Planning a Corporate Event: 9 Keys to an Unforgettable Experience

Throwing an exciting, memorable party is one of the best ways of connecting with your employees and customers. A shared event can draw people together and allow them to build up relationships with your brand and with each other. What’s more, experiential marketing is a highly successful strategy for increasing a company’s reputation. Together with an experienced corporate event planner, you can come up with ideas that will wow your guests. 

But how exactly can you make sure everyone has a good time at your event? The key is planning. To get started, you’ll have to determine the purpose of the celebration. Then, you will decide on a venue, a date, catering, technology solutions, and a wow factor element. Finally, you can figure out how to make the most of the party and get a return on your investment, for example by following up with customers. Read on to find out how to best plan a corporate event.

Planning a Corporate Event: 9 Keys to an Unforgettable Experience

1. Hire a Good Corporate Event Planner

The easiest way to make sure your event stands out is to hire an experienced event planner. Such a professional can save you a lot of time and hassle, and they can help you at every step of the process. To get started, they will sit down with you and go through each element of the event. Then, they will reach out to caterers, entertainers, and the venue and set up everything.

By using an event planner, you can delegate most of the responsibility. Instead of negotiating with every professional who will provide a service at the party, you simply have to speak to one person, who then sets everything up for you. In addition to having important industry connections, a good planner also knows what to do in every situation. Even if something goes wrong on the day, they will be able to find a solution much more quickly than you could.

2. Define the Purpose of the Event 

Before you can even start planning your event, you’ll have to figure out what its purpose is. Are you throwing a party because your business has had a fantastic year? Are you struggling with company culture and hoping to put together a team-building event? Or, do you want to organize an experiential marketing dinner that impresses your clients and informs them about innovations in your firm?

The size, venue, and activities vary greatly depending on what you want to get out of your event. Therefore, you should be very clear about the purpose and communicate this to your event planner and everyone else who is involved in the decision-making process.

3. Choose a Venue that Suits Your Attendees

More than any other factor, the venue determines what your event will look and feel like. To get started, you’ll decide on the general area of your party. In some cases, it’s most convenient to host the celebration at your business location or in the same neighborhood, since this is easy for everyone to get to. But if you want to put together something truly special that includes an overnight stay, you could look further afield. 

Because your event planner has connections to various venues, they can help you gain access to locations you couldn’t otherwise get into. If you’re not yet sure where you want to host your event, you should speak to the planner and discuss your options. The ideal place should be accessible, innovative, and able to comfortably host your entire guest list.

4. Choose a Suitable Date and Time 

For your event to be a success, you’ll have to make sure everyone is able to attend. That’s why choosing the optimal date and time is so important. Before you make a decision, look at the calendar to see whether there could be any conflicts. Are some of your employees working on a big project that could distract them from the party? Are there any religious holidays coming up?

In some cases, creating a poll or emailing potential attendees about dates is the best way to avoid problems. If you’re also inviting clients, you should check that there are no big events coming up in their industry. If you have a close relationship with them, you can always reach out and double-check. The earlier you send out your invitations, the more likely you’ll have good attendance.

 

5. Consider Everyone’s Travel Arrangements 

No matter how beautiful your venue is, people aren’t likely to attend if they can’t access it easily. Prior to booking your date, find out how people can get to the event space. There should be parking available, but if you know some of your attendees will come by public transport, you also have to make sure that there are adequate options. 

If you find a venue you love, but it’s hard to get to, you could always organize shuttle buses or other modes of transport that take attendees to where they need to be. In fact, you could incorporate a vintage or novelty type of transport, which adds value to your event.

 

6. Serve the Right Food 

One of the most important elements of any party is the food served. Some venues offer in-house catering, which can be cheaper and less of a hassle than external options. You could either have a set menu, several options, or a buffet. Consider what special dietary requirements your guests have and, if necessary, ask them about their food preferences. 

You should also consider what types of drinks you would like to offer. Most people enjoy having an alcoholic beverage during a party, so providing champagne or wine could be a good idea. There are several ways to organize this. Either you could ask attendees to bring their own alcohol, or you could provide the booze. To limit the cost, you could give each person vouchers, offer a limited number of bottles per table, or give the wait staff instructions.

 

7. Identify a Wow Factor Element 

Every party needs a wow factor element, which stays with the guests long after the event is over. This could be anything, from a special venue to interesting and interactive exercises to a special food display. Small, personalized gifts in a goody bag could also help to keep the event fresh in people’s minds. Together with your corporate event planner, you can come up with some ideas that will knock your customers’ and employees’ socks off. 
 

8. Don’t Forget About Technology 

For many years, events have included various technologies. Most importantly, you’ll need a sound system that provides clear sound for your speeches and music. In some cases, hiring a DJ could also be a good idea, especially if the event is held at night and includes dancing. When you check out the venue ahead of time, you can examine the sound system and figure out how to use it. 

Since the Covid pandemic, many events also include virtual elements. For example, the attendees who are not able to make it in person could still participate via Zoom or Skype. That way, you could extend your guest list significantly without spending much money. During the planning phase, you can determine whether this is a viable option and, if so, how to make sure the virtual guests are included in the most important parts of the celebration.

9. Experiment with Experiential Marketing 

Did you know that a fun, memorable event can influence people’s perception of your brand to a high degree? If your party is meant for clients, making a good impression is crucial because it could affect your future business opportunities. A highly successful party can increase brand loyalty and encourage people to buy from you the next time they need your product or service.

In fact, creating events and experiences is one of the most successful marketing strategies out there. To make sure you get a great return on your investment, your event planners will discuss follow-up strategies. For example, you could offer your product at a cheaper price during the event or encourage people to sign up for your services. Later on, you can follow up with them via email or a phone call to encourage them to keep engaging with you.

Planning an event is harder than it might appear at first. Some of the factors you’ll have to consider are setting an appropriate date, finding an excellent venue, choosing catering options, incorporating technology, selling your product or service to your customers via experiential marketing, and including a wow factor element. With so much to keep in mind, hiring a corporate event planner is almost always the best way forward.

A good planner can help you at every stage of the process, from the initial planning to the execution, cleanup, and follow-up with customers. That way, you can create the best event possible without having to deal with the various vendors. What’s more, you can take advantage of the years of experience and industry connections of the event planner. Get in touch with us now at King Sixteen to find out how we can help you throw the party of the year.

