Content is king. From video to static content, advertising can be effective in helping brands get their message to consumers. But ads alone are not enough. The need to reach consumers on a personal level has helped give rise to the popularity of experiential marketing. And while brand activations are powerful, they are limited to those in attendance. Brands are smart to amplify the impact of every brand activation through event-generated content.
A content strategy executed in conjunction with an activation can turn a single-event into a viral phenomenon. But there are different avenues a brand can choose when deciding which types of content to invest in. Recently, Entrepreneur published an article that provides 4 strategies for companies to consider when planning content development within an experiential campaign. From user-generated content to tapping into influencers, brands need to find opportunities to engage customers who attended their brand activation and use them to carry the brand message further.
Experiential has a slew of benefits. By brand awareness, social engagement, direct consumer engagement, and even sales, brands can reach a return on investment in the short- and long-term. Yet, the planning process for each activation can be long and require immense detail. If all variables are not considered, there can be significant loss.
Many event marketers have a system to ensure that all processes and planning procedures lead to consumer-engagement success. But for those marketers and brands that are just getting started in experiential, there might be fear of failure related to implementing different activation techniques, But that level of paranoia might be a good thing, according to AdWeek. The articles recommendation? Go ahead and indulge in the “what ifs,” envision the worst-case scenario, and plan from there.
It was just a few years ago that, in the U.S., more than 7,000 stores closed their doors due to low sales figures. This occurrence, not surprisingly, spurred speculation that the days of physical retail were soon to be a thing of the past. But, 2018 proved that the retailpocolypse was just that – speculation. Many brick and mortar stores are thriving. Successful retailers saw that consumers weren’t opposed to leaving the comforts of their home; they were uninspired by traditional physical shopping. eCommerce was winning out due to convenience, not preference. To lure shoppers through shop doors, retailers had to move away from in-store displays and towards in-store experiences.
The impact of this change has meant that retail real estate has also changed and will continue to develop into 2019. With this new approach comes new predictions for what’s to come. Here Fast Company offers their take on the 6 ways retail will continue to transform in 2019.
Over the past few years, the fitness industry has grown. This has been, in large part, due to an increasing number of people who are focused on improving their health. And with more information available related to the impact of nutrition and exercise, health and fitness has become an effective way for brands to engage with customers at events and conferences. In fact, wellness has seen such a large increase in popularity that brands like Propel are creating sold out brand-hosted events.
Even more, we are seeing companies partner with other brands to create bigger and more engaging experiences that appeal to both physical health and mental wellness. From Jaybird’s partnership with meditation app, Headspace, to Swisse vitamins creating a Dream Dome within Wanderlust 108, consumers are responding to and welcoming these types of brand engagement opportunities.
Trust is a hard thing to come by. By definition, it is the feeling that someone (or something) is “knowledgeable, reliable, good, honest and effective.” This doesn’t only apply to interpersonal relationships, but every relationship in a person’s life. When brands put trust first, they create a competitive advantage, especially since, in recent years, consumers have begun to trust brands less. Companies cannot rely solely on a good product – they have to align with consumers in personal and meaningful ways.
Brands will stand out by building trust with consumers that is strong enough to encourage both initial and future purchase. And the best way to build a trusting relationship? By humanizing the brand.
Technology has been the single largest driver of societal change and, as a result, is a hot topic. Whether we are looking to the hot new innovations of 2019 or pondering the directions that tech can take us in the future, people need to understand the impact that our new world will have on our lives. The biggest topic de jour? Artificial intelligence, or AI. The internet of things (IoT) and AI are the concepts and mechanisms behind our asking Alexa, Google assistant or Siri any question and its power to give us an immediate response.
For brands, the advantage is predicting and solving real-world problems with and for customers. According to Jack Morton Worldwide, there are 3 important technological shifts that will allow brands to see into the future – and anticipate behavior. These key technological changes, coupled with a continually-advancing AI database, is allowing brands to directly and personally reach their customers in ways that have never before been possible.
Elevate Staffing exists to connect people with brands. And one of the ways that we do that is by identifying the best people to represent each of our clients. We use a multitude of factors in deciding who to hire for each event – personality, experience, and professionalism, to name a few. But we also take it a step further. We select ambassadors who are already invested in the client’s brand. We look for avid gamers to represent VR brands; beauty bloggers to conduct make-up demonstrations. We hire people who aren’t just good brand ambassadors, but brand champions.
Brand champions align themselves with a brand and embody the company’s values. This embodiment makes them an extended representation of a brand and an added asset to the company’s social visibility. Not only this, but brand champions help build trust with consumers by giving the brand increased credibility. In this article, the former CEO of Calvin Klein outlines those qualities that he believes define a brand champion– the very qualities that brands should look for in their brand ambassadors.
Black Mirror: Bandersnatch Gets Meta Pop-Up Stores in the UK
These days it’s not enough to simply create content for people to consume. As technology advances and allows for increased interaction, consumers are demanding more engagement. Platforms like virtual reality and augmented reality amplify content-related experiences, which in turn encourages consumers to come back for more. Inspired by this idea, Netflix recently produced “Bandersnatch,” an interactive film based on their popular “Black Mirror” series that allows viewers to choose the direction of the storyline.
But for live experience-forward Netflix, this wasn’t enough. They took the storyline and built several Bandersnatch pop-up shops across the United Kingdom. Rather than use their remotes to choose their own adventure within Bandersnatch, fans could physically immerse themselves in the story and find Easter egg secrets about the film along the way. Check out the full details of the Netflix pop up here.