You march straight into your boss’s office, slam down your carefully crafted, annotated dossier. You look her square in the eye and with a low, authoritative (but not aggressive) voice say, “Experiential marketing can not only elevate our brand amongst the din of our competition—get us on the map—but it can also improve company morale from top to bottom. Now, sit back in your faux Armani and listen. I’ve got a few things I need to say …”
Then, with a strange jerk, you suddenly wake up.
With all the success stories circulating daily on websites and social media, with all the empirical evidence of multiple research studies showing its effectiveness, why is it so hard to convince E-suite suits to reach out to customers and employees with experiential methods?
Well, we’ll let you in on a little secret: It’s scary.
”We’re seeing significant growth in experiential marketing led by creative agencies and innovative firms.Daniel YaffeCo-Founder AnyRoad
It’s so much easier for upper management to approve a new logo, or a 10% off sale, or, for heaven’s sake, that glitzy but inconspicuous new FOUR-color ad. Nobody gets in trouble by sitting quietly in the boat.
But you, you need to keep on rockin’ it. Because for every drop of blood, sweat and tears it takes to overturn the status quo, the rewards of experiential marketing—internally and externally—will overflow. Which, truly, shouldn’t scare anyone.
”Be genuine. Be remarkable. Be worth connecting with.Seth GodinEntrepreneur, Best-Selling Author, Global Speaker
Of course, print and television ads are still more than useful. But regardless what traditional ad salesmen are telling your team, the playing field is undoubtedly changing with each passing year. People are reacting to (if not expecting) ways to get to know a product, a brand, a company on a more intimate, honest level. And that’s where experiential marketing is coming up fast on the far turn.
Sight, sound, touch, smell, taste. An experiential campaign gives a customer the ability to intermingle and understand a company in increasingly unique ways. And did you know that more than 60 percent of people purchase at experiential events, while nearly 100 percent said they’d be more likely to make a buy of the product in the future? Even better, these campaigns also energize your workforce, getting coworkers solidly behind the company’s culture and values (so you better have a mission statement that’s true, that fits and one that works companywide—but more on that in another blog). It’s bigger ROI, inside and outside company walls. And it’s statistically true from companies surveyed, some of whom showed as high as a 20-to-1 return on experiential investment.
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What’s more interesting, there’s increasing discussion about ROE: “Return On Engagement.” That means firing up customers at experiential events, or with interactive campaigns that convert them to walking salesmen, globally. Those who tell friends, family and strangers your specific story, speaking of your product as a user, a satisfied customer and an evangelist. And telling the next wave to go forth and buy.
”Do what you do so well that they will want to see it again, and bring their friends.Walt Disney
Another big factor in favor of letting everyone experience your brand is that it can go on and on and on. Once you have your breakout moment, it’s easy to keep the ball rolling, easy to retell and reproduce. First, after most of these events are finished, they’re usually tailor-made for social media, websites and wherever your favorite customer interaction occurs. In fact, that’s where it can truly take off and live.
Your brand can extend invested dollars and reach even further, with media created from these experiences. They’re most certainly sharable, they’re most always entertaining and for the most part, can be executed by anyone on your staff. Everybody on the same marketing page. Everyone on the same corporate page. And as stated earlier, one of the most important benefits of experiential marketing is how it can unite, ignite and motivate your workforce. Corporate cohesiveness has statistically been proven as a byproduct, when you convince customers to buy products by engaging experientially. Win-win.
So, when are you going to make that stand? Or maybe you already have. At Experiential Review, we want to know your spoooooooky, scaaaaaary stories of attempting to sell experiential marketing ideas internally, so please tell us your spine-chilling tales below.