Work events are really difficult. Let's be honest: how often did you find yourself anxious with a paper towel in a corner of a stuffy network?
That is the problem: it is not the event itself that prevents you from coming back the following year. It is the experience that you remember having . In this blog post, we will look at some of the best experiences that brands have offered to their customers.
I have a big problem with generic trade shows and industry conferences. That 's why I was not only relieved, but also surprised and delighted when I attended a Christmas party that offered a live interactive version of a game. arcade.
A whole room had been organized to look like a video game were disguised as characters. There was a giant real dash, Boppy electronic music and, most importantly, there was no tedious little talk.
Experiential marketing, also known as "engagement marketing," is marketing. strategy that invites an audience to interact with a business in a real-life situation. By using participatory, practical and tangible brand materials, the company can show its customers not only what it offers, but also what it represents.
Experiential marketing can look like event marketing, which makes sense – experiential campaigns tend to be event-driven. But there are also times when they have nothing to do with a specific event, as you will see in the examples we have chosen.
When an engagement marketing campaign is event focused, it is less dedicated to the type of event. like a concert, a festival, a conference, etc. – and even more so to the interactions between the brand and the customer. (If you already have an event in progress, review this guide to add experiential elements.)
These campaigns can take an integrated approach. The main goal is to make the brand experience tangibly and offline, but you will still need an online dialogue around it. If we consider that 49% of people create mobile video during branded events (39% of which are shared on Twitter), it makes sense to incorporate a digital element. A branded hashtag, for example, can entice people to talk about the experience.
11 examples of the coolest experiential marketing we've ever seen
1. Refinery29: 29Rooms
For about three years, Refinery29, a lifestyle brand, hosts the 29Rooms event: "What it calls" an interactive funhouse of style, culture, and technology. " As its name suggests, it consists of 29 custom rooms and individual brands – and participants can experience different experiences. The rooms are designed and created with branded partners, ranging from artists and musicians to companies such as Dunkin's Donuts, Dyson and Cadillac.
Every year, 29Rooms has a different theme. "Turn it into art." Participants, it seems, are encouraged to enter each room and use the environment to create something: a room, for example, invites participants to put on hand gloves and punch bags to create a room. symphony of sorts A really practical experience, indeed.
Insights for Marketers
- Go ahead, but stay on the front of the stage. An experience must be memorable, but relevant to the participants.
- Collaborate with creators such as artists and musicians to create experiences, especially if they are recognizable in the region where you are trying to create or develop an audience.
2. Red Bull: Stratos
If you were online on October 14, 2012, you probably saw the stream "Stratos" live.
Red Bull is at the forefront of extreme sports coverage since almost the mark has existed. But in 2012, the company took its content marketing to new heights – a world record .
Affectionately named Stratos, Felix Baumgartner, an Austrian paratrooper, is associated with Red Bull to set the world record for the parachute jump.
This record: 128,000 feet, about 24 miles above the surface of the Earth. Gulp.
To achieve this incredible blow, Red Bull hosted Felix in a small communication capsule and sent him into the stratosphere using a large balloon filled with helium. And what is really remarkable is that his ascent and preparation allowed him to beat another record before landing on Earth (spoiler alert): Red Bull broadcast the event online and saw the highest traffic of all live streams. never aired on YouTube – just over 8 million viewers
Want to review this experience? Check out the video summary of Red Bull below. I will not lie, I replayed when I wrote this article.
Takeaways for Marketers
- Do not underestimate the power of suspense when organizing an event that your audience may have. Being able to witness something new and perhaps a little scary is a personal experience. And the better the result will be, the more your audience will remember and remember him.
- Oh, and if you can put your mark in the book while you're there, it's pretty cool.
3. Lean Cooking: #WeighThis
It is disconcerting to see how many ads today tell women to change something about themselves. Sitting on the couch and watching TV for two minutes, I had already lost count of the number of times this message had been broadcast.
That's why it's so refreshing to see brands like Lean Cuisine, including loss marketing, escaping from the food-centric messaging. And his #WeighThis campaign is a good example.
