Experiential marketing is not a new trend. In fact, it has been around since the late 1800s, maybe even longer. Banks, automobile companies, and food businesses have long participated in festivals and other special events to connect with customers in person and hand out product samples. However, as times evolve and customer expectations are constantly changing, companies are taking this chance to integrate experiential marketing into their marketing strategy.
If you’re going experiential, follow these tips to wow current and new customers:
Determine your KPIs and desired outcomes
Even before you start formulating the strategy for your branding event, it is important that you think about what will ultimately make the event successful. A key performance indicator (KPI) in marketing is a measurable value that is linked to certain objectives of a marketing campaign. Clarifying your goals early on helps you stay on track throughout the planning process, reminds you what to invest in, provides guidance on your event strategy, and ultimately assesses the overall success of your event. Without KPIs, it is difficult to create strategic marketing campaigns and evaluate marketing results.
Natasha Miller: “How many people will attend? Is it their target market? Is that their target demographic? What are they going to get out of it? What can you guarantee they’ll get out of it and what do you hope?”
Engage with your audience
Customer engagement becomes more important than ever as we face busier lives, shorter attention spans, and saturated markets. Interactive and hands-on activities fully engage your audience and greatly increase the time they spend testing your products. By engaging the mind and body in a unique experience, customers will be more interested in what your brand has to offer.
Fran Bishop: “People heard about his event and those are the people who want to continue to do business because they know you do good business.”
Make it personal and authentic
Experiential marketing is all about creating personal, tangible, and memorable experiences with your customers. Create an event that showcases what your brand really stands for. When you select an experience that fits your brand’s mission and personality, you develop a deeper and more authentic connection with your audience. These are the experiences that customers remember when taking a niche in their mind with the personality of your brand.
Michael Buzinski: “How can we flip the coin? How can we flip the script? How can we make it to where everybody’s going to either always remember it and, and, or compare theirs to ours?”
Make events part of your marketing strategy
Events and experiences are an important part of integrated brand marketing campaigns. As a matter of fact, events, festivals, and conferences have always been popular marketing strategies. Create ways for the customer and the brand to come together to strike up a conversation, build a strong relationship, and design a memorable experience for everyone.
Michael Buzinski: “Experiential marketing is how to get it different than any other person has done it in that same industry.”
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many brands and companies have switched to going digital. Virtual events are a new concept to most and there has certainly been a learning curve. One of the benefits of virtual experiential activations is the exponential growth that can take place online and on social media. As technology advances, experiential marketing events will only continue to improve in the future, and events, brand activations, and overall marketing initiatives will become more innovative. You can access existing online platforms and live streaming solutions like Zoom, exVo, Facebook Live, Youtube Live, and more.
Celi Rivas: “Even after the pandemic opens up, I think they’re going to keep doing these virtual summits because they’re so profitable.”