Five Ways Experiential Marketing Is Changing in 2022

Experiential marketing has already turned the world of advertising on its ear, and with new trends emerging in 2022, it’s clear this pattern is set to continue for the foreseeable future. While this form of experience-based marketing has catered to the digital sphere in the last few years, the newest trends are reflecting the desire consumers have to return to a post-pandemic world. Let’s check out some of the latest trends to engage consumers this year.

Five Ways Experiential Marketing Is Changing in 2022

1. More Technology-Focused Strategies

Hybrid events are a carry-over trend from 2021 as brands begin to transition from the virtual-only events necessitated by the pandemic. Hybrid events typically take place online but incorporate augmented reality and virtual reality technology to immerse attendees in the event. This blend of experiences allows consumers to stay at home while also participating in online events that allow for better networking.

There are various immersive technologies that allow for better person-to-person contact, such as augmented reality used in the gaming industry and virtual talking spaces on social media platforms. The advantage of a hybrid event is that brands can reach larger audiences, including consumers that may not have been able to attend the event because of health, financial, or other reasons.

Exploring the Metaverse

Major technology companies are exploring the metaverse, an abstract virtual reality world that allows for more interaction and immersion among consumers. While the metaverse is still relatively new, the central components of using the metaverse for marketing include the creation of avatars and the use of marketing events that can be attended through virtual reality.

As a marketing technique, the use of the metaverse is still being explored, but there are ideas that could see a lot of success in the future. For example, virtual reality concerts can put consumers directly in front of their favorite artists in a more affordable way, while also allowing for personalized content. The metaverse may even allow consumers to experience using a product, such as a car, through a simulation.

2. New Sustainability Branding

Experience-based marketing is used to communicate a wide range of ideals that reflect the current attitudes of consumers worldwide. For example, many brands are investing in sustainability and other eco-friendly products to appeal to consumers who want to save the planet. Clothing brands are using sustainable clothing from fabrics that have been recycled or repurposed to create trendy fashion, while car companies are leaning into alternative fuel sources.

Sustainability branding is a trend that can be easily used in experiential marketing through art installations or other events. Sustainability branding as a marketing strategy can demonstrate how the brand is taking an eco-conscious approach to the development of its products, while also highlighting the importance of minimizing the human impact on the world.

How to Use Sustainability Branding

While every aspect of a sustainability marketing campaign can be used to highlight sustainability, such as using recycled paper to send invitations or distribute swag, it’s also important for the branding to be holistic. It’s not enough to simply be green: companies must also show how the brand is economically responsible and how the brand intends to integrate sustainability throughout the company. Successful sustainability branding builds trust consumers have in the company.

3. Refresh Older Strategies

Art installations are also quickly growing in popularity in 2022. While pop-ups and art installations are not new concepts in experience-based marketing, there are recent studies that show people are more eager to spend time outside post-pandemic and art installations are a good method to draw a crowd. The goal of an art installation is to create buzz about a product, brand, or service.

Successful art installations are entertaining and educational at the same time, particularly when art installations are paired with messages about advocacy. One reason why art installations are so successful is that they create a moment that consumers can experience. When art installations are well done, they are the perfect opportunity for consumers to take pictures to post on social media, which allows the event to gain virtual buzz, as well.

Products and Brand Reels

Video content is still one of the most reliable ways to reach consumers. Video campaigns can quickly disseminate information and are easy for consumers to digest. This strategy is even more effective when brands can create viral video content that captures the consumer’s attention. Some of the most effective video campaigns take on social causes, appeal to the consumer’s creativity, or document real-life stories.

That said, product reels are still effective in 2022. For example, brands can use video content to create a reel of their best-selling products. In one recent successful campaign, The Honest Company created a video featuring Jessica Alba, a founder of the company, showcasing how to use the brand’s best beauty products to create a “natural make-up” look via a short make-up tutorial.

Influencer Marketing

Influencers have been used in the last few years to capitalize on the power of social media. Influencers have the ability to build trust among followers and directly reach consumers to showcase a brand or product. Influencer marketing stands to grow over the next year as new technology and social media apps are used to create content to appeal to consumers.

Furthermore, influencers are often seen as a more trustworthy approach to a marketing campaign, since celebrities can be used as brand ambassadors to endorse a product or testify for a service. Through influencer marketing, brands can share content, host giveaways for freebies, or use other methods to reach a broader global audience, such as hashtag campaigns.

4. Use Simultaneous Events

Live spectator events are still a classic tactic for experience-based marketing, whether the event is an intimate coffee house performance or a concert festival. That said, live spectator events have recently transformed into live-streaming events. Online concerts emerged in 2020 as an easy way for artists to perform for thousands while their audience stays safe at home.

Although in-person concerts have become more common with worldwide restrictions on social distancing lifting since late 2021, there are still many artists who will continue hosting online concerts and other live-streaming events. In many ways, simultaneously broadcasting a live event online while hosting the event in-person is a demonstration of the flexibility future experiential marketing campaigns will demand.

5. Include Advocacy and Important Causes

Today’s consumers care a lot about culture and politics, especially major social issues that relate directly to their lives. To put it simply, for many brands, it may be hard to stay apolitical when so much about the future of consumers is determined by political issues. This is why brands that appeal to the LGBTQ community by hosting pride-related events or creating pride-themed products during June can experience so much success.

Of course, alongside generating consumer loyalty, brands that advocate for important causes can enjoy other benefits. For example, by including advocacy in the overall marketing strategy for a brand, businesses can reach a wider audience – including consumers who might not have heard about their brand otherwise. Advocacy can also reinforce company culture, which can make a business more trustworthy overall.

Some Important Causes to Consider

Younger generations place a lot of importance on values. With the prominence and influence of social media, social and political causes are often hard to avoid, and the younger generation saturates the internet with discourse about these topics daily. Savvy brands have seen this trend and adopted advocacy-based campaigns for many causes, such as:

  • Geopolitical conflicts
  • Climate change
  • Gender equality
  • Awareness months

While advocacy for important causes isn’t the right move for all businesses, there is evidence that brands willing to take a stance garner more loyalty from the public. Furthermore, brands that can educate consumers about important issues and direct consumers toward actionable steps (such as petitions or fundraisers) can also make a difference in the world.

Why Maintaining Flexibility Is Important for Future Campaigns

With the birth of digital marketing, advertising experts learned that flexibility is key. By responding to trends from consumers, brands can stay relevant by adopting new methods of reaching consumers through digital strategies, such as social media and email. Going forward, maintaining flexibility in advertising strategies is essential, especially for brands that want to keep up with advances in technology.

