With brands showing up in consumers’ faces everyday with new products and services, the competition for attention is now stronger than ever. Your brand’s 30secs ads on the radio, TV or social media may not achieve all that you aim to achieve, especially when the aim is to increase brand engagement and retention. Consumers build perception about brands based on their personal experience with brands. For example, a consumer is more likely to talk about a launch event he/she attended to a friend than a 30secs ad they saw on TV. An average consumer is exposed to at least 100 ads per day, both offline and online. This makes it hard to pick which one to talk about especially if they are all pushing the same genre of product/service into the consumers’ face.
According to Jenna Marone, Executive Vice President, Lifestyle, United Entertainment Group, brands need to break into the personal feeds of consumers. Personal feeds are shared by consumers to expose others to what they think, see and care about. Brands can’t break into these feeds without consumers experiencing a brand’s product/service personally, especially B2C brands.
Experiential marketing also known as engagement marketing is a marketing strategy which allows audience and brand consumers to interact with the products and services of a brand while also learning about the brand’s business execution and culture. It gives your target audience the opportunity to experience your products or services without necessarily purchasing.
Through experiential, the audience becomes your indirect marketers and ambassadors as they can share their experience and knowledge of your brand with their community, both offline and online using word of mouth and social media posts. Imagine having a product launch event with over 500 attendees and each attendee shares their experience at the event while also talking about your product with 50 others in their community, this means your product information reaches 25,000 persons. These persons also share these products with their communities, and reach 50 others as well. So, without using billboards, radio jingles and TV commercials, you were able to reach over one hundred thousand people based on your product launch.
Also, experiential marketing gives you a competitive advantage because you are able to answer questions and clarify issues raised by your targets thereby getting insights into how they think, behave and purchase. This will guide your future marketing plans and product development based on the data you gathered while engaging them. It will also guide your product development.
This is not to dispose other marketing strategies but to emphasize the importance of brand engagement in building a lasting brand perception and retention. This is because people are more likely to share experiences without being paid to do so or whether it is attached to a brand or not and less likely to share an ad that just pops up on their screen every 10 minutes.
Also, if you want people to share more than the basics about your brand; if you want them to share your brand value, engaging them using experiential marketing is the tool as it also helps you to build loyalty. People are likely to come back for subsequent experiences and even invite others based on the previous experience they had with your brand. Therefore, if you are a new brand trying to storm the market or an existing brand looking to increase engagement or planning to launch a new product, experiential marketing is your “jazz”.
Source: The Future of Experiential Marketinghttps://adage.com/article/cmo-strategy/amp-spotlight-future-experiential-marketing/2185416