September 17, 2015
Experiential marketers pride themselves in the growing industry. With the help of technology, a concept that has been around for many years is now starting to take off. According EventTrack, a study conducted by The Event Marketing Institute and Mosaic, 79% of brands surveyed plan to execute more experiential programs in 2015 versus 2014.
On top of that, AdvertisingAge’s most recent review of global agencies showed that traditional categories of media, advertising, and PR grew 0%, 1.8%, and 2.4% respectively, while experiential and digital marketing agencies grew 4% and 13%, respectively. The fact that experiential marketing is growing at twice the rate over other types of traditional marketing should not, however, be based solely on the fact that technology is experiencing an exponential growth curve.
The hard work that experiential marketers put in every day should be given its due credit. The evolution of an idea from the drawing board during a brainstorm to the execution of a virtually flawless event takes dedication, precise planning, teamwork, and time.
PHASE ONE: BRIEF
The first step in planning an event is having an event to plan. This may seem obvious, but the client brief can be easily misinterpreted, so it’s important that the experiential agency can fully understand the brand’s brief and hit the right targets.
PHASE TWO: RESEARCH
In order to understand the client’s brief and the market(s) that they are activating in, experiential marketers need to do their research. They should research their client’s values in order to provide their consumers with truth, their client’s history so they can deliver something relevant, and the history of experiential marketing as seen in this specific client’s market so they can develop something original. Research is also an important component that ensures that events or activities going on during an event will not require any permits.
PHASE THREE: BRAINSTORM
The brainstorm is one of the most underrated parts of the process a campaign goes through. Ideas are born and edited in this phase. Teamwork comes to play and everyone involved in the campaign shares their research findings and their initial ideas. Each idea is then added onto and improved upon by the rest of the team in a process that thrives on creativity and strategy.
PHASE FOUR: PROPOSAL
Experiential marketers will come out of brainstorming sessions with anywhere between three and five solid concept ideas that they would like to propose to their client. This means that experiential marketers need to present copy and visuals for each concept in order to paint a picture in the clients mind of how the concepts can come to life. This proposal is used as a tool to show clients the overall atmosphere that the event is planned to have.
PHASE FIVE: CLIENT COMMUNICATION
After presenting the proposal the marketers have created, the client will give their feedback. This is the client’s opportunity to choose a concept, say that they want a certain concept altered or ask any questions before they make a decision. Once the client is happy with a direction, experiential marketers flesh out the concept to bring the whole experience to life.
PHASE SIX: ACQUIRING VENUE AND EQUIPMENT
The agency then finds an appropriate venue with prime target demographic traffic. It starts to place the event in context and analyzes if the venue would work. The agency will then call the venue and ask for a quote. After receiving the quote, the agency will put together a venue proposition for the client outlining the benefits of this venue, how it relates to the event, a proposed date, and audience. Once the venue is approved, experiential marketers then search for the equipment necessary to carry out the activities going on at the event.
PHASE SEVEN: HIRING BRAND AMBASSADORS
Once the event is solidified, the search for finding the most qualified brand ambassadors begins. Some agencies choose to outsource this, but Factory360 does all of the staffing in-house. After asking for brand ambassadors to submit their resumes, the marketers then invite the top candidates for phone interviews. If they still seem like a good candidate, they will be invited back for an in person interview.
PHASE EIGHT: TRAINING BRAND AMBASSADORS
At Factory360, once brand ambassadors are selected, they are required to attend training. Usually, training is held at the office and is informative of certain procedures that ambassadors should follow.
PHASE NINE: OVERSEEING AND MANAGING THE EVENT
The process still isn’t over. Once the event starts, experiential marketers have to be on sight in order to oversee the brand ambassadors. They have to manage the event and be able to troubleshoot any issues that may arise with technology, consumers, etc.
PHASE TEN: EVENT RECAP AND RESULTS REPORT
After the event, experiential marketers will then show their clients the results from the event. These reports will usually include overall exposure, social media impressions, how many consumers downloaded an app or were active on their client’s platform, key insights from consumers, and things that can be improved upon for the next time an event like this takes place again.