Why Companies Are Using Experiential Marketing More Than Ever

When an experiential marketing campaign goes well, 100% of consumers share information with friends, 98% share on their social media channels, and 91% report having stronger, positive feelings about a brand after engaging with them. When you host live events or another experiential marketing campaign, there’s a 74% chance that consumers who attend will buy your product or service. These are the leading reasons why more companies are using experiential marketing than ever before.

During the pandemic, companies turned their eyes to online marketing events. Those proved just as successful, if not more so, as people who don’t like going out into large crowds could attend an experiential marketing event. The reach with experiential marketing is fantastic.

What Types of Experiential Marketing Events Work Best?

Conferences, trade shows, and webinars are the three most popular types of events hosted by brands. Is that the right match for consumers? Not necessarily. Consumers say they learn the most about a brand on a company’s website, during experiential marketing events, or by displays in retailers. These are things to keep in mind as you plan your marketing event.

No matter what type of event you plan, you need to be creative when planning your event. Think of what consumers would love to experience and create a website that provides any additional information that they need. Here are some of the most successful experiential marketing campaigns of late.

Pizza Hut and Twitch

Twitch is a video game streaming platform. It draws a lot of fans to live-stream gaming events. Pizza Hut tapped into the popularity of Twist with 2020’s Friday Night Bites series, attracting over one million viewers each Friday night.

Due to its popularity, Pizza Hut brought back Friday Night Bites in June 2021. Each Friday night, celebrity gamers join the public in pizza and game sessions. Attendees enjoyed pizza-themed games and challenges while watching celebrities like T-Pain play video games online.

The popularity led to the announcement that the series will return in 2022. It also led to a dedicated Pizza Hut Gaming channel on Twitter that awarded free pizzas to the first 100 followers.

Simmons and TikTok

Simmons mattresses have been around for over a century. The pandemic kept people from attending live events, so through the #snoozzzapalooza campaign, Simmons invited people to do a “stage dive” in their home on their bed and share the videos on TikTok.

With more than six billion views and more than a million shared videos, the campaign was a great success. Simmons’ website traffic increased by 104% with this marketing campaign. It also helped the century-old company reach a younger market.

Travis Scott and Fortnight

When the pandemic ended any changes of live concerts, the game developers behind Fortnite teamed up with rapper Travis Scott to create an experience both players and music fans would find valuable. To celebrate the release of his new song, Astronomical was turned into a live online event for Fortnite players. Anyone could download the free online game through Epic Games and catch Scott’s game icon performing the song. Players who attended received free gifts within the game.

The 15-minute concert performance drew almost 30 million players. It ended up gaining Scott more money and viewers than he would have gotten with an average concert performance.

What Do Consumers Want From an Experiential Marketing Campaign?

Attendee-only discounts are the most effective way to convince consumers to buy your product when attending your marketing event. Food and beverages, live entertainment, personalized experiences while shopping, and product demonstrations are other leading ways to reach consumers.

Keep these things in mind about experiential marketing. Around 33% of consumers will pay to attend a marketing event. Approximately 8.5 out of 10 consumers purchased a brand’s products after experiencing it. Half of the consumers say a trial of some form increases the likelihood of buying a product.

What are the best types of marketing strategies to employ in your goals? You have many options, including:

  • Events/Virtual Events – Both live events and virtual events are popular experiential marketing techniques. People join your brand in a live event, such as a trade show or concert, or virtually by live-streaming a video.
  • Guerrilla Marketing – You could use an unconventional method to get consumers to interact with your brand. For example, Volkswagen got consumers to “Step Into the Fast Lane” by setting up a slide that people could take instead of using the stairs in a German subway station.
  • Installations – Installations involve placing unexpected works of art in public areas to draw attention. An example of this would be make-up company Rimmel, who placed a life-size bottle of spilled nail polish on a London sidewalk.
  • Mobile Tours – Sometimes, companies find it best to bring their products to the consumers. One of the best examples of a mobile tour would be the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile that travels the U.S. on publicity tours.
  • Pop-Ups – Pop-ups are limited-time marketing displays that come and go. Birds Eye created a pop-up restaurant in London where people could avoid paying for their meal by taking a picture of whatever they ordered and sharing it on Instagram.
  • PR Stunts – PR stunts always catch attention in significant, often shocking, ways. Canada’s WestJet pulled off a PR stunt in 2013 that blew people away. Children were invited to share their Christmas wishes with a virtual Santa. After the flight left, staff in the arrival airport got busy securing one of the toys on the child’s list. As the child got off the plane, they received the gift they’d told Santa they wanted. The publicity from this campaign was tremendous.
  • Sampling – Free samples are always a hit. Perhaps one of the best known is all the free sample carts in Costco where workers give out food or trial sizes of products.

How do you plan a successful marketing campaign? Not every company has the expertise available without hiring new staff. If you’re worried about being able to afford an entire marketing team, there’s a better way. Talk to Factory 360 about your goals.

We’ve developed marketing campaigns for dozens of clients. Santa Margherita’s Follow the Vine is one of our award-winning marketing campaigns. This experiential marketing campaign started with a grapevine maze filled with cocktail and food pairings. Once attendees reached the end of the max, they experienced the brand’s story, followed by tastings of four of the brand’s wines. More than 6,100 people attended the event, and close to 24,000 wine samples were given out. It brought close to 25,000 people to the website.

The Follow the Vine campaign was an EX Awards Silver winner for Best Sampling Campaign. It also won Gold for Best Multi-Market Event (Consumer). The campaign also won Silver at the Experience Design & Technology for Best Use of A/V and Bronze for Best Outdoor Environment. When you partner with Factory 360, you gain a team of experts ready to bring your vision to life.

Factory 360 is happy to discuss your marketing campaign goals and work with you to develop a marketing plan that fits your budget and does what you need it to do. We’re experienced in all kinds of experiential marketing styles, whether you want to host a virtual event or a safe pop-up in the middle of the city. Call us to talk about your goals and budget.