Over the past two weeks, we’ve been sharing the Top 10 Reasons experiential marketing is so effective. So far, you’ve learned that experiential marketing works because it facilitates authenticity and allows your brand to form emotional connections with customers. Experiential marketing lends itself to creating brand content and creating word-of-mouth marketing through social media buzz. Customers get a chance to really understand your product when they interact with it in an experiential event campaign. Experiential marketing also works because it is customer-centric. In this blog post, we share the final three reasons experiential marketing works for just about any brand.
- Experiential helps you learn what your customers want
Experiential marketing is built around the idea of encouraging customers to participate and engage. Experiential marketing provides the opportunity for consumers to provide their opinions on your products and services. In the age of social media, customers expect to have ongoing relationships and constant access to two-way dialogues with brands. Events allow customers to try your products before purchasing, and they can give you valuable feedback in real time, allowing you to address potential questions or issues immediately. Essentially, experiential marketing excels at creating two-way conversations between companies and consumers!
Beyond the customer opinions collected from informal interactions, formal data gathering can be incorporated in your events. According to Agency EA’s 2019 Experiential Marketing Trend Report*, 73% of B2B companies are already capturing audience data at events. Data is being used to determine ROI and measure the success of events and experiential campaigns, and marketers need data about consumers to know where and how to reach them most effectively. However, in today’s world people are justifiably suspicious of handing over personal information. This is where your event staff can really shine: brand ambassadors must be properly trained to respond properly to people’s concerns. Staff should be able to answer questions about how their data will be used, who has access to it, and where data will be stored. Being able to address customers’ concerns sensitively and effectively will increase their trust in your company.
- Experiential marketing is active rather than passive
The average concentration span of humans has dropped from 12 seconds to a mere 8 seconds! In the digital age, it is more crucial than ever to keep your customers engaged, and it takes more work to maintain their attention. 81% of consumers say they feel overwhelmed by the number of ads they see online, while 67% say digital ads just aren’t relevant to them.
Luckily, experiential marketing helps you cut through all the clutter. In fact, 93% of consumers say that live events have a bigger influence on them than TV ads. Events and brand activations have a sense of “something special,” resulting in a memorable experience. By providing an immersive experience, with sights, sounds, and perhaps even taste, smell, and touch, your brand creates an impression in your audiences’ minds that will stay with them far longer than any advertisement would. Even for an event that attracts thousands of people, each person will walk away from that event with a unique experience. A great example of a campaign that was an active, engaging experience is Abita Brewery’s Big Easy IPA Pop Up Band Tour. Activities included a live Second Line band, selfie opportunities, sampling of the new flavor, and even a New Orleans style Second Line parade! This memorable experience was far more engaging than traditional advertising or digital could be.
- Make a great first impression
Studies tell us that you have just 7 seconds to make a first impression. Or maybe*** you only have a 10th of a second! Either way, first impressions last: changing that initial impression later on is challenging. It is crucial to make an exceptional first impression on your audience. Once again, experiential excels at this aspect of marketing. Events are a great way to introduce a new product or service to your customers. Assuming you’ve put together a strong event strategy that includes entertaining and educational aspects and friendly brand representatives, events create an atmosphere that predisposes consumers to liking your brand. Events also help customers more easily discover you. A customer may never come across your brand on the internet, but they will have trouble avoiding learning about you when you’re in the same places they are!
The Schwan Food Company used Pro Motion to roll out their new Big Baron frozen pizzas in the Chicago, IL market. Brand ambassadors interacted with customers leaving work, school, public transit, and events and provided free samples of fresh pizza plus frozen pizzas to take home. Over a period of 1 week, we distributed 44,000 frozen pizzas to families across Chicagoland!
Bonus: Brand affinity and brand loyalty
Here’s an extra reason that experiential marketing works so well, that incorporates a lot of the other reasons we provided. Experiential helps to build brand affinity and brand loyalty in consumers because it creates an emotional connection.
What is brand affinity? Some indicators of brand affinity include:
- The likelihood a consumer will stick with a brand or company
- A good chance consumers will refer others to your brand
- When given free choice, a high probability they will choose your brands over others
As people have more and more positive interactions with your brand, the positive feelings they have about you will grow over time. Experiential marketing boosts brand affinity by increasing the likelihood consumers choose your brand over others. When considering a purchase, they will remember the fun experience they had with your company. Additionally, positive customer service experiences increase customer satisfaction, making them more likely to purchase from you in the future. In our next post, we will highlight how you can use “brand fanatics” during events to get customers to identify your brand with excellent customer service.
Pro Motion has years of experience proving to their customers that experiential marketing works. If you’re interested in being the next success story, call us at 636.449.3162 today!
Check out Steve Randazzo’s new book, Brand Experiences: Building Connections in a Digitally Cluttered World. Click here to download free chapters!