Event Marketing

Boosting B2B Events Through Experiential Marketing

Eventually Learning Team

“Marketing is no longer about the stuff you make, but about the stories you tell.” –Seth Godin

Event organizers are always on the lookout for newer, better and more purposeful ways of engaging their event audiences. Experiential marketing brings precisely that to the event strategy table – it livens up the brand and offers genuinely engaging experiences for attendees, because of which organizers stand to rope in more conversions!

What Is Experiential Marketing?

If experiential marketing can be encapsulated in three keywords, it would be - innovational, catchy and interactive. Often also called as “engagement marketing” or “participation marketing,” this is a marketing strategy that, conceptually and practically, offers the audience to participate and interact with a brand or a business. The experiential marketing elements are highly hands-on and collective in nature, that assist in truly portraying your brand and what it stands for.

Experiential marketing promotes live, on-ground participations and more often than not, it is very event-centric. It is focused on creating interactions that attendees have with your brand.

What is the role of an Experiential Marketer?

The role of experiential marketers is to curate and successfully execute experiential B2B event strategies that help organizers create more immersive attendee experiences.
Some of the critical aspects of marketing that experiential marketers influence are:
  • Formulate experiential marketing campaigns to increase brand visibility and awareness
  • Liaison with various event management teams like PR, design, brand and sale
  • Supervise the event’s logistics team for seamless operations
  • Craft live campaigns to make sure the brands at your event successfully connect with relevant attendees
  • Identify, analyze and document the performance of the experiential marketing campaign
  • Be present at the event, overseeing and ensuring event operations and sales support

What Are the Key Benefits of Experiential Marketing?

Utilizing an experiential B2B marketing strategy at your event brings several unique advantages that are absent in traditional advertisements. Let us look at some of them:
  • Fosters Brand Loyalty: By creating immersive experiences through experiential marketing, attendees are emotionally attached to the brand and associate with it positively leading to higher conversions.
  • Aids in Lead Generation: It helps collect crucial attendee data, which helps organizers strategize their marketing efforts.
  • Brand Awareness: Experiential marketing is a very effective pathway for Brand activation. It puts your brand right in the limelight! 
  • Product Trial: Only Experiential marketing offers attendees to see, touch, and often use the product for a trial.
  • Online Engagement: It provides attendees a reason to share experiences and initiate conversations around the event across social media.

What Are Some Real-Time Experiential Marketing Campaign Examples Used by Top Brands?

Jet Blue Staging the Ultimate Ice Breaker

Getting that big sunny break right between a bone-chilling winter is everyone’s dream! Considering this, JetBlue figured out a fun and unique way of promoting their new direct flights from New York to Palm Springs. To do this, they used a 6-foot by 6-foot icebox and placed several summer accessories and merchandise inside it. Then, they asked their customers to chip through the ice and whatever was within that ice was up for grabs. The prizes on offer were beach clothing, hats, and, more importantly, free tickets to Palm Springs!

Coca-Cola: FIFA World Cup VR Experience

During the FIFA World Cup, Coca Cola organized a spectacular VR Experience set-up at a train station in Zurich. Here, people could stand in front of the VR screen and simultaneously interact, play and engage with some of the most iconic footballers participating in the tournament.

House of Vans by Vans!

Vans decided to opt for experiential marketing techniques in major cities like Chicago and NYC by hosting House of Vans pop-up locations at major skateparks. This allowed the skate holder community to gather, vibe on good music and connect. Subsequently, Vans used these pop-ups to amplify their product publicity efforts too by promoting their new shoe line which honored David Bowie. By this, Vans acknowledged the interests of its audience which was skateboarding and leveraged it to their advantage by curating an event around it to engage with them.

Google Cupcake Ambush ft. Zappos

To promote their new photo app, Google set the experiential marketing standard. Google placed a cupcake truck in Austin, Texas. The unique bit here was that if people wanted to have cupcakes, the only accepted currency was a photo from Google’s new app. It doesn’t just end there. Zappos, saw this experiential marketing event as an excellent opportunity for co-branding and “ambushed” it. They had a counter set up right next to the cupcake truck and offered free goodies only on one condition – people needed to have had a cupcake! Experiential marketing can be leveraged to enter co-branding partnerships through strategically thought after product or service exchange as done by Google and Zappos.

Wrapping Up

Creating unique and memorable brand experiences is all about taking calculated risks, thinking unconventionally and quite often, the ability to work together with other event planning stakeholders on the same ideas. The above examples will help inspire organizers in figuring out ingenious ways to keep their B2B event audience in the conversation when it comes to their brand.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you develop an experiential marketing strategy?

Some key pointers in developing an effective experiential marketing strategy are as follows:
  • Identify your target audience.
  • Formulate and communicate a clear message
  • Design a value-added campaign
  • Utilize augmented reality.
  • Create an immersive experiential campaign
  • Amplify your campaign across multiple channels

What is experiential branding?

Experiential branding is an approach to the overall branding and positioning of companies and their products and services that focus on audience-centric experiences. Experiential branding can assist in differentiating a brand from its competitors. 

How does experiential marketing differ from traditional marketing?

Unlike traditional marketing, which is inherently impersonal, experiential marketing can communicate and interact with consumers in either a one-to-one, one-to-few, or one-to-many methods. This enables the brand to tailor their marketing efforts to the correct audience every time.

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