Businesses today face a major challenge.
The average consumer attention span has decreased rapidly.
Hence, they need to figure out how to gain consumers attention again.
Before, marketers spent millions on traditional advertising.
A few years later, a lot of things changed.
One of the major changes is the shift towards a mobile-centered world.
As a result, businesses are investing heavily in mobile advertising strategies.
However, problems arose when too many advertisers tried to appeal to consumers.
There is too much clutter that it is difficult to stand out.
Therefore, it is essential that businesses create brand preference.
Essentially, this is where consumers become loyal to a brand.
One of the best ways to do this is through experiential marketing.
With this, marketing goes beyond appealing to consumers through their mobile screens.
Instead, businesses can create highly immersive and memorable experiences for their consumers.
However, experiential marketing still lacks a standard definition.
Let’s explore what experiential marketing means.
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So, What Is Experiential Marketing?
However, the idea has already existed in different forms.
Before this, it was known as live marketing or event marketing.
Experiential marketing can exist different forms.
It doesn’t necessarily have to be tied to an event.
However, an event can be a larger part of the experiential marketing campaign.
In essence, it aims to create a closer bond between the consumer and the brand.
When implementing experiential marketing, there is no standard approach to it.
Instead, businesses must add their personal touch.
In a marketing campaign, the main goal is to stir positive emotions in people.
Therefore, customers they engage with are more likely to have a higher brand preference.
Furthermore, businesses should define the goal of their marketing campaign.
Hence, establishing parameters to measure the campaign’s effectiveness are important.
One of the most common ways to do this is by measuring the social expressions you receive.
For example, you can offer a discount for customers that post a “check-in” post on their social media platform.
Also, you can check how many Instagram or Facebook posts were created using your event hashtag.
Experts project that experiential marketing has immense power.
However, measuring conversions is difficult with experiential marketing.
This is because it may not happen until much later.
Despite that, experiential marketing can boost the customer lifetime value.
In other words, customers are encouraged to support a business in the long-term.
Should You Try Experiential Marketing?
To answer this, you must first identify your business goals, timeline and resources.
Furthermore, you must be prepared to integrate experiential marketing with other marketing channels.
By doing this, you create several touch points for customers to interact with your brand.
We will discuss more about this further into this article.
Above all, experiential marketing helps to humanize your business.
People get to experience your brand firsthand.
You get to showcase the qualities of your offerings in person.
Never underestimate the power of one on one marketing.
What Are the Benefits of Using Experiential Marketing?
- Offers an authentic experience
- Integration across social media platforms
- Millennials love it
- Helps convey values and mission
- Allows micro-targeting
- Provide valuable analytics
Let’s explore six benefits of using experiential marketing.
You will also learn more from real-life examples of experiential marketing campaigns.
1. Offers an Authentic Experience
Businesses must understand their target market wants.
Consumers today want to see authenticity in a brand experience.
Experiential marketing allows brands to achieve this.
By engaging in experiential marketing, this effectively creates a two-way dialogue.
In fact, it humanizes the interaction between the consumer and the brand.
You get to showcase your business beyond their mobile screens.
Businesses must realize that consumers today are very different.
In the past, consumers were easily persuaded to buy something.
Today, consumers want you to give them a good reason why they should buy from you.
Taking this into account, experiential marketing is a good platform for businesses to persuade their target market.
In fact, consumers can learn more about your brand personality and values.
The platform that experiential marketing provides for businesses is important.
It becomes a platform for businesses to create and strengthen brand preference.
Above all, experiential marketing gives consumers the freedom to engage with a brand.
Real Life Example: Lean Cuisine #Weighthis
Previously, their advertising strategies largely revolved around weight loss.
Then, they took on the challenge to appeal to consumers differently using experiential marketing.
The marketing campaign took place at the New York Grand Central Station.
Here, brand representatives invited women to ‘weigh in’.
Instead of weighing themselves, the scales were small boards.
Women were asked how they wanted to be weighed.
Instead of using their real body weight, women gave different measures of what they wanted to be weighed by.
