Experiential marketing (AKA engagement marketing) has increased in prevalence in the past few years—and odds are you’ve heard of some of the best experiential marketing campaigns. Experiential marketing involves hosting an event or activity involving your product or a general value of your brand that gets consumers involved and talking. The entire idea behind experiential marketing is that companies directly engage consumers in a fun, creative interaction.
According to a report by the Event Marketing Institute and Mosaic, 74% of people say that events and experiences significantly improved brand perception of a company. In the same study, when consumers were asked what marketing mediums best help them to understand a product or service, 65% said that live events or live product demos helped to better their understanding of a product more so than any other marketing medium. It’s clear that experiential marketing improves both brand perception and product awareness, and ultimately helps to further a business’s reach in the community.
Your event should get people talking, and, ideally - posting on social media to further spread the news about your event. In turn, engagement marketing often leads people to advertise your brand for you through word of mouth.
In fact, you’ve probably heard of some experiential marketing campaigns without even realizing what they were—Lean Cuisine touched hearts with the #WeighThis exhibit, Refinery29 created a social media trend with 29Rooms, and Red Bull pushed human limits with the world record for highest free fall.
All of these campaigns gained major attention in the media, not only getting people talking about the event, but about the company and their brand. So when planning your experiential marketing campaign, make sure that it’s on brand—this is crucial in order to truly and successfully increase brand and product awareness.
On a different note, experiential marketing can be done on a much smaller scale. LUSH hosts annual creative showcases in order to highlight their values and products - an excellent way to engage the community with the brand. Sharpie transformed walls into life-sized coloring books simply for people to have fun. And Gilmore Girls created pop-up Luke’s Diner locations in order to create a sense of excitement and exclusivity. There’s no need to push your products onto people at these events—if your event is well thought-out and fun, it will sell the products or services itself.
Ultimately, every company should be incorporating engagement marketing as part of their strategy. There are limitless opportunities for companies to create their own events that are tailored for their brand and are creative and unique to their values. Planning a successful experiential marketing campaign takes creativity, time, and effort. But it has the opportunity to take your entire marketing strategy to the next level simply through strong customer engagement.