Experiences, they last longer than things, but do they mean more than ads?
Arecent retail trend shows consumers are favouring experiences over things as they can be shared more than a product and unlike the latest iphone, won’t degrade. While this is bad news for brands, can consumers be reeled back in with a dose of their own medicine?
Experiential marketing is the new kid on the advertising block, and has been praised for creating brand engagement with consumers that traditional platforms cannot achieve and scored highly in the Media Momentum Index for its buoyancy.
Samsung used the platform to launch its GS7 phone, a strategy marketing director Mike Cornwell says was part of telling the story about how the GS7 is more than just a phone.
To demonstrate the GS7’S 360 camera and Samsung’s virtual reality headsets, Samsung launched an activation at the Auckland City Limits music festival.
Cornwell says Samsung did research into the passion points of the New Zealand consumers and found music to be one of those.
Samsung gave festival goers the chance to get closer to the band via a virtual reality headset and 360 degree cameras on stage, an activation Cornwell says reached a few thousand people. While this number does not compare to the reach of a campaign on other platforms, particularly those that spread nationwide, Cornwell says it’s made up for in other ways. “The challenge of experiential marketing is it’s quite expensive on a one-to-one basis but it’s a really good way to build a really strong product shopping centre and into the car park to come and have a look at what was going on and actually talking to the guys about what was going on.”
While allowing a brand to get face-to-face with consumers is a benefit of experiential marketing, its success depends on it providing measurability to prove effectiveness. According to its low Media Momentum Index score, the platform has yet to find a form of measurement that delivers easy to see results and accurate data.
In 2012, the CAANZ PRESCOM committee and Dr Martin Waiguny’s team at AUT began an academic research study into measuring the effectiveness of experiential marketing campaigns. While the study concludes in 2017, the initial findings showed 75-80 percent of the respondents reported they had shared or talked about the activation and the brand on social media.
It also found between 75 and 80 percent of respondents reported using the product in the month following a brand activation.
As research continues to provide insight into experiential’s possibilities, the question on marketers’ minds should be: should brands engage with more people in a less meaningful way, or with less people in a more meaningful way?