Traditional brand marketing consisted of communication channels such as advertising, mail, and sales promotions. Over the years marketing efforts have evolved to meet the demands of consumers. In recent years, brands have realised that in order to build meaningful connections with their customers, they need to go further than ‘one-way’ traditional marketing efforts.
This meant finding ways in which brands could interact with their target audience, and then the audience or customers could interact back with the brand. It was from this ‘two-way’ marketing channel, that experiential marketing and experiential events were born.
An experiential marketing event is an opportunity for brands to come to life and engage with their customers. Consumers are given a chance to get to know a brand personally, through an experience-based event or marketing effort. Experiential marketing is not new; however, experiential marketing is expected to shake things up in the events industry in 2020. Here are 3 experiential marketing trends to watch this year:
Multisensory branding can be a way to connect to your target customers on an emotional level, rather than overloading them with mass marketing efforts. Some of the most engaging events and experiential marketing efforts are the ones interacting with all five human senses. Sensory immersion works to create an impact on the brain of an individual and leave a powerful memory associated with the brand or event. According to events company Polite, sensory experiential experiences at events rely on highly-trained event staff who can implement the experience in accordance with the directions given by the client.
For example, take a second to think about a batch of cookies coming straight out of the oven. Does your mouth automatically begin to salivate? You’ve just experienced the power of multisensory marketing. Companies will play around with baking times to suit work hours to lure in the most pedestrians – this is no accident; it’s sensory marketing.
The brain reacts to the senses being tapped by creating powerful memories associated with the reactions. In the case of experiential marketing or experience events, multisensory experiences provide brands with an opportunity to engage attendees and customers and build a meaningful connection.
2020 is the year of sustainability and advocacy for eco-friendly behavioural change. More people are practising sustainable consumerism and are holding brands accountable for sustainable actions. The events industry is traditionally a relatively wasteful industry and attendees are now expecting more from event organisers.
Sustainable events are going to be one of the most talked-about experiential marketing trends in 2020. Brands are realising that to win over key consumers, they need to implement event experiences that make sustainability and eco-friendly options a priority. Examples of sustainable experiential efforts include zero-waste events, using recyclable materials, educating attendees on sustainability, and integrating vegan and vegetarian menus.
Experiential marketing is all about fully engaging the consumer or event attendee and creating a two-way marketing channel between the customer and the brand. One marketing trend that we’re expecting to see more of this year, is extended or stayable experiences.
Guests are treated like VIP members and are invited to spend an overnight experience with the brand. This includes accommodation, food, and sometimes even transportation. Extended experiences offer an opportunity to build even deeper connections between the brand and the attending. The attendees are provided with shareable, immersive, and memorable personalised experiences tied to the brand.
More big brands are offering stayable experiences to their most loyal and important customers. These experiences are fully engaging and allow for an impactful emotional connection between the customer and the company. We’re expecting to see more types of these experiences over the coming year.