Experiential marketing has been around for decades, but its popularity has grown exponentially over the last few years. Despite this growth, some brands are still unsure of whether or not to incorporate it into their marketing strategies. It can be nerve wracking to try a new marketing idea—not to mention difficult to convince senior level management to get on board. If you’re still debating whether or not to budget for experiential marketing this year, here are the surprising statistics you need to see:

Acquiring New Customers With Experiential Marketing

Many marketers question whether an experiential marketing event is an effective way to acquire new customers. Thanks to the most recent EventTrack survey, marketers no longer have to question this tactic’s effectiveness. The survey revealed that nearly three-quarters of event attendees leave the event with a more favorable view of the brand. Furthermore, 70% of attendees turn into regular customers after having a memorable experience at a branded event. The survey also revealed that 98% of people who attend these events feel more inclined to purchase the brand’s products after the event. This means even though 30% of attendees are not converted into regular customers, a portion of these attendees could still be making a one-time purchase.

How can you convince guests to purchase your products? Eighty percent of consumers who were surveyed by EventTrack admit that watching a live product demonstration or getting a free sample of a product often impact their purchase decisions.

Building Buzz on Social Media

Brands often encourage their guests to take photos or videos while at the event that they can share with their followers. By encouraging guests to do this, brands can reach even more people without lifting a finger. According to the results of this survey, this strategy seems to be working. A little over one-third of all consumers say they would probably post something on their social media pages if they were to attend a branded event. One-third of consumers surveyed said that their posts would probably contain photos and videos that were taken at the event.

How can brands encourage their guests to create and share content with their followers? Most marketers believe exclusive experiences generate the most social shares in addition to contests and photo walls.

More Brands Are Committing to Experiential Marketing

Brands that are not ready to host experiential marketing events may be left behind since the majority of their competitors are probably heavily investing in this tactic. The survey reveals that nearly 80% of brands are planning on executing a greater number of experiential marketing events in 2018 than ever before. This means hosting experiential marketing events may be necessary in order to stay competitive in your industry.

Over three-quarter of marketers surveyed said their experiential marketing events are integrated with other marketing tactics. For example, a brand that is hosting an experiential marketing event may rely on social media to promote the event. In fact, the survey showed that only 11% of brands are not using social media to complement their experiential marketing efforts. If you plan on incorporating social media into your event, it’s important to note that consumers said they prefer Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Face-to-Face Interaction is Important to Consumers

Today’s consumers want to be able to interact directly with brands, and the results of another industry survey prove this to be true. The Center for Exhibition Industry Research surveyed event attendees and found that nearly half of them believe face-to-face interactions between consumers and brands is more important today than it was several years ago. Hosting an experiential marketing event allows brands to make this type of interaction possible.

Experiential vs. Digital vs. Traditional Marketing

Marketers are often hesitant to allocate funds to experiential marketing if it means cutting back in other areas such as digital or traditional marketing. But, the results of this survey show that marketers should not be so afraid of this change. Sixty-five percent of consumers surveyed said attending a live event helps them get a better understanding of a product or service. Furthermore, the results reveal that consumers are able to learn more about a product or service at a live event than they are by being exposed to digital or traditional marketing efforts. This indicates that the best way to introduce consumers to a product or service may be at a live event as opposed to other marketing channels.

Word of Mouth Marketing

People who attend experiential marketing events aren’t just sharing their experiences on social media. Many attendees are also discussing their experience at the event and their interactions with the brand with their close friends and family members. This means brands can amplify their reach simply by making sure their guests have a great time at the event. Even if these guests aren’t sharing photos and videos on social media, they could be discussing your brand offline with other potential customers.

Technology Plays an Important Role

Marketers should make an effort to incorporate technology into their events in some way. According to the survey, using technology during the event can increase attendance, make the event more successful, and lower the costs of hosting it by between 20-30%. Brands don’t need to break the bank on using cutting-edge technology in order to reap these rewards. For example, live streaming the event on Facebook is a great way to create more buzz and it’s completely free to use.

Now that you know the facts, it’s time to start planning your first—or next—experiential marketing event. Let the experiential marketing professionals at Factory 360 help every step of the way. Contact us today to find out how we can help you exceed your marketing goals!

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