We live in a world of endless choices where new brands and fresh categories pop up with increasing regularity, all vying for a consumer’s attention and loyalty. Couple this with a technological revolution – all news, all the time, unending content, ad blockers – and it’s easy to see the challenge facing marketers today. Simply put, many of the old methods no longer work, or work less effectively. Breaking through the clutter to get attention is no longer the marketer’s goal; the real end game is building relationships in areas relevant to consumers’ lives and budgets. That’s where experiential comes in: an abundant supply of touchpoints, places and events in the life of your target demographic.
Proof is in the studies: based on a recent study, 98% of people surveyed said that seeing a product or service marketed through an experiential marketing campaign would make them more inclined to purchase it. (Event Track 2015)
More and more brands and their agencies are seeing the link between sales and experiential. In 2014, 59% of respondents said they saw a link. By 2015, that number had increased to 65%. (Event Track 2015)
Connecting and driving behavior:
Experiential is a driver in curating content, encouraging prospects to engage with a brand in a memorable way, and creating a lasting emotional connection. Talking at an audience, which is what most traditional media does, can result in getting lost in the mix. Experiential has forged a new way of conversing with an audience, not only allowing the consumer to actively participate, but to be an integral part of the growth of the brand’s community. The result is a much deeper and measurable impact.
With 74% of all adults that use the Internet also using social media (pew research), a brand’s community is primed to share and multiply the conversation while strengthening and cultivating new adopters organically. This jumping of media channels provides incredible added value, and the digital / social KPIs you so desperately crave.
In our recent campaign for T-Mobile, the onsite experience was designed to bolster the larger #conversation, resulting in nearly 1 million social media impressions from just a 5 day campaign. Each one of those tweets impressed upon those who regard those users as influencers, their followers; and so on. Content and brand appeal may have been experienced in person by a finite number, but the natural content derived through the live experience wasn’t something you could buy as a brand otherwise. This was honest and unrefined brand positive positioning.
If you’re not considering experiential as part of your content strategy you may be missing a valuable component. When well executed, experiential converts prospects to customers and turns customers into ambassadors promoting to their friends. Experiential’s growth as a marketing strategy underscores its efficacy as more brands seek to find ways to fold it into the mix.
Not just bells & whistles:
While it might SEEM like it’s one big party, creating an effective experiential strategy requires a sound understanding of a brand’s overall goals and marketing plans, so that the components fit well together and amplify the net effect. For example, when working recently with national telecom company T-Mobile to help recruit potential employees in the highly competitive tech world, EMC worked closely with the client to help identify the most effective experiential strategy, and to manage the myriad of details involved to execute a flawless campaign. In just 5 days the client engaged with over 7,000 people, and was mentioned in 26 media pieces, 6 broadcast news segments, 5 articles, and 10 radio spots.
The secret sauce:
At EMC Events (a division of EMC Outdoor), we have been producing experiential campaigns that create brand content long before it was hot, and have learned there are no shortcuts or packaged solutions. By definition, experiential programs are custom productions, requiring a skilled director to navigate the twists and turns, manage the nuances and address anything needed on the fly. From creative concepts to logistical execution, we produce each and every program first hand, providing accountability each step of the way.
Want to learn more about driving the consumer behavior you need? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 610.355.4473. Let’s explore concepts for your brand!