Experience stimulates action. Consumers don’t take useful actions until they have been made to touch, smell, or feel some stimuli that resonate with their conscious and unconscious desires. The focal point of engagement, in every marketing campaign, is therefore the consumers’ heart.
Experiential marketing is a technique that was carved out of the strategic activities that have a bearing on all the important senses of consumers. Consumers have sensory touch-points. The touch-points are sight, hearing, and touch organs. Psychologically these organs are the drivers of all human emotions. What consumers see, smell and hear determine how they feel. By creatively crafting an exciting view and delivering captivating tone under a suitable ambience, it is possible to seduce consumers to take appropriate purchasing actions.
Precisely leaving an impression on targeted consumers is the core of experiential marketing. Walt Disney, the founder of the popular the $69.57 billion a-year Walt Disney Company, said ‘People spend where they feel good’. The whole park, movies, video streaming and franchising subsidiaries of the American company are structured around this major insight – making people ‘feel good’.
This goes without saying that a business is as valuable as the degree of the relevant sensory engagements it undertakes in a bid to inspire positive emotion that resonates with its customers desire to feel cared for and dignified.
According to award-winning global brand agency, Sense, experiential marketing is not restricted to a few well-known marketing ideas. It said, “It’s walking into an Apple Store that is designed to feel like a ‘town square’. It’s Patagonia telling you not to buy their jacket to help tackle the issue of consumerism. It’s Purina creating interactive billboards that scan canine urine diseases. It’s the Nike X Pigalle techni-color basketball court which brightens up an otherwise grey street. It’s Google’s AR experience which tells stories of the Stonewall Riots”.
More, experiential marketing aims to bring brands to life by directly interacting with targeted audience through the execution of immersive activities. Forbes connects with the desire to be wealthy among its global audience by consistently evaluating and spotlighting the fortune of famous people in different countries. Virgin Atlantic treats its flyers like royals. The organisers of the Super Bowl create a fusion of music and football to immerse the global audience in one of the best sportainment showpiece.
Ritz Calton collects data of customers and syncs such data across all its hotel chain in such a way that whichever treats each customer values [food, drinks, and types of rooms] would be awaiting them on arrival next time. The Silverbird Group honours the best men and women in the political and economic class yearly. It’s a joy to listen to the voice at the other end when calling to lay product complaints via the Customer Service line of some telecom services providers.
Every point of contact such as email, social media, retail stores, Customer Care portals, company offices and product events provide an opportunity for brands to leave a lasting impression on consumers. These point-of-contacts cannot be left to chance.
Here are some critical points to consider when crafting an experiential marketing campaign:
- Understand the aspiration of your target customers – To truly succeed with your current and prospective consumers try to understand their current status and what they aspire to. This should provide a solid foundation for solid engagement in a way that appeals to the consumers.
- Add colour to someone’s day – Messages of hope and humour coming from brands at a period of gloom can be a massive soul lifting tool that addresses the consumer present mood.
- Be human – Products and services are meant to be used but how the producers make the users feel in the end goes a long way to serve as a differentiating factor.
- Seek to meet your customers face-to-face – Distance leaves a void. By creating an opportunity to interact face-to-face via virtual events, conferences, and product sampling events, your business would be laying a base for lasting brand-consumer relationship.
- Make everything you serve beautiful, excellent, comforting – Beautiful sights and enchanting frangrances attract. Music cools the soul. Ensure products and the atmosphere surrounding consumption are well planned to make the customers feel good.