Some people argue that traditional marketing is no longer viable for most businesses. Advertising is increasingly tricky on TV, and in most online spaces, consumers can skip ads or have an ad-blocker installed on their laptops. In this situation, what other options are out there?
One popular method of alternative advertisement has been experiential marketing. It focuses on direct connections with the customers, through interactive activities, like events, webinars, Q&As, and product rollouts. If you want more information on the matter, here are the basics of experiential marketing and its benefits.
What Is Experiential Marketing?
The essence of experiential marketing is based on creating memories and emotional connections between the client and the brand. In traditional advertising, the client was always passive, looking at an ad or reading a product’s label. By involving the client, you can forge a relationship that benefits both parties in the long term.
Some examples include workshops, tours, conferences, product sampling, and demos. The goal is achieved as long as the client can associate the product with a pleasant memory. Any helpful, humanizing, and fun time is enough to make customers form a bond with your brand.
A study from EventTrack in 2021 showed that 91% of clients are more likely to purchase a product or a service if they interact with them. Also, 40% said they feel more loyalty towards the company after interacting with them. With this number in mind, it’s no wonder why more and more companies are opting out of the old methods.
How Does Experiential Work?
There is a massive difference between something being sold and something leading to an emotional purchase. As social creatures, humans are prone to bind and form communities. The consumer industry is no different; loyal customers usually have a memory attached to a particular brand.
This type of method works in almost any type of industry or business. The only difference is how you implement it. For small brands, live events and interactive digital spaces are good cost-efficiency options. In contrast, more prominent brands can go for customizable rooms and activities.
A great example of experiential marketing can be the IKEA store sleepover in 2011. After one fan posted on their Facebook page that they would like to “have a sleepover in Ikea,” the company opened its store in Essex, UK, and let almost 100 of them spend the night there. As a result, their Facebook page increased by 100,000 people.
Do’s and Dont’s of Experiential Marketing
If done correctly, experiential marketing can be very profitable. However, there is a fine line between a successful and a failed campaign. For a start, many events can get over the top and try to sell more products at these events. That is the biggest mistake by far. An event like that is made to create an emotion with the customer, not to trick them into purchasing.
Another bad example is confusing and chaotic company values. To implement experiential marketing in your company, you must have a clear goal. Keeping your values and your image as a brand is just as important as building them. Your message should be profound, simple, and consistent for your customers to easily connect to it and spread it around.