Should Your Business Try Experiential Marketing? | Fora Financial Blog
Should Your Business Try Experiential Marketing?
February 25, 2019

Should Your Business Try Experiential Marketing?

50 years ago, companies could put ads on TV and consumers would purchase their products at first glance. Today, we live in an experience economy where customers are looking to not only use a brand but create a connection with it. Simply seeing the product on a commercial isn’t good enough, and with the rise of DVR and Netflix, consumers can fast forward though ads and miss your product completely. If you’re looking to take your marketing to the next level, experiential marketing could be right for your business.

In this post, we’ll explain how experiential marketing works and show you examples of companies who are doing it right.

What is Experiential Marketing?

Experiential marketing, also known as engagement marketing, is the practice of immersing consumers in fun and engaging activities with your brand. The use of live events in marketing is on the rise, and 80 percent of marketers believe live events are vital to their company’s success.

Experiential marketing is often used by big businesses who have large budgets, but small businesses can have success as well. Small business can use experiential marketing to create better brand awareness and stand out from the larger brands.

Why Experiential Marketing is Important?

In today’s business landscape, the competition is steeper than ever, and brands must create emotional connections with consumers to generate loyalty and keep them from switching to competitors. Not only does it allow consumers to connect with the brand, but it shows what the brand stands for and can increase people’s opinion of the brand.

In fact, the Event Marketing Institute found that after attending an experiential marketing event, 74 percent of consumers have a better opinion about a brand. Every small business can benefit from greater brand awareness and experiential marketing is a great way to obtain that.

Examples of Experiential Marketing

It’s beneficial to see how other brands are successfully hosting experiential marketing events, so you can learn from their successes and failures. Below are three examples of companies that are engaging consumers effectively through experiential marketing.

1. Lean Cuisine: #WeighThis

Many brands tell women to conform to a certain image, but Lean Cuisine decided to do the opposite. They launched a social media campaign called “WeighThis,” where instead of weighing their bodies, women weighed their accomplishments. To do this, Lean Cuisine setup a booth at Grand Central Station in New York City and asked women “how they wanted to be weighed.” Those achievements were written on scales and hung on a wall. To promote the experience, they made a video about it and it’s been viewed more than 123,000 times.

2. Google Impact Challenge: Bay Area

Google understands the importance of giving back to their community. According to a Unilever study, 33 percent of people want to buy from brands who are doing social good. Instead of simply giving money to worthy organizations, Google turned it into a contest and let the public decide who would win the biggest prizes.

The company invited local nonprofits to submit proposals and the contests’ board of advisors picked 25 organizations who would receive a total of $5.5 million in funding. Consumers could vote for their favorite organizations, with the top six organizations winning the most money. By involving the community, Google turned their giving into experiential marketing by creating consumer involvement.

3. Sensodyne’s Great Sensitivity Test 

Sensodyne partnered with UK marketing agency Hotcow to let consumers experience their new toothpaste. The goal was to educate consumers on ways to treat sensitive teeth and still enjoy the foods they love. They had games, a world record competition, and pictures with a giant molar. Additionally, 6,480 Sensodyne Complete Protection toothpaste samples were distributed, and they performed 200 dental sensitivity checks on consumers. This was an excellent way to take an everyday product like toothpaste and make it exciting.

Is Experiential Marketing Right for Your Business?

If your budget is a concern, small business owners can start with experiential marketing in their community and move to larger events as your brand grows. For example, you could give grants to local organizations, hand out free samples in the local park, or host a community event where consumers can experience your brand. If you’re positively engaging consumers, you can host a successful event and dip your foot in experiential marketing.

Fora Financial

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Fora Financial is a working capital provider to small business owners nationwide. In addition, the Fora Financial team provides educational information to the small business community through their blog, which covers topics such as business financing, marketing, technology, and much more. If you’d like to see a topic covered on the Fora Financial blog, or want to submit a guest post, please email us at [email protected].