Successful brands will be able to use multiple channels to reach consumers with the same campaign. For example, simultaneous in-person and online events, hybrid events, and pop-up installations that create social media buzz are all methods that help brands maintain flexibility. Essentially, staying relevant will depend on how well a brand can adapt and explore novel strategies.

The experiential marketing trends in 2022 are clearly influenced by new technology. Social media and other tech-related strategies are a focal point of successful campaigns, particularly for brands that want to reach hesitant post-pandemic consumers. In addition to using novel technology, brands should also consider reinforcing their company culture with advocacy and sustainability branding. Find out how to implement some of the latest experiential marketing trends by contacting King Sixteen today.

How Does Experiential Marketing Work?

Good marketing makes an impact on the profits of your business, but a truly successful marketing campaign will make a memorable splash with brand recognition. Modern marketing strategies are designed to use the diversity of channels that businesses can use to reach and engage with consumers. One of the best modern marketing methods is experiential marketing.

How Does Experiential Marketing Work?

Experiential marketing is a strategy that allows your brand to market an experience. By marketing an experience, you can create an event that is memorable for your target audience, which will establish a positive experience for your brand that will make consumers into return customers. Essentially, experiential marketing works by utilizing the power of experiential memory to secure a long-term interest in your business.

Experiential memories are often associated with experiences, events, personal reflection, and major learning. Experiential memories are usually more concrete than other types of memories, so it makes sense to use the formation of these types of memories as a tool in your marketing toolbox. Also known as episodic memory, this type of long-term explicit memory can play an important role in creating a relationship between your brand and the consumer.

Crafting an Experimental Campaign

There are several steps to mapping out a successful marketing campaign. For an experiential campaign, you will need to focus on key points, such as engaging your targeting audience, utilizing other resources available to your business, and thinking outside the box to plan a memorable campaign. Some important steps include:

Planning Your Campaign

The planning stage for your campaign is all about setting goals and outlining ways to measure the success of your campaign. Your business will need to reflect and identify what “success” will mean at the end of the day. Being able to identify success, such as with increased profits, will allow your business to judge how effective the experiential campaign is.

For example, what is the goal for your campaign? Do you want to introduce a new product, create more interest in your business, or increase profits through brand loyalty?

Research Your Market

It’s also essential to understand your market and your target audience. Your consumer demographic will likely change from time to time, so having updated stats on things such as website traffic, the age range of your consumers, and their interests can all be essential pieces of information you can use to tailor your event. At this point in your planning, it may be a good idea to use data analytics to research what your consumer is interested in.

It’s also important to understand how you can connect with your consumer emotionally. The goal of an experiential campaign is to encourage the consumer to emotionally invest in your brand and your products. If you can connect with your consumer on an emotional level, you’ll be more likely to inspire brand loyalty and increase future business profits.

Create Your Online Presence

Social media is the single most effective tool modern marketers and advertisers can use to reach a target audience. If you don’t already have an online presence, building one up before your event is a good way to establish your brand and make your products accessible. Updating your website and social media accounts is a step in the right direction.

For brands that have already established a robust online presence, you can advertise your event through social media, such as with influencers or ads. Creating an online presence for your event, even if the event is offline and in person, is a good strategy to build anticipation for your campaign. For example, teaser photos on social media can generate interest for your event.

Engage Your Audience

You will also need to engage your audience by creating an experience that is tailored to their expectations. For your event to be successful, the experience must be related to both the brand and what the consumer is interested in. For example, if your brand is not related to food, then it may not make sense to have a food-related experience.

Engaging your audience is also about authenticity. When you are engaging your audience with a tailored experience, you may also want to involve the history of your brand and promote transparency. This will help you build trust between your brand and customers.

Examples of Experiential Marketing

An experiential campaign can take many forms. Although many of these campaigns are usually hosted offline as events for select customers, you can also think outside the box and use online events as a more cost-effective option to create an experience for consumers. A few examples of this marketing technique can include:

Pop-Up Shops

Pop-up shops are an effective way to use an experiential marketing campaign. A pop-up shop will sell limited edition products or early release products to select consumers. Many times, pop-up shops will be hosted spontaneously or will require exclusive tickets to loyal consumers. A good example is a pop-up shop related to a musician that sells exclusive merchandise or allows the fan to meet the musician to take photos.

Pop-up shops can, of course, be tailored to your brand and business. If you have a food-related business, then you can use a pop-up shop to offer samples of new products and take surveys of what consumers respond best to. Your event could even include a cooking class for a recipe that uses your products.

Entertainment

Entertainment is another way that you can create an experience for the consumer. By partnering with music venues, sponsoring concerts, or hosting comedy shows, you can create an experience for consumers that will be positively associated with your brand. Entertainment events can also include an interactive opportunity for consumers.

Virtual Events

Virtual events are also gaining ground as a way to create an experience for consumers. Virtual reality and social media are often the easiest and most cost-effective ways to reach consumers. For example, virtual reality tours of exclusive content or even dance challenges can use the flexibility of social media to create buzz about a brand.

Virtual events can also be shared across many platforms at the same time, which will enable more consumers to reach your event through more channels. Additionally, virtual events can be tailored to redirect participants to your website.

Why Marketing an Experience Is So Effective

Marketing an experience is one of the most effective modern methods to advertise your brand and increase the profits of your business. It’s important to realize that an experiential campaign is more than hosting an event. Although events that include catering, entertainment, and technical aspects are fine options for some brands, other businesses may prefer a more nuanced approach to an event to create memories for consumers.

Create a Lasting Memory

Creating a lasting memory is essential to a successful campaign. When you create a lasting memory for the consumer, you are using the power of positive reinforcement to encourage future interaction with your brand. When a consumer has a positive experience at your event or through your campaign, this memory will inspire more brand loyalty.

Build Your Brand

Whether you have an established business or your business is just getting off the ground, an experiential campaign can be a good tool to use to build your brand. Your brand is the cornerstone of your business, sometimes even more so than the actual products you offer. The brand of your business must be recognizable, have a positive reputation, and must reflect the culture of your business.

In addition to advertising the product and service that you provide, your experiential campaign will also need to speak to the culture of your company. You can do this by using recyclable goods, for example, to highlight the fact that your brand is eco-conscious, which is important to modern consumers.

