Experiential Events Keep Luxury Brands Relevant, Mixing Retro and Tech to Engage Audiences, & How One Brand Experience Can Equal a Year’s Worth of Marketing (The White Board)

When brands invest in experiential events, often they are looking to achieve a variety of goals. Many are looking to increase sales and win new customers by building brand loyalty through intimate consumer interactions. Others use experiential events to launch or test a new product or service before large-scale distribution. Some see experiential as a prime way to reach Millennials, who value experiences over traditional advertising. This week, the Elevate White Board features an article that explores how luxury brands are using marketing events to stay relevant. Other White Board articles cover the 3 golden rules of experiential budgets, and why CPG brands need experiential.

How Experiential Helps Luxury Brands Stay Relevant

Almost by definition, luxury brands depend on their brand and reputation to drive sales. It is often the brand itself that people are purchasing, and the quality and status that goes along with it.

One of the largest challenges facing luxury brands is that high-end consumer preferences are shifting. As the article points out, “luxury brands are aligning with meaningful causes and influencers to appeal to luxury consumers’ growing desire to feel their purchases are part of something bigger than themselves.” And one of the best ways they have found to create these partnerships is through experiential events. From cognac to Chanel, these are examples of how luxury brands use experiences to stay relevant.

Add Vintage to High Tech to Achieve Unforgettable Experiences

The rise of the digital era has revolutionized how we live. Online commerce has forced brick-and-mortar stores to rethink how they do, well, everything. Streaming entertainment has left traditional networks and movie studios scrambling to provide content in a new and relevant way.

But, what we have also learned is that digital isn’t everything. In fact, the increasing popularity and effectiveness of experiential is often seen as the foil to a digital world. Yet, as the article points out, by layering the two, both are better. The author says that “the idea behind layering is to strategically blend technology with personal components to create multi-faceted interactions.” Read on.

3 Places to Pad Your Experiential Marketing Budget

With each passing year, more brands are either launching an experiential strategy, or investing more in one they have. In fact, a recent study showed that “more than one in three CMOs expects to set aside 21 to 50 percent of their budgets for brand experiences, including ‘events, trade shows, sponsorships, exhibits, permanent installations, virtual or augmented reality experiences and/or pop-ups.’”

With this increasing investment, proving ROI and effectively managing experiential budgets is critical. Careful attention to every aspect of experiential events is important. But, there are some pieces that brands should be hyper-focused on investing in. These are the 3 golden rules of experiential budgeting. And spoiler alert: one is investing in Elevate’s favorite event asset – the people who represent you on site.

5 Brands that Use High-Tech Digital Art to Engage Consumers

One of the primary challenges in designing a brand experience is ensuring your event is engaging and resonates with attendees. Experiential events present brands with an immense opportunity to reach potential customers, and making a great impression can have financial benefits for years to come.

One way that brands are standing out and exciting consumers is by blending technology and art. This marriage results in experiences that allow attendees to create something fun and meaningful. But, for the brand, they also generate content that people can’t resist sharing. Event Marketer reports on 5 top brands that use a digital art strategy to make their events extraordinary.

Why CPG Brands Should Embrace Experiential

For many years, CPG companies have relied in large part on the value of a strong brand name to stay on top of their competitors. And, like many brands, these companies are focused on courting Millennials and securing them as loyal customers. It is for these reasons that these companies are taking pause.

As AdAge recently reported, Millennials, the generation that recently overtook baby boomers as the largest living generation, don’t care so much about brands. They want more out of the companies they choose to buy from. Authenticity, collaboration, and relevance is what drives them. And experiential is a great way to communicate these characteristics. In fact, the article says that “Experiential offers CPG marketers the ability to create conversations that place people’s interest at the center of a brand, and the brand in the center of their lives.” They make a compelling case explaining why CPG needs experiential to stay in the game.

Getting a Year’s Worth of Marketing from One Brand Experience

Experiential events are seen as a way to create a two-way, meaningful conversation with consumers. This conversation makes a brand more relatable, and often allows consumers to try a product or service before they buy it. The tangible experience is the benefit that experiential holds over all other forms of marketing.

But, despite data showing how effective marketing events are, many companies feel they struggle in showing immediate event ROI. While there are many technology tools and amplification techniques that can aid in this pursuit, there are other ways to show a return. The truth is, experiential events are incredible drivers for content. Reports show that 98% of people who attend an event will create content, and 100% of them will share it. And that is outside of what your marketing team will gather, develop and distribute. Here are several ways that a single event can produce astounding dividends for your content marketing strategy.

2018 Event Tech to Watch

Each year we look forward to the “best-of”s that look back at the previous year and look forward to the next. Since technology is one of the main catalysts for change in experiential, often quite a bit of attention is paid to what is up-and-coming in the new year. And with the rate at which tech is changing, there is always plenty to talk about.

This 2018 technology review by BizBash taps the expertise and insight of some of the top leaders in the event industry. Here they discuss augmented reality, facial recognition, and a multitude of other advancements that are changing the way we engage with audiences, clients, and more. One contributor sums it up: “It will be about integrating the most suitable technology to meet stakeholder objectives and participants’ desires for ease of access, personalization, and for many, a sense of ‘cool,’ all tying into the experience.”

Why Your Phone is the Future of Experiential Marketing

It goes without saying, but phones do not fill the same role as they once did. The stationary handset with an answering machine nestled nearby has become as foreign to society as a VCR or an analog radio. Now a phone is not a phone. It is your work, in the form of email, internet, and your calendar. It is your home life, housing all your passwords, photos, and even your wallet.

But for event marketers, it is one of the best personalization and event engagement tools available. By designing events that incorporate these devices, you can capitalize on technology that is readily available that attendees already know how to use. Here are 4 ways that event marketers can use cell phones to their advantage.

Author: Kelly Springs-Kelley

Kelly Springs-Kelley is the Marketing Director at Elevate Staffing. When she's not creating content or pondering the future of in-person consumer engagement, Kelly can be found hiking the mountains of Arizona with her 2 kids and 3 dogs.

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