Do you ever find yourself looking at lists like these and thinking, “my brand will never have the budget or technology to compete with those stunts”? Everywhere you look, you can find brands spending more on experiential marketing and fighting to have the most creative, unique events in the hopes of going viral.
What if we told you that being the most unique or creative isn’t the key to success? Or perhaps more accurately, creativity alone isn’t enough to make your event a success. The most effective experiential marketing companies focus on practical creativity instead. Let’s break down the differences between the two concepts:
Creativity is defined on dictionary.com as “the ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules, patterns, relationships, or the like, and to create meaningful new ideas, forms, methods, interpretations, etc.; originality, progressiveness, or imagination.” Merriam-Webster described creativity as “the ability to make new things or think of new ideas.” Of course, being able to brainstorm new ideas and think outside of the box can be helpful to success. But, what is creativity without action?
Now let’s look at the word “practical.” Practical has been defined as “adapted or designed for actual use; useful; engaged or experienced in actual practice or work” (dictionary.com), and “capable of being put to use or account; disposed to action as opposed to speculation or abstraction” (Merriam-Webster).
Combining the two concepts, practical creativity is the ability to discover solutions that will solve problems. As explained by Pro Motion’s own Steve Randazzo, practical creativity “fuses the award-winning dazzle of raw creativity with the level-headed, results-oriented practicality that’s necessary to measure and reproduce success.”
Five Benefits of Practical Creativity
- Practical creativity is cost effective. Creative marketing concepts can be expensive, requiring a large budget and lots of time. By definition, practical creativity is financially efficient and can be turned around as quickly as needed.
- Practical creativity is adaptable. Looking to resonate with a local community? Then no matter how creative, a nationwide attention-grabbing event wouldn’t be the best use of your resources. Whether big or small, attracting a new audience or reaching existing customers, practical creativity is tailored to the needs of your brand.
- Practical creativity is action-oriented. Typically, creativity in the business world involves brainstorming, novel ideas, and is entirely abstract. Instead, practical creativity takes into account the reality of implementing those big ideas.
- Practical creativity can be measured. Creativity itself isn’t easily measurable, since it pertains to thoughts. Since practical creativity involves putting a plan into action, discovering solutions, and solving problems, the outcome of a creative endeavor (like an event or experiential campaign) can be directly measured.
- Practical creativity is aligned with your values and brand strategy. As we explored recently, strategic planning is important to the success of your experiential marketing campaign. In order for a creative idea to produce results and benefit your company, the idea needs to be consistent with your brand’s values, messaging, and overall strategy. For example, putting on an expensive concert will do nothing for your brand if your typical audience is unlikely to spontaneously attend a musical event. In fact, failing to align your creative ideas with your brand could damage your authenticity. Experiential marketing approached with practical creativity will ensure that your events work for you.
Pro Motion worked with Smokey Bones Fire & Grill to increase foot traffic and buzz. They wanted to target “social starters” (millennial’s) to look at Smokey Bones as a fun place to hang out with friends, watch TV and extend the brand’s new, hipper attitude. Trend-spreading adults were provided with personal invitations to Smokey Bones via branded pint glasses and also provided coupons for free beer or a free appetizer. Sales and guest count increased at locations, at the same time restaurant traffic was down in most competitive chains. Pro Motion and Smokey Bones Fire & Grill worked together on the goal of creating buzz with a younger generation by focusing on social starters and local influencers, who brought their own guests and increased public awareness of the chain’s offerings.
Pro Motion is proud of our ability to corral a team of creative personalities to focus on one unified goal. Check out this quote from Event Marketer Magazine:
“Clients say the agency is big enough to handle anything but nimble enough to provide an efficient value against the budget. [Pro Motion is] the St. Louis independent agency… that has a resume full of big and small national and regional programs, tactical and strategic execution. Clients rave about the practical creativity and fiscal responsibility.”
Ready to benefit from a practical approach to creativity? Pro Motion has years of experience and is eager to help you succeed. Call us at 636.489.2753
Learn More About Steve Randazzo’s book, Brand Experiences: Building Connections in a Digitally Cluttered World. Click here to download 2 free chapters!