Use Social Sharing

Experiential campaigns are also successful because they use the power of social sharing, which can be seen in a few ways. For example, your products can be shared through word of mouth, which spreads the good reputation of your brand from person to person. People are more likely to trust people they know about product recommendations, so the power of human social velocity can spread the good word about your services and products.

You can also use social sharing by allowing social media to reach a much wider range of customers. For example, by implementing unique hashtags for your event, you will be able to use social media to rapidly reach customers more quickly, which will generate more interest in your brand.

An experiential campaign is a marketing strategy that uses the marketing of an experience to sell a product, idea, or brand culture. You can use this marketing technique in a variety of ways, and the more out of the box in your strategy, the more success you will have. To learn more about how to make your experiential marketing campaign successful, please contact King Sixteen today.

How to Measure Experiential Marketing

Experiential marketing is an invaluable strategy you can use to reach new customers, introduce new products, and increase your brand value. Although this marketing strategy is highly effective, many business owners are interested in learning how to measure the success of experiential campaigns.

How to Measure Experiential Marketing

Measuring the success of an experiential marketing campaign is similar to measuring the success of any other type of marketing strategy. For the most part, you will be using data analytics to assess the effectiveness of the event to market to your business or products. In general, you’ll be looking at specific KPIs for these live events to assess the marketing strategy in terms of measurable ROI. Some KPIs to pay attention to include:

Event Awareness

Specifically, event awareness refers to how aware consumers and attendees are of your event, as well as how much interest your event is generating. The goal of an experimental marketing technique is to have maximum awareness of your brand, services, and products.

Website Traffic

There are a couple of ways you can measure KPI awareness, such as with unique visits or traffic sources. Both of these KPIs are related to data analytics connected to your online presence or website. For example, you may ask your data analysts to consider unique traffic visits to the website versus repeat visits.

It also helps to know how visitors are finding your website, such as through traffic sources. For example, if your visitors are coming through social media traffic, then this can give you a better idea of how awareness of your event is spreading, which may then help you measure the effectiveness of each of your advertising channels. You can also look at SEO and email strategies to judge traffic sources.

Location Effectiveness

Location effectiveness is another aspect of event awareness that you will want to measure. For example, during the event, you can judge how much time consumers spent at the location, how easily they were able to move between attractions, or even how many products were sampled. Each of these factors will be an indicator of whether the event was successful.

Attendee Evaluation

Attendance is one of the key performance indicators that you will need to pay attention to, but it is not the only important aspect of attendee evaluation. For example, attendee evaluation can be related to a positive customer experience at your event. You can use metrics to understand whether attendees seemed to enjoy the event based on the foot traffic during the event or even the average duration of visits to attractions at your event.

Consumer Sentiment

Consumer sentiment is also important as it is related to attendee evaluation. The staff at your event will be key to understanding customer sentiment. For example, you can ask staff if the customer seemed happy or had a positive experience. You may also be able to judge consumer sentiment based on how many consumers received samples or took photos. All of this information will give you an idea of how happy consumers were at your event.

Conversion Rates

For both online and offline events, conversion rates are especially important performance indicators to look at. For online events, you will be able to more easily judge conversion rates based on the traffic your website gets and how much of that traffic converts into consumers finalizing purchases. For offline events, conversion rates could be measured by seeing how many unique hashtags were used during and after your event, which could indicate that attendees are investing in your brand or products.

Consumer Retention

Consumer retention is part of analyzing conversion rates. For example, you will be able to use data analytics to compare event check-ins with the number of people who were invited to the event. You can also compare sign-ups for your event versus real-life attendees, which will give you a better idea of how many consumers were retained with the event.

Although consumer retention and conversion rates are important, they are not the only aspect of judging the success of an experiential marketing campaign, unless your event was very exclusive. If you have an exclusive event but don’t have a high number of attendees, this could indicate that your consumer retention and conversion rates are low.

Brand Mentions

Brand mentions after events are also a KPI to pay attention to. The brand mentions for your business can be measured through Google Analytics or other data analysis software that is used by social media. The more brand mentions you have, the more likely your event was successful. Brand mentions are a good indicator of judging consumer interest in your product or services.

Social Media

Social media is a key area to look at for brand mentions. Most people spend a significant amount of their day on various social media platforms, so using social media and unique hashtags to analyze interest in your services, products, or business, can be a savvy and low-cost strategy. When your social media hits viral altitude with interest in your brand, this can be an excellent indicator that your marketing technique was successful.

Staff Reflection

Staff reflection is another KPI to take advantage of, even if it’s less related to analytics and more concerned with individual opinions. However, the human factor of judging the success of an event cannot be undermined, as staff at the event will generally have a better idea of the real-time reactions consumers had to the marketing strategy.

For example, staff will be able to tell you whether a product was popular, such as with food samples. Staff will also be able to tell you if certain attractions, like photo booths or interactive games, were popular among attendees. Staff reflection will give you a better idea of attendee satisfaction, such as whether people were smiling or not.

ROI Analysis

You can also use classic ROI analysis to determine whether your marketing strategy was successful. Classic ROI analysis is done by using data analytics to assess the performance of your business after an advertising strategy is used. Essentially, this type of data analysis will let you know whether the return on your investment was adequate.

The goal of an ROI analysis is to conclude that the return of profits for your investment in an advertising strategy was greater than the money you spent on marketing. ROI analysis can also give you a better long-term look at the success of an event.

Event Survey

You may also be able to use event surveys after your event to assess whether your strategy was successful. Event surveys can be sent by mail or through email to attendees to assess what they liked about the product or service, which can also be used in the future to help you improve your business. Surveys are a more straightforward KPI, but are nonetheless extremely valuable, particularly for offline events.

Why Does Experiential Marketing Work?

Experiential marketing is highly effective for several reasons. This type of marketing strategy can be used to build a brand or introduce a new product. You can even use this type of marketing strategy to redefine the culture of your business, which can help your business move into the future.

For example, many automotive brands are now using marketing techniques such as eco-friendly in-person events to usher in the age of hybrid vehicles. Some reasons why this marketing strategy is so effective can include:

Customer Accessibility

The unique thing about experiential marketing is how accessible it is to all of your customers. In the past, event planning has been a highly localized activity that can only be accessed by a small portion of your customers. While this can still serve a function as a marketing strategy, exclusivity is losing popularity.

If you can create an event that can be attended by hundreds of people, you can increase the accessibility and conversation about your brand. For example, you can use virtual reality or online events to reach thousands of customers at the same time.

