Also called engagement marketing, experiential marketing is similar to event marketing but, at times, has nothing to do with a specific event. It can include live streaming, live events, QR codes, visual reality, etc. The primary purpose of experiential marketing is to allow consumers to experience a brand in a tangible way.
It is a strategy that directly engages consumers and invites or encourages them to participate in a brand experience. There is a focus on helping consumers experience a brand by providing sensory, emotional, and cognitive values. Experiential marketing creates immersive experiences, immersing consumers in a brand versus talking to them about it. Those experiences have been shown to shift long-term consumer perception.
Experiential marketing is a quick way to build awareness via connections with individual consumers. The strategy invites the audience to interact with a brand in a real-life situation. It provides a hands-on, tangible branding material experience. It not only allows consumers to touch or view a brand in a physical space, but it also allows them to feel as though they are a part of something. And when you can create an interactive experience around a message, you can show consumers what your brand stands for.
A sustainable or ongoing approach to experiential marketing is more effective than one-off events. It is a strategy that seeks to build relationships and partners, not clients. Steve Olenski, contributing writer to Forbes, says that the best way to reach consumers in an emotional and engaging way is to create experiences that they actually want to be a part of. Engagement marketing is not about advertising a product. It is about giving consumers the opportunity to see what it is like to interact with the product. It provides consumers the chance to interact with your products via live events or product demonstrations in which they become active participants in the experience. Those experiences help make lasting connections between consumers and brands.
Experiential marketing increases the intensity of the interaction between consumers and brands. It creates authentic brand awareness through a tangible experience. This develops stronger bonds between people and brands. Experiential marketing provides a physical connection that stands out in the volumes of online advertising. And engaged consumers are more likely to exchange personal information for the experience – an admission price, of sorts.
Consumers engage with videos at an incomprehensible rate making a live feed from events amazingly impactful. As such, experiential marketing lends itself to modern social media. You can drive traffic to a specific social platform like Facebook Live or Instagram Story. You can use trending hashtags, videos and photos to involve potential participants. Use social media as a means of engaging consumers prior to and after a live event. Build engaging content to start the buzz. Ask questions, post quizzes or videos. Encourage sharing and make it easy with social buttons. At the event provide the opportunity for a photo opportunity with a logo or event hashtag banner.
Be sure to stream the event live on a social media platform for those who can’t attend. Host live question and answer sessions with influencers during the event. Post behind-the-scenes looks at putting everything together and running the event. And repurpose all of this valuable video content whenever possible. Experiential marketing paired with the reach of social media is a powerful way to drive word-of-mouth advertising.
Experiential marketing extends your marketing cycle – the event or experience should be a catalyst for extended customer-brand relationships. After the event, trending hashtags and viral videos can keep the interest levels high and excitement brewing about your brand. Event specific hashtags encourage engagement and help you monitor feedback. The experiences deliver real-time data to help brands be more responsive to consumers’ needs and wants.
Interested in some statistics?
Almost 70% of participants became regular customers of a brand after a live event.
An Event Track survey showed that almost ¾ of people had a more positive brand perception after an event. The same study found that 65% of consumers purchased the service or product being promoted.
98% of users feel more inclined to purchase a product or service after attending an event.
65% of consumers said live events helped them better understand a product or service.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicted that the event industry will grow by 44% from 2010 to 2020.
80% of marketers believe live events are critical to their brand’s success.
98% of consumers create digital or social content while attending events or experiences.
Whether you call it experiential marketing or engagement marketing, the idea is to provide consumers with a valuable, in-person experience with your brand. Experiment with the format to see what works best with your target audience. Ask them what types of experiences you can bring them that will build excitement about your brand. Ready to brainstorm an amazing brand experience? Contact Strategy Driven Marketing now for assistance with any and all of your digital marketing needs.