In recent years, we’ve come to understand the importance of a “360” approach and packaging more components to the equation with an informed and data-led action plan. The efficiency that comes with having the entire team under one roof also allows smaller shops to tell cohesive stories and win notable accounts.
The Digital Component
While a variety of tools and technologies fall under the umbrella of all things “digital,” the fact is: a digital component can not only drive attendance to your experience but also extend its impact after the fact online. It’s a necessary component to achieve sales and brand-building goals.
Because digital packs a powerful punch, it provides you the opportunity to really engage people beyond just the in-the-moment experience you’ve created.
Before your event, establish your hashtag and promote the event via social media, digital advertising, your blog, and email.
During, share what’s happening at the event on your social media profiles and encourage others to do the same. You might even set up a live feed of the event to really engage those who can’t attend or a social media wall where people can see their tweets and posts in real time.
Garnier, a hair care brand, knew that it needed to capture its Millennial audience in an innovative way, so the brand packed up its gear and headed to music festivals. Offering hair washing and styling stations, the brand got its product into the hands of festival-goers. Additionally, attendees were encouraged to ‘Rock Their Style’ through social media integrations and photo opps.
After the event, keep posting photos and highlights. This extends the reach of your event and ensures that the next one is even more successful.
How Experiential Can Support Digital
The average American spends about three hours a day on his or her phone. They built an entire universe in the palm of their hand, and sometimes it’s hard to pull them away from it. Brands have learned how to engage with this consumer through digital channels, but the real beauty comes when you can do not only that but also engage their IRL.
Imagine a customer who has loved your brand digitally for years. They get your emails, follow your Instagram feed, and shop online. When you send them a special invite to an exclusive in-store event, their delighted. They feel like you value them as a customer and will be excited to share the experience with their social channel online.
At the South By Southwest (SXSW) festival in Austin, AMC brought a restaurant from the television show Breaking Bad to life to promote a spinoff show, Better Call Saul. Attendees could visit Los Pollos Hermanos, order food, and meet stars of the show. Connecting the dots between the digital and physical experiences, these attendees posted photos and shared the experience online.
Engaging with your audience and encouraging them to share the experience is the best way to foster a long-term relationship with your customer base.
It’s All in the Data
One of the real boons of this digital era is the sheer amount of data that marketers can glean from campaigns. While you may know from your in-person event that X people attended or that you gave away Y goodie bags, the data generated from the online portion is gold.
You can understand how many tickets you sold to an event through a given online channel and do more marketing on the most successful channels. You can also measure the social media reach of your event based on likes, clicks, and shares.
This data helps you personalize future experiences. When you dig into the data to understand how people reacted to your event, you can deliver more customized offerings in the future.
A Bigger Impact
Every channel you use to reach your audience, be it radio, print, digital, PR, email, mobile, now has less impact when used individually. But when combined together, now, that’s when the magic happens.
While experiential marketing allows your audience to truly experience what you’re selling—especially because they get to touch, feel, smell, or taste your product or service—a 360 marketing approach can amplify a brands resonance and create an even bigger impact.