Positive Association

Another reason why this marketing strategy is successful is that it helps create a positive memory about your brand and products for the consumer. Memories are a powerful thing, and advertisers know that the key to long-term success for a business is the ability to inspire customer loyalty.

It’s much easier to create a loyal customer base when your customer can associate many positive things with your service, products, or brand. Events for customers are one of many ways you can encourage positive associations.

Marketing strategies for businesses are constantly evolving to keep up with the fast-paced reality of contemporary life. The days of newspaper advertising are long past, particularly because technology affords businesses the ability to reach all of their consumers at one time. Creating an experience for the customer helps the customer associate positive feelings with your brand. To learn more about how you can measure the success of your experiential marketing campaign, please contact King Sixteen today.

9 Things to Consider When Planning Corporate Events Post-COVID

For many months, corporate events have been off the table due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But now that restrictions are easing in many areas of the country, you can begin to plan your next company-wide celebration or training session. To make everyone feel comfortable and to reduce the risk of disease, you should consider working with a corporate event planner who can help you create a safe yet inspiring event.

You’ll want all the attendees to feel comfortable during your party or meeting, so you should determine what measures will be in place to reduce the transmission of COVID. Aside from keeping hygiene standards high, you can hold your event outside or utilize breakout rooms, send guests helpful advice ahead of time, make use of technology, and inspect the venue to make sure there is a way to ventilate the space.

9 Things to Consider When Planning Corporate Events Post-COVID

1. Find Out About Attendees’ Comfort Levels 

When planning your company’s first event after COVID, you should find out how comfortable your employees and business associates are with socializing in large groups. Someone who is at risk from the virus and has been working from home for many months might not be as happy about attending your event as those who have been working in the office and are not in one of the vulnerable groups.

An easy way to find out what your employees think is to ask them to fill in an anonymous survey. That way, you can find out how many are likely to attend the event and what pandemic-related measures they would like to see. You can then tailor your event to suit your attendees’ needs and make sure that nobody feels uncomfortable about attending the party or meeting.

2. Inspect the Venue Ahead of Time

It goes without saying that you have to inspect your venue ahead of time. But in addition to the normal issues such as seating arrangements, decorations, and entertainment options, you’ll also have to figure out how easy it is for you to implement COVID safety protocols. One of the most effective ways of limiting the spread of disease is to ventilate rooms frequently, so you should make sure that there are windows or air filters. 
If you’d like to take things one step further, you could even opt for an outside event. Many venues have beautiful parks and gardens, and some even offer covered spaces that allow you to hold your event no matter the weather. If you know that not all attendees are equally comfortable with socializing, you should consider a hybrid event with both indoor and outdoor spaces for your guests to use.

3. Testing or No Testing? 

At the start of the pandemic, it was hard to determine whether someone had COVID because there weren’t many tests available. But nowadays, COVID tests can be purchased almost anywhere, and there are even places where you can get them for free. Therefore, you should determine whether attendees should take a test before coming to your event. 
If your group includes vulnerable individuals, this could reduce the risk and increase everyone’s comfort level. Participants who tested positive can stay at home and attend via Zoom or another online platform. 

4. Keep Hygiene Standards High

Even though many people are vaccinated or have already recovered from COVID-19 and are therefore less susceptible to catching the disease, it’s still important to keep event spaces hygienic. But if you’re not an expert, it can be hard to know what measures need to be taken. Speak to your corporate event planner about how to keep your guests as safe as possible and reduce the risk of surfaces being contaminated. 

You could sanitize frequently used areas such as door handles before the event starts and at regular intervals during the party or meeting. Additionally, you should ask the venue about the measures they have put in place. For instance, some event spaces no longer use cloth chairs and have instead switched to wooden or plastic seating, which is easier to wipe down.

5. Sending Guests Information Ahead of Time 

Once you’ve planned your event and determined the guest list, you can send out the invitations. Consider whether you should include information about pandemic-related measures on your invite, since this could influence attendance. Depending on the current restrictions and the comfort level of your guests, you could also send out a separate email with instructions to participants. 

In this letter, you should state what you would like guests to keep in mind during the event. For example, you could ask them to observe social distancing guidelines and stay six feet away from others, sanitize their hands on a regular basis, or even wear masks during certain parts of the event. Clear communication is key and helps to avoid misunderstandings.

6. Use Technology to Help 

During the pandemic, technology had to evolve rapidly to meet our changing needs. As a result, we now have more options than ever. If there are attendees who aren’t comfortable with socializing in groups, you could offer a virtual version of your event. By allowing people to join both in-person and online, you are making your event more inclusive. A side benefit is that you could invite even those employees and associates who are currently in a different city or state. 
Your corporate event planner can speak to you about solutions that make planning and executing events easier. Some of the most innovative and exciting technological options are virtual queues that reduce the need for standing in line, event diagramming tools that can help you model your party or meeting, and hybrid events that allow people who are self-isolating to take part via Zoom or a similar platform.

7. Implement Green Solutions 

While focusing on pandemic-related measures is key, it’s important not to forget about green solutions. The world is moving more and more away from single-use items and practices that damage the environment. Your event planner might suggest cutting down on paper by issuing electronic invites that can be scanned at the door. 
Similarly, you could either opt for reusable or compostable cups, plates, and cutlery to minimize the damage your event does. Opting for a sit-down dinner or a packed lunch for each attendee is not only the more COVID-safe option, but it can also reduce the amount of food you waste. When inspecting potential venues, make sure to consider the environmental impact and whether it’s easy to plan a green event at the location.

8. Use Breakout Areas 

Working in smaller groups has been a successful strategy for many years, as it allows employees to speak more freely and work more creatively. If you’re holding a training or team-building session, you should consider splitting your employees up into groups and allowing them to work in separate rooms. This can help to keep the event safe and allow for a livelier and more productive discussion. 
As mentioned, outside events are always safer than indoor ones, so you should think about ways of holding these meetings in the event space’s gardens or at a local landmark like a beach or park. If the work you do requires more formal arrangements such as a whiteboard or laptops, you can choose breakout rooms that are well-ventilated and offer participants enough room to spread out. 

9. Consult a Corporate Event Planner 

Setting up a company-wide event was never easy, but it is much more complex now that various restrictions have to be observed. For this reason, it’s almost always sensible to speak to a professional event planner before making any decisions about your party or meeting. A professional can help you figure out what the best arrangements are, how to meet your employees’ needs, and how to observe the current government regulations. 

