Why Experiential Marketing Is A Must In 2020

Tamara Cvitković

Customer Support Agent

⏱ Reading Time: 7 minutes

The purpose of any marketing campaign is clear: building brand awareness and boosting sales. However, with so many competitors on the market, sometimes it’s hard to stand out. Traditional marketing activities such as display ads or banner ads simply won’t cut anymore.

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According to one study, as many as 81% of consumers feel overwhelmed with the number of commercials they consume and 67% do not find ads relevant to them.  The world is changing and along with it – advertising campaigns. People want to feel engaged, they want to feel special, and that’s why there is a growing trend of experiential marketing.

If you are not sure what it is and how to apply it to your business model – let us walk you through it. 

What Exactly is Experiential Marketing?

Experiential marketing is an advertising approach where customers are encouraged to engage with the brand and create their own memorable experience.  When you offer something different to your clients they are more likely to associate your product with the positive feeling. That positive feeling leads to an increase in customer satisfaction and loyalty thus reducing the dreadful customer churn. 

Examples can vary from product sampling, free trials to big events when launching a new product or service. Now that we defined what it entails we can move on to the benefits of it below.

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Experiential marketing

Picture 1. Definition of experiential marketing

What Are the Benefits of Experiential Marketing? 

1. Engaging Customers

If you succeed in creating a great experience for your customer they will be more likely to share that experience with others and write about it on their social media posts – giving your business extra exposure and more visibility for free. You can even add some hashtag custom made for the special event and that way increase your reach in no time.

2. Cultivating Long-term Relationship with Clients 

Nowadays, it’s easy to switch between the brands so it’s important to establish a meaningful relationship with your clients. Whether you will share content tailored to their needs or allow them to participate in engaging activities, it’s up to you. But by building that bond between your brand and your customers, you create a loyal customer base that every business profits from. 

Read Customer Relations: What Is the Road to Loyal Customers? 

3. Collecting Data

In marketing data is everything. The more you know about your customers, their needs and preferences you can better adjust your marketing strategy or decide in which direction your brand should go when, for example, developing a new product.

Some Examples of Experiential Marketing Strategies

One would think that in order to do experiential marketing right, you need to have a big budget for creating elaborate events. More important than big-budget, however, is creativity and the ability to entice your customers. Here are some examples of the most known experiential marketing forms that might give you some ideas if you opt for this type of marketing: 

Product Sampling

Let’s be real, people tend to try new stuff, especially if the stuff is free. Sometimes they will try a new type of coffee or great exotic cheese from a local supermarket. The most common thing on the Internet is offering a free trial for your product. Why? Because trying leads to buying. Try it!

Paldesk free trial example

Picture 2. Paldesk free trial

Street Teams 

Street teams should contain highly motivated people with great communication skills and knowledge of the brand. Main goal of the street team is engaging the customers in their environment offering them a free sample of the product or inviting them to participate in some fun activity. With street teams, you also have the opportunity to collect your feedback right there on the spot, so research the best possible location to place your team where they are most likely to interact with your target audience. 

Guerilla Marketing

As the name suggests, guerilla marketing is a type of marketing heavily relying on the element of surprise. It can be something like a carefully choreographed flash mob, a stunt or graffiti in an unexpected place. There are endless possibilities for executing guerilla marketing strategy, but the main take is this: it’s important that it is unexpected and that involves the public reacting with the brand.

A great example of guerilla marketing is a very simple idea executed by GoldToe underwear company. While promoting their new type of underwear, they placed the underwear on the statues all across New York. People were buzzing about it; they were taking pictures and in doing so, creating a free advertisement for the brand. Not so bad for a pair of panties. 

Read How to Spot Native Advertising?

GoldToe underwear experiential marketing example

Picture 3. GoldToe underwear guerilla marketing example

Image Marketing

The power of photography is unprecedented in marketing. It can capture customers’ attention faster than any slogan and leave a lasting impression. It’s no wonder that Instagram, an app heavily relying on visuals, has become one of the most popular social media platforms. 

But how to incorporate photography into an experience? Try creating photo booths and place them in the location you know your customers visit. Add some visual props to further strengthen their association with the brand and watch as they take funny pictures and share their experience on social media. 

Pop-up Stores 

Pop-up stores are a great way to make your customers fully emerged in everything your brand has to offer. Provide your customers with a unique experience of colors, smell, and taste and create your own world where customers can buy your products for a fraction of the cost or test out your new products or services. 

Be careful, though, because in recent times, pop-up stores have become so frequent that it’s not longer enough just to set up your pop-up store and wait for customers to rush to you; you have to stand out. An excellent example of a pop-up store was made by Converse when launching their Renew Canvas collection, made out of recycled plastic bottles. They showcased their support for sustainability by creating a pop-up store entirely of reusable materials and hosted workshops on upcycling garments, further branding their new collection as eco friendly and sustainable. 

Event Marketing

Event marketing is often mistaken with experiential marketing. While they are similar and often interchangeable, event marketing can be a live presentation of the product, for example, and offer limited customer interaction, whereas in experiential marketing, the primary purpose is to interact and engage with your customers. 

Guinness had a great marketing campaign back in 2017. where they partnered with Tesco and offered their customers free tasting of their famous beer with the help of a VR setting. They had a virtual guide who helped them better understand what they were drinking and how drinks were made. They even included a cup with a built-in chip to upgrade their sensory experience. Talk about product sampling on a whole new level! Customers were immersed in the Guiness world, and got the chance to experience the product with all their senses. And that’s what experiential marketing is all about!

Guiness beer

Picture 4. Guinness Uses VR To Enhance Sampling Experiences At Tesco

In Conclusion

Though none of us could have predicted the year 2020 and events that will follow – social distancing making it hard for brands to create elaborate events and interact with their customers in the real world, there are still opportunities for experiential marketing.

We tried to give you some general information in this article and outlined some of the best practices and ideas in recent years, but in the end it all comes to this; understanding what your brand is all about and delivering that message to your customers. After all, the year is 2020 and nothing is impossible: a little technology and a great deal of creativity can go a long way. 


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Why Experiential Marketing Is A Must In 2020 was last modified: November 5th, 2020 by Martina Pranjic
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