People love being involved with a brand’s campaign, especially if they’re highlighted (and featured on Instagram!) This makes Experiential Marketing an effective strategy but experiential marketing is not just giving out samples of your products. It’s designing a unique, memorable and inspirational experience. After all, a unique experience can fuel word of mouth on and offline, and change the perception of your brand.
What Is an Experiential Marketing Strategy?
Experiential Marketing, also known as Engagement Marketing or Event Marketing, is a type of strategy that strays from the typical view of consumers as passive receivers. Instead, it is a strategy that actively involves consumers in the creation of marketing programs, hopefully leading to a relationship between the consumer and the brand.
95% are willing to purchase after an Experiential Event
If you knew that 95 per cent of consumers are more inclined to purchase after attending an event, and over 75 per cent of brands see better than a 2 to 1 ROI on their investment, would those stats make you take another look at Experiential Marketing? They should.
Granata Pet increased purchases of their products in local pet food stores simply by placing a billboard on a busy street frequented by many a dog-walker which dispensed their dog food. It’s easy to see why it was successful, any dog owner would gladly purchase food they know their pets like, and I can’t think of a more effective way to show owners what their pets like, than what Granata did.
Most ads out there are easily forgettable. They come and they go- especially print ads. Consumers see ads and then move on to the next, so it’s difficult to know if an ad really captured their attention. Digital advertising is a little easier to measure interest, because you can track the click-throughs, and ultimately purchases. But as is the case with Granata, experiential marketing can help companies to track customer involvement.
It’s all based on experiential learning, which is one of the ways to pick up something new. The concept of learning through experience has existed since Aristotle, when he wrote in the Nicomachean Ethics, “For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them.” Essentially, we all learn (and remember!) better when we’re doing something, rather than just being fed a lesson. For example, I’m terrible with math, but I definitely will remember how to solve an equation if I work on the equation, rather than if someone just told me how it should be solved.
By using Experiential Marketing, your company can capture:
- Lead Generation
- Brand Awareness
Experiential Marketing Examples for Small to Middle-sized Companies
While there are many different examples of experiential marketing, there are some that truly stand out. The first is the Daisy Marc Jacobs Tweet Shop. The Tweet Shop was really unique in that instead of having customers pay for merchandise, it exchanged merchandise for updates posted on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #MJDAISYCHAIN. It’s not very often that you receive expensive merchandise (or any at all for that matter) simply by posting about it on social media. This was a fantastic event, which was fun for everyone involved, and captured the attention of the media as well as the industry.
Or how about McFarland – The Pissalyzer? In order to alert bar patrons if they had too many drinks to safely drive, McFarland created a heat sensitive sticker, which was placed in urinals throughout Milan. Data proved the average person took almost 22 seconds to relieve themselves after drinking one pint, and the sticker was designed to change color after this timeframe, ultimately alerting the patron they had too much to drink, and should call a cab instead of driving.
It was original and effective, and was able see a real difference when they saw a 65% increase in consumers hailing cabs from locations with the sticker installed. It was clear that even people who were drunk thought it was memorable.
Meanwhile in Sweden, the Swedish Post needed to get the message out to their customers that anything could be shipped overnight using their new green packaging. To do so, they created a website where users could pick a package, listen to what it sounded like if it was shaken, and then enter in their guess as to what the package contained. If guessed correctly, they would ship the package overnight, and the lucky guess would receive the goods the very next day. It may not have been an experiential campaign but it was definitely memorable and a different way to engage the masses. The Posten: The Sound of Green was such a success that in only 12 days, all 80 packages had been correctly guessed and shipped to the winners. I only wish I lived in Sweden when this campaign was running.
Experiential Marketing is not just for big companies
Experiential Marketing is the product of a great idea, and can be done without a huge budget. If you don’t have a big company, don’t feel like you’ll never be able to use this kind of campaign. You just need to discover how to connect Experiential Marketing with your products, services and brand, then design the campaign to be measurable. It’s all about how you put the event together, and how you connect with your customers. If you can make that connection, you can create a fan for life. Check out Our Experiential Marketing Case Study Results here, and if you need more ideas or help seeing your vision through, give us a call!
If you want to learn more about specific key elements of an effective marketing plan, read our 50+ page booklet on How to Write A Strategic Marketing Plan That Yields ROI – complete with explanations