Choose a planner who has worked on similar events before and who has experience dealing with COVID-19 restrictions. To find out whether an event planning company is right for you, you can first look at their website to see what projects they have done in the past. Then, you can book a meeting and let them know what you’re planning. They can give you some suggestions and ideas, and if you find them helpful, you can hire a planner.

Most people are excited to get back to socializing after months spent in isolation due to COVID-19. But despite this, it’s important to consider the various comfort and risk levels of your attendees when planning a big event. Before you book your venue, inspect it to make sure it’s easy to ventilate and think about whether you could hold part of the event outside or whether attendees could be split up into smaller groups.

You will need to determine whether testing is necessary, what pandemic-related measures should be in place, and what information you need to send your guests ahead of time. To make the process easier, you should consider working with a corporate event planner, who can help you find safe solutions and remain compliant with government restrictions. Call us now at King Sixteen to discuss your upcoming event and hire one of our professionals.

Planning Your Corporate Event in a Post-COVID World

In a post-COVID world, the planning and executing of a successful corporate event can feel overwhelming. Numerous factors require consideration when deciding how to run the event, as guests want to know their health is a top priority to their host. Pairing with a corporate event planner to set up and manage your event is an excellent way to put you and your guests’ nerves at rest.

Planning Your Corporate Event in a Post-COVID World

Planning a corporate event presents unique logistical challenges in the best of times. With society struggling to establish a new normal, the stress associated with event planning has increased. In 2022, you aren’t merely tasked with the responsibility of providing your guests with an enjoyable event. You’re also shouldering the burden of helping to keep them safe as they attend your event.

While it would be nice if a post-COVID world meant we could snap our fingers and return to life before 2020, that isn’t the case. However, don’t let uncertainty prevent you from holding the event your business needs. Hosting a corporate event in this brand-new world is much easier with a team, such as King Sixteen, handling the leg work. Our planners are well versed in the best practices to keep your attendees safe and comfortable while putting on a fantastic event.

Maintain Standard Safety Precautions

To guarantee your guests’ peace of mind and safety, continue to follow the COVID-19 safety precautions that society has become familiar with over the past few years. By now, most of your attendees will be familiar with the routine practices that accompany gatherings of people. Your corporate event planner will work with you to create an event that impresses your guests and follows safety standards.

Digital Screening

Keep your participants safe by requiring attendants to fill out health monitoring questionnaires. Short health surveys help track illness and catch potential outbreaks before they spread. For convenience, health questionnaires can be emailed or texted to participants daily. Attendees will ascertain their health status by answering a series of questions. In addition, the survey will instruct them not to attend the event if they have certain symptoms.

Temperature Checks

Consider the benefits of having medical professionals complete temperature checks on attendees before entering the event. This process is quick and non-invasive and can occur while the attendee shows their ticket or badge for entry to the event. An elevated temperature would mean the attendee could not enter the event without receiving a negative COVID test.

On-Location COVID Testing

COVID testing has evolved over the past two years, and testing no longer requires a multi-day wait for results. With rapid testing now readily available, some companies choose to require a negative COVID test from all attendees before allowing entrance to the event. Alternatively, you could also decide to have rapid testing available to attendees if they have a fever during the temperature check or begin to feel ill, but not make testing mandatory for all participants.

Keep in mind, whatever you require of attendees, you’ll need to take equal precautions for the venue staff members, vendors, and presenters. If you offer rapid on-site tests, you’ll want to hire a company to handle the testing. Medical providers will follow proper testing protocol and help your guests feel confident in their decision to attend your event.

Maintain Rigid Cleanliness Standards

When planning the timeline for the event, it’s essential to allow for time to disinfect common areas. Having a set schedule for when rooms will be vacated for sanitation and cleaning will help things run smoothly and prevent the chance of spread should there be a COVID exposure.

In addition, all professional equipment such as microphones and PowerPoint remotes will need regular disinfection. Desks, doorknobs, and communal area surfaces that multiple people use should be sanitized throughout the event.

A Corporate Event Planner Will Make Staying Safe a Breeze

Even after two years, old habits die hard. Most of the individuals attending your events will be familiar with the constant hand-shaking standard that was typical in most industries before COVID struck. Event-appropriate signage that reminds attendees not to shake hands and maintain social distancing measures let participants know that though we are in a post-pandemic world, it is still wise to proceed with caution.

Crowd Control

When dealing with massive groups, it may be beneficial to designate traffic routes to help keep attendees from bottle-necking and becoming grouped. Depending on the layout of your event space, having one-way aisles and hallways can help prevent participants from overcrowding.

Finally, don’t underestimate the usefulness of physical barriers to help guide the flow of lines and physical markers on the floor to help enforce proper spacing in areas where participants will have to wait.

Provide Supplies

Make it simple for your participants to stay healthy. For example, offering complimentary individually-wrapped masks at entrances and places where attendees may need to remove their face coverings keeps safety requests from feeling bothersome.

In addition, touchless hand sanitizers placed conveniently around the space will help attendees keep their hands clean when they cannot wash them with soap and water physically. If your event is offering swag bags, in addition to your usual offerings, include bonuses like facemasks with your company’s logo on them, mini hand sanitizers, alcohol wipes, and even mini ultraviolet sanitizing lights.

Let Attendees Feel Proactive

For conferences or events that require attendees to be seated at desks or tables, provide each desk or table disinfecting wipes. Even though you will still need to sanitize all common spaces throughout the event, this will allow participants to wipe down their area as they go. The easy access to disinfecting wipes will allow attendees to do their part to limit germs and show them you take their health seriously.

Location, Location, Location

No longer is choosing a suitable venue location as simple as finding the right size building that fits your budget. If there’s one thing COVID has made clear regarding event planning, it’s the importance of finding a venue that will allow you the flexibility to adapt in the face of the unexpected.

A location with an accommodative policy regarding postponement and cancellation is a must. Should a COVID outbreak occur and gathering sizes become limited, you’ll want the ability to change your date or make your event virtual.

Communicate Clearly With Vendors

Speakers and vendors will each have their individualized policies regarding cancelation and rescheduling. Be aware of how close you can ask them to reschedule or cancel and note it in your vendor agreement.

If it looks like your event could be rescheduled, reach out to vendors and speakers as soon as possible. This action is not only the professional thing to do, but it also increases the chances that they will be accommodating and more likely to do business with you in the future.