As part of the campaign, Lean Cuisine organized a gallery of "scales" at the Grand Central Station in New York and invited women to "weigh". But here's the problem: the scales were actually small boards where women could write how they really wanted to be weighed. And rather than focusing on their weight in kilos – or on anything related to body image – women chose to be assessed at age 55, to take care of 200 non-disabled children. shelter every day or to be the only supplier of four wires.
What is particularly interesting in this experiment is that none of the participants interacts with a lean cooking product. No one was interrupted, invited to taste something or stopped to answer questions. In fact, no one was really asked to do anything – the display itself was enough for people to stop, watch, and then interact willingly.
Lean Cuisine understood the message he wanted to send: "It fits into a healthy lifestyle, but do not forget your achievements . as the number on the scale. "But instead of blatantly advertising, this has created an interactive experience around the message.
Nevertheless, the experience was clearly marked for people to associate with Lean Cuisine. The company's Twitter descriptor and a branded hashtag appeared on a large text, which facilitated the sharing of experience on social media. And that has certainly paid off – the entire #WeighThis campaign has resulted in more than 204 million impressions.
Takeaway for Marketers
- Do not interrupt, especially if you are trying to attract the attention of someone like Lean Cuisine was. If you create an experience that offers value to people who spend there, they are more likely to participate.
- Determine the message you really want to send to your brand – which may or may not be directly related to a real product, and this could be something that your brand has not said before. Then build an experience around him.
4. Volkwagon: Piano Staircase
Smile, you're on a piano camera!
In 2009, Volkswagen caught the most comical by transforming a subway stairway from Stockholm, Sweden into a giant piano. The next day, each step produced the sound of a different piano touch as people went up and down the stairs. The campaign was part of "The Fun Theory", which suggests that people are more inclined to do something if it sounds funny (I agree).
For Volkswagen, however, the message of was amusing
As the automotive industry began to make great strides in environmentally friendly products, Volkswagen wanted to help make his healthier personal habits. According to Volkswagen – and its partner, DDB Stockholm, an advertising agency – "pleasure is the easiest way to change people's behavior."
According to the video below, 66% escalator to this particular subway terminal, as a result of the Volkswagen piano staircase.
Insights for Marketers
- With every marketing campaign you launch, find the "fun factor". It's easy to know how your brand is helping to solve your customers' problem. But what about them, as people, it would also bring them pleasure ?
- Once you've found the "fun factor" of your campaign, find the "right" factor. Hosting an experience is your chance to have an impact on your community, not just on the users of your product.
5. Google: "Building a Better Bay Area"
Corporate philanthropy is on the rise. Between 2012 and 2014, 56% of companies increased their donations because Google is no exception. But when the search engine giant gave $ 5.5 million to non-profit Bay Area organizations, it allowed the public to decide where the money would go – unconventionally and interactively.
to involve the community of the Bay Area in a tangible way. They installed large interactive posters – in places such as bus shelters, food trucks and restaurants – that residents could use to vote for a cause.
In the video below, the narrator notes that this experience reaches "the people who have the time to make the difference". This is an important aspect of experiential marketing: it allows people to interact with a brand when they have the time. This is perhaps why 72% of consumers say that they positively see brands that offer great experiences.
And this concept works in this experience because it takes advantage of a mentality of "you are already here". In San Francisco, finding people waiting for the bus or going in food trucks is almost a matter of course. While they were "already there", Google has created some opportunities:
- Learn and vote for local non-profit organizations
- Interact with the brand without using its products
- To indirectly on the Google Community
Through the integration of online voting – and a branded hashtag: #GoogleImpactChallenge -, the campaign generated 400,000 votes in three and a half weeks.
- Create a branded hashtag that attendees can use to share their experience on social media. Then make sure you have an online element that allows people to participate in this way.
- Stay informed! It's always nice to have a great company give love to your community. In fact, 72% of people say they would talk to their friends and family about their company's efforts.
- Remember the "you're here already" approach. Find out where your audience is already hanging out and engage them there, instead of trying to get them to act where they do not usually spend their time.
