In this blog we will discuss is How To Best Utilize Experiential Marketing for your business. We will focus on experiential marketing initiatives that drive ROI and allow you to gain better traction with consumers, and their counterparts. Often there is a drive to determine your customer profiles based on analytics and data through technological systems. When you utilize experiential marketing it allows you to create long-lasting relationships, have special moments in time with real-life customers, and physically see customer reactions, all while raising brand awareness.
Creating face value with your clients and customers allows transparency and allows a deeper connection to be made between the consumer and brand. Experiences, activations, and community outreach are all versions of experiential marketing initiatives, and often their success depends on what works best for your customer base and how often you do them.
This is a quick breakdown of how to best utilize experiential marketing for your business. As a business owner, this will help you go against the grain and push boundaries when it comes to raising brand awareness and targeting your audience.
What Is Experiential Marketing?
Experiential marketing is a way for you to create long-lasting relationships with your customer base, and collect real-time data within the moment of an interaction. This allows you to see important and real customer reactions and have an active understanding of your products and how they are viewed in the eyes of the public consumer. By creating experiences between your consumer and your brand, you add face-to-face value, that allows you to captivate the audience, and focus more on building community.
Raising brand awareness is one of the most important things you can do for your business in terms of wanting to achieve goals and raise sales targets, see an increase in revenue, and actively try to seek ROI. Experiential Marketing is being able to show your clientele and customers what kind of brand you are, how much you care about the consumers of that brand, and how open you are to listening to feedback and criticism.
Types Of Experiential Marketing
1. Events – pop-ups, socials, concerts, free workshops
2. Experiential marketing tactics
3. Auto shows
4. Trade shows
7. Test drives
10. In-person surveys
11. In-store experiences – coupon games, photo booths, celebrity guests, shopping nights
12. Face-to-face marketing
Raising Brand Awareness
Brand awareness represents your customer base and how familiar your target audience is within your brand. It also determines how well onlookers recognize it. Companies with high brand awareness are generally referred to as trending, “hot right now”, or popular, such as Sweet Green, Louis Vuitton & Apple.
Establishing brand awareness is valuable and at the core is a major part of your business’s foundation for success. By fostering followers and fans, gaining their trust and respect as a brand, you can utilize your brand awareness to help successfully launch new campaigns, products, and continue to grow your business. Raising brand awareness is important at all stages of your business, but most importantly during the early stages when you’re launching a new company. You’ll most likely already be using traditional marketing and promoting your companies products, which will likely lead to those long-lasting emotional relationships, and make it even easier for your brand down the road when you have a potential re-branding or sell or switch ownership.
Consumers & Experience
Experiential marketing is often overlooked, as it is not viewed as a key part of a digital marketing strategy. In a 2014 Eventbrite study, more than three out of four millennials would choose to spend money on an experience, rather than purchasing something more desirable. This speaks volumes to a company or brand because they can continually utilize this information for activations near and far. The ability to have experienced something and done something that garners a story to tell, rather than have something materialistic and tangible, to millennials is often way more important.
Building Brand Relationships
Trust, authenticity, patience, and emotions. Building a strong long-lasting relationship with your consumers is something you need to do right off the bat. The little things, the giving-back, the ability to reach your brand that much further. The importance of building brand relationships is in the hands of the consumer, as they often can make or break your business.
In the digital age with social media, we use social listening tools to determine and hear feedback from customers, collaborate and coordinate with their wants and needs, and have the ability to gain real-time feedback from the customers who are wanting their voices and opinions to be heard. The downfall of these tools is that we often lose the face-to-face connection in which experiential marketing can fix.
Utilizing Experiential Marketing
Experiential marketing works for the simple fact that traditional marketing is dying off and digital marketing is stepping in. Often experiential marketing initiatives are tied in with digital marketing or social media campaigns, for the simple fact of sharing the user experience online.
Traditional marketing can be defined by the ability to communicate the benefits of your products or services through avenues like billboards, TV, and radio. Experiential Marketing takes your brand to the next level by drawing out your current, past, and new potential customers and getting them to experience first-hand what you have to offer.
Does Experiential Marketing Work for Every Business?
In most cases, experiential marketing can be an added measure to draw focus for a certain campaign, usually working for a variety of different business types. Although it may work for your opponent’s business, the simple answer is no, experiential marketing does not work for every business. This success depends on your customer base, target audience and the niche you may be in. Other reasons that Experiential Marketing may not work for your specific business are as follows:
1 . Difficulty measuring success – the ability to not always see the reactions in real-time (ie. hiring external experiential teams).
2. Reach too low – positioning brand ambassadors in only one physical place of your target audience.
3. Brand reservations – do not want to appear “cheap” or lackluster.
4. Lack of creative ideas – the inability to execute on experiential marketing initiatives within a certain funding budget.
5. Not well targeted – the wrong place or wrong time for your specific products.
6. It doesn’t drive advocacy – people underappreciating the “free” products or experiences.
7. Won’t payback/ROI – the cost for your business to execute, without having the traceability for ensuring your ROI.
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