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Marketing is a complex game, that no one has completely figured out. Often, it seems like the trends keep changing on a monthly basis, and it’s hard for anyone to keep up with what people want. Therefore, it’s sometimes better to experiment with your marketing to attract customers, as opposed to taking a more familiar route. If you’re eager to bring in more leads in a fast and fun way, then take a look at what experiential marketing can do for your company.
What is It?
Essentially, experiential marketing is a way of connecting with your potential customers directly. We’re not talking about phone calls or emails then, of course. This is all 1-on-1, face to face marketing. Something that can happen inside a local community, maybe at a store or plaza, where people can participate on their own time.
But, how does it work? You’re obviously not trying to sit at a booth and sell girl-scout cookies all day, right? So what exactly are some of these experiential marketing techniques? We’ll name some examples, and we’re sure you’ll quickly remember others you’ve seen before.
1. A Truck or Mobile Car– Sometimes, companies use this approach to take their marketing on the road. Maybe you’ve seen it at a festival when a restaurant sells some smaller samples of their menu items to festival-goers. Maybe it’s a pet shop bringing some of their cutest animals to different locations. Let’s be honest. Have you ever seen a pet-mobile in a parking lot and walked away without at least taking a peek inside? Of course not. It’s genius and it can work for your company, too.
2. Handing Out Free Samples at Events- There’s a community carnival going on, or a grand opening of a big store. Get your company involved as soon as you can. There will be tons of people coming in and out from where you’re at. Every time someone walks by, hand out free samples of your product, a brochure, or if you can manage it, ask if people have a few minutes to discuss what you’re offering.
3. A Fun Contest- If you can find a way to get a crowd of people around you, then you’ll keep attracting people throughout the entire day. How do you do this? Have a fun game going on, like horseshoes, “guess how many in the jar,” or a spinning wheel with prizes. Have people sign up in order to play.
Getting involved in this type of way isn’t quite as easy as it seems. You’ll have to make the right connections, talk to the right people, get permissions, and even work with other companies to gain mutual exposure. But, we’re sure all the hard work will pay off!
Digital Experiential Marketing
While experiential marketing typically occurs in person, there’s no reason it can’t happen digitally. Of course, trying it this way might be a bit more challenging. One way to do this is by creating some kind of online game that people can play at home in order to win prizes, or having a survey or poll that grants some kind of reward for completing. It might take more time to create, but it’s no doubt a wonderful way to lock in those leads.
Challenges and Solutions
Experiential marketing doesn’t come without its challenges. A big one is that people nowadays are much less comfortable with meeting people face to face. In some cases, it might mean you have to hire a team that specializes in these kinds of interactions specifically.
The other thing is that experiential marketing doesn’t need to be so set in stone. If the ideas we gave you don’t quite work for your company’s style, then you can go about it in a way that suits you. That’s the whole point of this type of strategy after all. No matter how you approach it, the overall goal is to engage with people directly.
Lastly, one of the most important things of all is knowing your audience. If you plan on getting in at a street fair meant for children and young families, but you’re selling tequila shots to promote your online Mexican ingredients shop, then you’re probably not in the right place. Consider this before finalizing your involvement. And, before you get discouraged or you reach a wall in your planning, remember that at the end of the day, consumers appreciate these kinds of interactions. It’s a way to bring in leads by just being your natural, friendly self.
Are you ready to try experiential marketing and see if it’s actually creating results? Then request a demo with Mission Suite to see how we can help you.