6. Misereor: Billboard for charitable donations
What was the last time you used money to pay for something?
Hard to remember, right? We are kind of like "blind skaters" – globally, it is estimated that $ 357 billion of non-monetary transactions are made each year. And knowing how often we take out our cards, the German relief NGO Misereor has decided to take advantage of our bad habit with its charity display board.
This was what they called SocialSwipe. Installed at airports, these digital posters would present images of problems that Misereor strives to solve – hunger was represented with a loaf of bread, for example.
But the screen was equipped with a card reader and when someone was going to drag a card – for a small fee of 2 € – the picture moved to give the Impression that the card was cutting a slice of bread.
Even cooler? On the user's bank statement, there would be a message of thanks from Misereor, with a link to turn their single donation of € 2 into a monthly donation.
Needless to say, this experiment required a lot of coordination – with banks, airports and a mobile payment platform. Because of this, the experience could not be a unique event. People who interacted with her were later recalled at a fairly common event: receiving a bank statement.
Insights for Marketers
- Represent visually the impact of participation in the experiment. The people who were interacting with this exhibit were shown exactly where their money was going – like slicing bread for a hungry family. (Infographics work well here too – check out our models.)
- Collaborate with another brand to create an even better experience. In this case, Misereor worked with Stripe.com for payment technology and with financial institutions to obtain a branded message on users' bank statements. (And stay tuned – we'll talk later about the value of co-branding later.)
- Do not be afraid to feed your prospects. Even if you do not use something like a branded hashtag to incorporate experience into an online item, find a way to remind someone that he or she has participated.
7. Guinness: Guinness Class
One of my favorite types of marketing is the "ambitious" type – or, as the Harvard Business Review defines it, marketing for brands that "fall in the upper right quadrant". Think about luxury cars, haute couture and private jets. What we aspire to possess.
This is the latter – the private jets – that distinguishes the experience of the Guinness class. For a few weeks, ambassadors dressed in board uniforms from the Guinness brand entered UK bars, where they surprised unsuspecting customers by allowing them to win all kinds of prizes.
pint of Guinness. After that, they would shake a price-generating mobile tablet that would show what they have earned. They could win everything from passport lockers to key chains, but one player per night would get the ultimate prize: a free trip to Dublin – via private jet, of course – with four partners.
His ability to associate Guinness with something aspirational, like traveling in a private jet. And according to Nick Britton, marketing manager of Guinness Western Europe, who has made the brand a company that is "not content with the ordinary".
It is important – and can be difficult – for a brand that is approaching 257 years: maintain its authenticity while adapting to a changing landscape and audience. But Guinness did not have to change anything about its actual products in this case. Instead, he created an experiment on changing consumer preferences – for example, the fact that 78% of Millennials prefer to spend money on a memorable experience or event.
things your target audience may aspire to and associate with your brand. Then create an experience about it.
If you need a product purchase to participate in the experience, make it convenient. In this case, people had to buy a pint of Guinness to win a prize, but they were already in a bar that had served it.
8. GE: Healthymagination
Remember that experiential marketing only concerns B2C brands? Think again – 67% of B2B marketers say that events are one of the most effective strategies that they use. The purpose of the campaign was to promote global health solutions, particularly in developing regions.
To help people see the impact of this initiative, GE collaborated with agencyEA to create venues: an African rural clinic , an urban clinic and an emergency room. The idea was that doctors would share their stories – live, in front of 700 participants – to illustrate how GE's health technology played a major role in every context.
One measure that they measure when people measure the success of experiential marketing is how much dialogue it has invited. And that makes sense – 71% of participants share these experiences. In the case of GE, the goal of HealthMagination was to get people to talk about a very important but uncomfortable problem: access to health care in poor areas of the world.
But when you create a way for people It also allows them to recognize a topic that is not always easy to talk about. And this can have a considerable impact – in fact, this particular campaign has won the Tour Award from the Commercial Marketing Association.
But do not be afraid: this concept also works for topics that are not so serious, but just as uncomfortable. Just look how it worked for Charmin.