Ask Your Planner for Recommendations

One of the numerous benefits of partnering with a corporate event planner is the insider knowledge they bring to the table regarding venues and vendors. In addition, your planner has industry-wide connections that they can use to help you find the ideal partners for your event. They can also handle the logistics, from finding you a venue to managing vendors and speakers and rescheduling and adapting the plan if necessary.

Take the Party Outside

Depending on your event and location, it may be worth moving the festivities outdoors. Outdoor events grew in popularity during the pandemic, and their popularity hasn’t waned even as things return to some semblance of normal.

Hosting your event outside makes it easier for people to spread out, and the fresh air allows the virus particles to dissipate. If you think you may experience difficulty convincing participants to wear masks consistently, an outdoor event is a smart move.

Watch the Weather

While hosting an outdoor event can ease your stress in some ways, it can bring new challenges. When your event is outdoors, you are at the mercy of the weather, which means keeping a close eye on the forecast. You’ll also want to choose your event date carefully and look at the weather patterns from past years to ensure you don’t inadvertently schedule during times known for inclement weather.

Let Professionals Help

When you hold a corporate event, your hosting represents your company. That means you want to put your best foot forward in every area. The venue, layout, staffing, speakers, vendors, food, and now post-pandemic, protecting the health of your attendees, are critical components that must be flawlessly combined. Working with a planning service ensures your event accomplishes everything you need and leaves your attendees happy and raving about their experience.

It’s time to stop stressing over planning your post-pandemic corporate event. Instead, focus your energy on things you’re passionate about and leave the event planning to our talented team. Then, you can feel excited going into your event and relax knowing that a professional planning team has handled the details, and all you need to do is show up. Contact King Sixteen today and let us design the perfect event for your company.

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How does geo framing work?

1) Create a geo frame

Our agency can draw a digital frame around any building or buildings in the United States down to the square meter. Any device with location services turned on (94% of cell phones) can be captured and targeted for ads. This allows us to target very specific interest groups at home, work, or travel.

2) Trace back to Home IP

We can go back in time up to six months on geo-frame capture. This
allows us to target a specific window of time at a building. For example,
let’s say you wanted to capture the device ID’s at a medical equipment
conference that happened two months ago. We can input the event
start and end time and only capture devices that attended the event.

After device capture, we can trace back to their home IP addresses and
deliver ads to all devices on their home network, including video ads to
web and streaming services like Peacock, Hulu, and Amazon Prime.

3) Deliver digital ads

After defining our geo-frame targets and time frame, we can deliver targeted ad content to those devices. Ads will propogate across all non-vice websites that support ads. In addition, we win our ad calls at a much higher clip because we are not looking for demographics, locations, or interests. Because we have captured the unique device ID, we are only targeting people that were inside of our geo frames.

How Much Does Experiential Marketing Cost?

When it comes to owning a business, one of the most important things to do is consider your marketing strategy. In today’s world where people are craving personalized, unique experiences, experiential marketing is one of the most effective marketing tactics. So how much does experiential marketing cost? Here’s an overview.

How Much Does Experiential Marketing Cost?

If you’re looking for an effective and lasting way to build up your brand, grow your customer base, and sell more of your product, then you might be looking into something like experiential marketing. This is a highly successful way of helping your business thrive.

Like anything you need to help your business become the best it can be, experiential marketing is an investment. You invest money into your marketing campaign which gets more customers interested in your product and results in higher revenue down the line. But how much will it cost you? The cost of your marketing campaign will depend on your needs as an individual business. However, there are a few factors that you should be aware will affect your costs.

The Location

When it comes to experiential marketing, one of the most important things to determine is where your event is going to take place. The location you choose will play a massive role in your attendance as well as how successful your marketing campaign is.

Where you choose to hold your event will also factor into your overall costs. Your location fees could potentially eat up a decent chunk of your budget. At the same time, you don’t want to skimp out and end up choosing a bad location just because it was cheap. It’s all about finding balance.

The Technology You’re Using

Depending on what you are marketing, you might need to have certain kinds of technology present at your event. When you set up your marketing strategy, it’s a good idea to consider implementing some of the latest technology.

Integrating technology into your event could add a lot to the overall experience. Using technology to collect information about your attendees can also tell you a lot about your customer base, and what the best ways to reach them post-event are.

 The Scale of Your Event

Of course, another major factor in what your marketing costs are going to be is the scale of your event. Some campaigns might call for a big, extravagant experience, but be aware that this is going to cost more.

On the other hand, you can have just as good an experience with a scaled-down, more intimate event. Again, it largely depends on your needs as an individual business and what your vision for the event is. Remember to stay flexible when planning and be open to changes in scale.

What Exactly Is Experiential Marketing?

You may have heard this type of marketing also be called engagement marketing. Essentially, it’s a way for customers and potential customers to get up close and personal with your brand and product, and experience it in a way that is much more engaging than traditional marketing campaigns.

This is a highly effective marketing tactic because it allows customers to build a much more emotional connection with the brand through this experience. This emotional connection will, in turn, promote your customers to buy your product and stay loyal to your brand down the line.

Why Should You Consider Experiential Marketing?

There are lots of reasons why you should think about using this form of marketing for your brand and business. There are several benefits that you can expect to get from experiential marketing. Here are just a handful of them:

More Personalized Engagement with Your Customer Base

In today’s world, it’s more and more important for customers to be recognized as individuals. Customers want to form connections with brands that make them feel that they’re being treated as humans rather than just customers.

Part of what makes this kind of marketing so special is its ability to connect emotionally with customers. When you set up an experiential marketing campaign, this allows your customers and potential customers to experience your brand in a deeply personalized way. Your customers will feel like you’re treating them as individuals which will make them much more inclined to support your business and brand.

Encourages a Positive View of Your Brand

One of the most important things when it comes to building a good customer base and increasing your ROI is how your customers see your brand. You want to build as positive a view of your brand as possible if you want people to keep buying your product.

Experiential marketing will do a lot to increase how positively people view your brand. When you provide customers a way to experience your brand in unique, personalized ways, it makes people remember their experiences and therefore your brand and products in a positive light.

Encourages Word of Mouth Marketing

There are lots of marketing tactics out there, but few are as effective as simple word-of-mouth marketing. If a customer has a good experience with your brand, they are likely to tell friends and family members about it, which in turn encourages them to check out your brand.

When you provide customers with a good, enriching, and interactive experience like experiential marketing, your customers are going to remember your brand. They’re also more likely to tell the people in their lives about your brand, which builds your customer base and helps your brand grow.