For instance, some of them wanted to be weighed for their contributions as a single mother.
If you want to see what other women wrote, check out the video of the inspiring campaign below.
Unlike many other marketing campaigns, Lean Cuisine never interrupted the participants.
In other words, none of them interacted with the brand’s product offering.
Instead, the experiential marketing conveyed an important brand message.
Although Lean Cuisine creates food a healthy lifestyle, there are other things that matter more than the numbers on the scale.
Experiential marketing enabled this message to be conveyed effectively to these women without blatant product promoting.
Many people were inspired and voluntarily participated in the campaign.
As a result, Lean Cuisine gained over 204 million total impressions.
If done right, experiential marketing can increase brand preference drastically.
2. Integration Across Social Media Platforms
If you are a business owner, there is a high chance that you have utilized social media marketing strategies.
Admittedly, social media is a powerful tool.
Can you imagine the impact when you combine social media with experiential marketing?
When offline marketing meets online marketing, your message bears a greater impact.
In other words, you create several touch points for your consumers to interact with your brand.
So, the experiential marketing experience does not have to end at an offline event.
Businesses commonly use hashtags to associate their events with social media postings.
As people are naturally inclined to share photos of themselves, businesses can take advantage of this.
Create a fun environment for people at your event.
It is highly likely that they will snap and share their favorite moments there.
Then, they will share it on their social media platforms.
At the same time, you gain social media recognition from their friends and followers.
Ultimately, you need to gain positive news about your company.
For example, a personal trainer is trying to sell his workout and diet plan.
Naturally, his target group will be people who are health enthusiasts.
He can also target people who want to lose weight.
Naturally, he will post about it on his social media platforms.
Although so, he can gain more recognition by using experiential marketing.
So, he can showcase the effectiveness of his diet plan by getting someone to try it out.
Document the process closely.
Once the person completes the diet plan, post a video on social media platforms.
By utilizing video-based platforms such as YouTube, it is most likely to go viral.
This demonstrates how the power of social media can be further strengthened with experiential marketing.
3. Millennials Love It
While it seems like a sweeping statement, millennials love experiences.
They like searching for upcoming festivals, concerts or any events that they can attend.
This is driven by their need to experience new and exciting things.
If anything, millennials are an important group for advertisers to target.
Currently, millennials have a purchasing power around $1 billion.
As they advance in their careers, this figure is expected to increase.
The challenge for advertisers is to figure out how to market to millennial effectively.
Today, millennials lack trust in traditional advertising methods.
So, if you are using television advertising or radio advertisements, you can forget about appealing to them.
This is because millennial perceive these methods as annoying and low-quality.
Instead, millennials want a two-way communication with brands.
This is why you will observe a preference for social media platforms among millennials.
They are also highly likely to purchase a product if they had a good experience at a brand’s event.
Real Life Example: Delta Launchpad Events and Vice Media:
Delta Airlines is a prime example of a business that did experiential marketing right.
The business is interested in appealing to a younger demographic of travelers.
Hence, they partnered with Vice Media for an experiential marketing campaign.
As a result, they hosted a series of entrepreneurial events in several cities.
Each of the cities had its own focus topic.
In this event, entrepreneurs learned more about how to find success in film, music and food.
Delta’s decision to partner with Vice successfully created events with an authentic experience.
Many of those who attended the events were of a younger demographic.
As a result, Delta gained brand exposure and brand preference.
Ultimately, experiential marketing also highlights the importance of strategic partnerships.
4. Helps Convey Brand Values and Mission
Consumers are more likely to have a brand preference when they have shared values with a brand.
As marketers are accustomed with traditional advertising methods, this is not an easy task.
This is because businesses must convey brand values, mission and goals.
Traditional advertising couldn’t fully convey this message.
Some businesses even attempted to do this using social media advertising.
Although social media advertising can accomplish this to some extent, businesses still face the challenge of capturing consumers attention in the long-term.
By engaging in experiential marketing, your target audience will be ready to absorb your brand message.
