with a subtle typographical pattern. It can be worn as a scarf around the neck or as a pocket square in a suit jacket.

Hat

A more casual accessory item that can be worn by anyone, e.g.,, greeters or technical staff.

All these uniform pieces are high-quality items in limited quantities that can be borrowed from the creative team in San Francisco, subject to availability.
Option 2: Create your own
If you need to create your own uniform, follow a few simple rules to make sure you stay on brand.

High-quality materials

Neutral colors like white, gray, and blue

Oversized logos

Cheap material

Shirts that don’t fit properly

Off-brand colors

Here are a few more good examples of how we like it:
Gray sweater

Gray sweater, white core logo on pocket

Blue t-shirt

Blue T-shirt, event logo applied on the chest and Zendesk core logo on the sleeve

White long sleeve t-shirt

White long sleeve T-shirt with white logo on the front and color event logo on the back

The swag section contains more details on how to create good apparel for our staff.