In-person marketing can take many forms. Trade shows, brand activations, sponsorships, experiential; all these strategies involve face-to-face brand interactions. There is plenty of data demonstrating the value of taking marketing off line. As a result, brands understand the importance of incorporating these strategies to drive loyalty and growth. And now, with the development and use of new technology and experiential marketing tools, there are ways to gather data and show marketing impact.
Yet, brands are struggling as it relates to understanding which tools are right for their specific industry, tactics, and goals. This week, the Elevate White Board begins with an article that explores a recent study showing how challenging incorporating technology is. We also cover setting achievable goals for your trade show exhibit, and why experiential is a movement, not a trend.
Consumers and marketers alike love experiential. Experience marketing often provides positive exposure and gives brands an engagement opportunity they can’t get anywhere else. And as technology continues to advance, the tools that are available help events not only show their value, but collect critical consumer data and feedback.
But because there are so many options, many brands are discovering a challenge related to identifying exactly what tools will work for their activation. In a recent blog post, Skift takes a closer look at performance metrics related to marketing events and how companies are measuring them. In addition to identifying the right experiential marketing tools, the article also points out that, “the disconnect between how successful an event was, and the marketing or technology elements that enabled that success, is often unclear because of a lack of strategy.” Here the company explores results from a survey conducted by event automation service Certain and Heinz Marketing about the tech challenges marketers are facing.
For many companies, trade shows are a valuable in increasing brand visibility, developing partnerships and increasing sales. But, like any marketing strategy, there is an optimal and a less-than optimal way to approach these events. Before attending, it’s important to explore whether your brand is doing everything it can to reach the greatest potential of each trade show.
The first place to start is with goal setting. You likely already have goals in place, but it’s important to explore if your goals are both measurable and achievable. Exponents recently published a helpful blog post on designing tradeshow goals that are ambitious, but also realistic. And once you have your objectives in place, the rest of the planning process can commence in earnest.
The growing popularity of experiential marketing is hard to ignore. More brands are seeing the benefits experiences to build a better brand relationship with consumers. But the need for brands to produce compelling experiences has also increased. And for many, adding an artistic and creative element speaks to audiences in deep and meaningful ways. These artistic elements are multi-sensory – they can involve visual, auditory, or tactile experiences.
One top creative agency is Bernstein & Andriulli, whose goal is to “authentically align a brand and its experience with creators that have a similar aesthetic, passion, and voice to the cause.” Here, Pop2Life talks with B&A’s senior brand experience agent, Alma Lacour to discuss the evolution of the company, the art of bringing creativity to brand activation, and her predictions for what’s to come in experiential.
When it comes creating the next experiential event, brands often need to think outside the box. Innovation keeps attendees interested and a brand relevant. But reality is also an issue. Most of the time, companies are limited by budget, or need to work within the constraints of a space. In the case of the latter, it is often the marketing team’s challenge to use a small space to make a big impact on consumers. To combat these constraints, one option is to build up rather than out.
By creating a multi-level or vertical footprint, brands can execute elaborate events with the added benefit of creating footprints that stand out from the crowd. Event Manager blog provides us with examples that show how brands can use this type of space. From adding an LED chandelier to a fully-functioning second level, there are many creative options to choose from.
On March 8, the world celebrated International Women’s Day, celebrated in honor of ”unity , celebration, reflection, advocacy and action – whatever that looks like globally at a local level.” For the more than 100 years that this day has been observed, there is a call to action for gender parity, or the statistical measure that compares a particular indicator among women . This year’s campaign was “Press for Progress” in which people choose what they advocate for, and work towards, pursuant to this goal.
This campaign and celebration of women is recognized by countries all over the world, and many companies are also spreading awareness and action. This year, with the momentum brought by the #metoo and #timesup movements, several brands saw the importance of taking a stance for gender parity. And they are not just spreading awareness. These companies are designing campaigns to amplify the Press for Progress call to action.
During the planning of a brand activation, marketers establish the metrics they want to collect, and the goals they are pursing. One that is measured often is engagement. Engagement provides data both about the impact that the event had on consumers, as well as whether the tactics were effective.
When determining consumer engagement strategies, brands are wise to get creative. From photo booths and to prize drawings to virtual reality and art installations, the way consumers take part in your event can be customized to communicate brand values, as well as entertain. Brands can also tie data collection into these experiential marketing tools, such as requiring contact information to retrieve a photo or enter a sweepstakes.
One tactic that many marketers are integrating is gamification. Yet, some brands are unsure about how they can incorporate it into their unique activation. BizBash recently partnered with MeetingPlay to create a guide on how to incorporate this highly-engaging technique into your next event.
This year’s South By Southwest (SXSW) festival in Austin just wrapped up. Since day one, there have been reports, articles and photos highlighting some of the best brand activations of 2018. But, once again, some marketers continued the debate on whether the festival is still “worth” participating in. AdWeek sat down with their advisory board, made up of about 24 key leaders in the industry, and discussed what SXSW does well, and where it is falling short.
Some of the topics they discussed included the sheer volume of activations, the collaborations of different industries, and the networking abilities. For each topic, they discuss both the positive and negatives, providing a well-rounded, insightful article for anyone interested in the SXSW phenomenon.
Galentines day. Nope, that’s not a typo. Since its start, first introduced in the television series Parks and Recreation, this extension of the Valentine’s Day holiday encourages women to pamper themselves and have a fun day together. The unofficial holiday is a celebration of female friendships, and another reason for brands in the retail industry to engage female shoppers.
A prime example of brands diving head first into this “holiday” is this year’s Mars popup in New York. Mars created an Instagram-worthy experiential footprint in which they gave consumers an opportunity to treat themselves (figuratively and literally). The experience included full salon services, and while the Galentine’s Day participants waited, they had the opportunity to relax at the Mars candy bar. Event Marketer published a detailed summary.