Conveying your key beliefs is easier through words and experiences.
Ultimately, it comes down to being able to create unique experiences for your target market.
This makes them more likely to believe the message you are conveying.
Real Life Example: Red Bull Stratos Project
Many of Red Bull activities can be classified as experiential marketing.
They engage in many extreme sports events and Formula One activities.
Red Bull is a well-known contender in experiential marketing.
In fact, many of their events have their own social media channels.
One of the many events they created as part of experiential marketing is the Red Bull Stratos Project.
In this event, Red Bull collaborated with Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner.
They successfully broke the 52-year-old record for skydiving.
The audience was engaged in this event as they were able to view the event through a live stream.
If you want to see the remarkable feat, check out the video below:
Through this event, Red Bull fully embraced its identity as a brand which constantly pushes the limits.
It also successfully associated itself with a high level of action and excitement.
As an energy drink brand, these values are perfectly portrayed through their experiential marketing campaign.
5. Allows Micro-Targeting
One of the biggest mistakes you can make as a business owner is expecting your target market to find you beforehand.
If anything, you are the one that needs to meet them where they are.
What is your biggest marketing goal?
If you want to attract millennials, go to the places that they frequently hang out.
Similarly, you should go to places where your customers are to appeal to them.
Collaborating with event organizers can also be highly beneficial for your business.
This is because they keep detailed data about their past attendees.
Using this data, you can target the population you would like to reach.
They can advise you on how you can reach them.
Undoubtedly, experiential marketing is a powerful tool.
Paired with data that allows you to micro-target your audience, you are one step closer to success.
Let’s take a look at how Samsung executed their experiential marketing campaign.
Real life example: Samsung
Samsung was one the sponsors for the 2012 Olympics.
They took the opportunity to create several experiential marketing campaigns across London.
So, they set up their ‘Samsung Studios’ in areas where there are a lot of people.
The campaign aims to promote the new Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note.
In these studios, visitors can play the Samsung’s Olympic Games app.
Besides, they can have their photo taken using the Galaxy S3.
To add a personal touch, Samsung turned these photos into personalized badges.
Interestingly, there were no products sold at these pop-up stores.
Visitors only engaged directly with the all-new Samsung models.
As a result, nine out of ten visitors claimed that they were more likely to consider buying a Samsung phone.
6. Provide Valuable Analytics
On one hand, experiential marketing can provide a highly interactive and fun experience for consumers.
For business owners, it provides them several key analytics.
The common parameters used to measure these events are the total attendance, Facebook likes and social media interactions.
Other quantitative measures include the number of samples given away, newsletter signups and website views.
These statistics are vital.
They are necessary for improvements in future marketing campaigns.
In fact, these data can help you to turn event goers into active customers.
Ultimately, the analytics help you to produce results.
More importantly, analytics help your business to establish benchmarks.
Over the years, you will engage in different marketing campaigns.
This analytics will provide you with a basis to compare the performance of your campaigns over time.
Hence, investing in data tracking tools is highly beneficial for your business.
You can easily identify the high and low points of a marketing campaign.
From this, you can decide where to allocate your marketing allocation better.
By not having analytics, you may risk investing in underperforming campaigns.
Moreover, analytics also contribute to increased brand value.
This is because it provides a strong analytical framework for you to identify more business opportunities.
Although it can be a tedious task at times, the added benefit it brings can make a big difference.
It can be the difference between a good company and a great one.
Start Considering Experiential Marketing
Regardless of the size of your business, you should seriously consider experiential marketing.
Don’t let the fancy term intimidate you.
Experiential marketing is not just for big brands.
Admittedly, big brands do have more resources at their disposal.
However, any brand that wants higher brand preference should aim to create a personalized experience for their consumers.
Experiential marketing highlights the importance of word-of-mouth and an authentic experience.
Your goal should be to provide value to consumers through the experience.
Hence, it will still be impactful regardless of the scale.
If you haven’t included experiential marketing as one of your marketing strategies, consider it today.