Takeaways for Marketers
- Experiential marketing works for B2B brands. Think about who you are selling and create a commitment that will not only attract that audience, but will also offer an opportunity for them to experience your product or service.
- Be uncomfortable. If your business is focusing on something difficult or "taboo", creating an experience around it can trigger a conversation. But be sure to keep it respectful – do not put people so badly that they have nothing good to say about your brand.
9. Facebook: Facebook IQ Live
Facebook – who also owns Instagram – has always figured out how much data he has on how people are using these platforms. For this reason, he created the Facebook IQ Live experience.
For this experiment, these data were used to organize live scenes describing the data. Among these, let's mention IQ Mart: a "retail" setting that represented the online customer's conversion path when using social media for purchase decisions. There was also an Instagram coffee par excellence, full of opportunities for millenary photos and people who photographed them – the art of latte and everything in between.
The campaign was not only memorable. This also proved very useful – 93% of participants (and more than 1,500 of them) said that the experience had provided them with valuable information about the use of Facebook for companies.
Momentum Worldwide, the agency behind Facebook IQ Live, expresses it perfectly: "When we understand what matters to people … we can be what matters to them." In other words, we can shape our message according to what is important for our target audiences.
And by creating this experience, Facebook has been able to accomplish this for its own brand. In creating this experience, she also created a positive brand perception for a few audiences – including, for example, people who may not have known how to use the platform for businesses.
Experience for people who do not know how to use your product or service. Find ways to interact with your brand in a creative way that will explain how it can benefit them.
Bring your life to life. We love numbers, but creating a live live that illustrates them can help people understand exactly what they mean. And since 65% of people think live events help them understand a product, this setting is a great place to do it.
10. Zappos: "Google Cupcake Ambush"
To help promote its new photo app, Google has made it to the streets of Austin, Texas, with a cupcake truck. But people did not pay cupcakes with dollars – instead, the only accepted currency was a photo taken with the said application.
And really, what's better than a free cupcake? We will tell you what: a watch or a pair of free-ish shoes.
That was Zappos' answer, anyway. That's why the brand has "embarrassed" with enthusiasm Google's experience in the sector of food trucks with one of its own business: a box placed next to Google, of course, who distributed a container with a small cake.
To reap the fruits of the Zappos box, you had to have a cupcake. So while only one brand came out of the experiment with a high sugar level, both had lots of exposures. And as 74% of consumers say that a brand experience makes them more inclined to buy discounted products, Google and Zappos are both able to win new customers.
the value of experiential co-marking. Because Google and Zappos pursue two different business sectors, they did not sabotage each other, but rather promoted themselves (which happens when you choose the right co-marketer).
Takeaways for Marketers
- Use experiential marketing as a co-branding opportunity.
- Choose a partner with an audience who would be interested in your brand, but who might otherwise be hard to reach.
- Make sure your partner would also benefit from your hearing – – you want the experience to be a win-win situation: for you, your co-brand and the consumer.
- When choosing a marketing partner, create an experience that requires an "exchange" of the product of each brand or service. In this way, the audience is more likely to interact with you two.
11. Docker: Docker Dash
Docker is a software platform that allows developers to create and run applications on different operating systems – a technology called "containerization". According to some standards, this is not the sexiest product you can buy. According to the standards of a company, it is not even the product the easiest to understand. Enter: Docker Dash.
In partnership with Jack Morton, Docker used its developer conference, DockerCon 2017, to develop its corporate market with a unique product demo called Docker Dash. What makes it so unique? It was not a demo – it was a game. And the guests of the conference were not guests – they were players.
Docker Dash was a live simulation of the Docker application platform, and recruited 5,000 participants to create an application together. challenges within the game. Each challenge presented in Docker Dash allowed "players" to launch a Docker product feature and complete their application. It was a fun and collaborative way to show business software developers why Docker was investing in the containerization market and the value these products could derive from its products.
Docker Dash has attracted the attention of more than 3.6 million people and published on the event from social media, in addition to those who attended DockerCon in person.
Take-away shopping for marketers