We’re all familiar with the major stunts that brands have pulled off. Whether it’s a guy free-falling from the edge of the atmosphere, a horror scene in a coffee shop, or an elevator with a false floor, the one thing all of these stunts have in common is that they leave a lasting impression on anyone who experiences or sees them. These public stunts, also called brand activations or experiential marketing, can result in a huge bump in your brand awareness growth.
The good news is that you can create an amazing experience at any budget.
Here are 6 things to consider when you are building experiential marketing into your overall marketing strategy:
- Clearly define your objectives: This goes for any strategy you build, however, it’s very easy to get carried away when you are doing experiential marketing. When any new idea comes up, you always have to ask yourself how it relates to your strategic objectives and if it helps you reach your overall business goals. If the answer is no, then the idea should be off the table.
- Budget: This should come up whenever you discuss strategy. Most small businesses are limited when it comes to budget, but that doesn’t mean your strategy has to have a small impact. It just means you have to plan carefully within your budget.
- Concept: This is the thematic idea that will tie everything together. Your concept should represent your brand and its values. This is the overall story that you will pitch to media, and it will shape the activities that happen on the day of the activation.
- Connection: Remember that you are creating an experience, so you should tap into all of the senses and emotions that will resonate with your audience. The idea is that when people remember the experience, they immediately associate it with your brand. The first step is making the experience memorable. They need to feel a connection with your brand, so any activities you do should make sense for your brand.
- Cross-channel integration: Utilize all of the resources you have available. This means integrating social media, media relations, influencer relations, and content creation into your planning. The event shouldn’t just live in one place. Why not stream it live or have attendees upload photos to Instagram?
- Continuity: What happens beyond the day of the activation? Many brands forget that it takes more than one event to put your brand on the map. You might generate a lot of social media buzz and maybe some media coverage, but what next? You have to keep thinking of ways to keep your story fresh and encourage people to keep talking about you.
Candace Huntly is the Founder and Principal at SongBird Marketing Communications, an award-winning agency working to take organizational and individual brands to the next level. With a passion for all things related to creativity and strategy, she specializes in business intelligence, marketing & branding, content strategy & development, media & influencer relations, and social media. Basically, if you need to put your brand, product, or cause in the public eye, she will find a way to do it, while making the approach unique to you.
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