Connects with Customers Non-Obtrusively

In today’s world, it can feel like advertisements are more prominent than ever. We see ads everywhere we go, whether it’s on a bus on the way to work or in the sidebar of a website we’re visiting.

Many customers feel that advertisements are growing more and more intrusive, which can result in a negative view of a particular brand. Customers might become more and more annoyed with the way advertisements are presented to them. If you go with experiential marketing, your customers want to be at your event, and they get to be there on their terms. This will help customers feel far more confident and comfortable with your brand.

Customers Can “Try Before They Buy”

Another major benefit of experiential marketing is that it gives your customers to chance to take a close-up look at your products and see them firsthand without having to commit to a purchase. We all know how nerve-wracking it can be to buy something before you’ve really had the chance to check it out.

When you provide your customers with experiential marketing, your customers will get the chance to check out your products and see how they like them. They’ll be much more inclined to purchase a product that they’ve tried out and enjoy rather than one they haven’t been able to experience firsthand. And bear in mind that this isn’t just about physical products. You can do this for services as well by offering things like free trials and exclusive content.

Engages Your Customers’ Senses

Our senses play a major role in the way that we interact with the world around us. They can affect whether our experience with something is a positive one or a negative one. One of the benefits of experiential marketing is that it engages all of your customer’s senses.

When you do this, you make it far easier for your customers to create memorable positive experiences that they’ll associate with your brand. And the more positive experiences you create, the more likely people are to purchase your product.

Can Easily Be Paired with Other Marketing Strategies

When it comes to marketing your brand, you’re most likely not going to be able to rely on one strategy alone. Unfortunately, not every strategy pairs well with others, so you’ll need to think hard about the strategies that you employ.

One of the best things about experiential marketing is that it can easily be paired with most other marketing strategies. For example, it’s a highly effective strategy to pair with something like a social media campaign, which can help your event reach an even wider audience.

Boosts Brand Loyalty

One of the most important things when it comes to marketing is building brand loyalty. It’s important to get customers interested in your products and services but it’s equally important to build loyalty with your customer base. Loyal customers are repeat customers and are much more likely to tell friends and family about your brand.

Experiential marketing allows you and your brand to have face-to-face experiences with your customers. Because it is so highly personalized and designed to promote positive engagement with customers, it is the perfect way to nurture brand loyalty with your customer base.

If you’re interested in trying experiential marketing, the most important thing to do is to work with a team that knows what they’re doing. This will ensure that your event goes as planned and that the experience is the best it can be. Ready to work with a qualified team? Give us a call at King Sixteen.

Is Experiential Marketing Effective?

Traditional marketing is dead. Long gone are the days when you could just put an ad in the Yellow Pages and customers would flock to your business. Customers are bored with traditional commercials, now utilize ad blockers on their web browsers, and pay more money for ad-free streaming services. What’s an organization to do? Enter experiential marketing, one of the most modern ways to connect directly to your customer. Is this right for you?

Why Experiential Marketing Is Right for You

How Is This Marketing Different?

In the last decade, customers are seeking experiences more than ever before. Traditional marketing forces customers to be passive audience members of an organization’s messaging. Customers no longer want to be bystanders. Experiential marketing directly includes customers in the experience, allowing them to be part of the process. Effective marketing of this type also engages all 5 senses.

This new way of marketing directly engages organizations with their customers and encourages participation in a brand “experience”. It focuses on creating authentic and memorable connections with customers, which drives emotional relationships with brands. This type of marketing has multiple names. It’s also known as:

  • XM marketing
  • On-the-ground marketing
  • Engagement marketing
  • Live marketing
  • Participation marketing

What This Type of Marketing Is

This form of modern marketing can occur in person or virtually. The following are examples of events that can be fashioned to take advantage of experiential marketing:

  • Test drives
  • Kiosks
  • Games
  • Photo ops
  • Livestream events
  • Virtual parties
  • Festivals
  • Contests
  • Workshops and classes
  • Pop-up events
  • Product showcases
  • Demos
  • Samplings
  • Retail installations
  • Retreats

What This Type of Marketing Is Not

Some businesses confuse this type of marketing with others. For instance, this is not the same thing as “experience marketing” or “event marketing”. Experiential marketing is a philosophy on how to change consumer behavior and does not include one-off events. For instance, trade shows, conferences, meetings, and the like are not included in the definition of this.

In addition, it’s important to understand that this type of marketing does not just benefit the marketing department. It’s directly connected to the core of the company and its mission and values. It impacts the entire organization and is focused on increasing lifetime customer value. Finally, this is not an overnight solution. Amazing experiences require excellent strategy, forethought, and the right people to create them.

Why This Marketing Is So Effective

Human beings are emotional. Experiential marketing bridges brands with customers on an emotional level. This forges trust between customers and organizations, creating more engaged and loyal customers. By involving customers along the way, they feel more connected. They feel less sold to, which changes the way they see an organization’s brand.

In addition, this type of marketing uses non-traditional advertising strategies. Innovative techniques combined with modern technology create memorable, one-of-a-kind experiences that can’t be easily matched by competitors. Using customer-focused approaches creates lifetime value. Customers are looking for happiness in today’s world and companies that can bring that to them will win.

Benefits of This Type of Marketing

According to a recent study, CMOs are devoting 21-50 percent of their budget to these types of marketing campaigns over the next few years because they’ve been proven to work. There are many benefits to this type of marketing. Here are just a few:

  • Brand awareness
  • Brand loyalty
  • Personal engagement
  • Positive experiences
  • Social networking
  • Lead generation

Brand Awareness

One of the easiest and fastest ways to promote your brand is to create an experience that goes viral. With so many customers on social media today, positive experiences are shared quickly on social platforms. When these go viral, a brand can put itself on the map through millions of hits overnight. Brands that have been around for a decade have launched to the top of their industries through this type of success.

Brand Loyalty

Customers no longer want to know just what your product does or what your service provides. They want to know the why behind it, and more importantly, they want to feel deeply and positively about it. This is critical when customers have to choose between your brand and your competitor’s. If your brand can make a strong, emotional connection with your customer, why wouldn’t they choose your brand over others?

Personal Engagement

In a recent study, 84% of customers stated they’d choose a business that treated like a person instead of a number. Customers are craving personal engagement. Providing personal, human experiences enriches their touchpoint with your brand, creating lasting and memorable memories. What better way to create a loyal customer who’ll choose you over the competition?

Positive Experiences

If you can create positive touchpoints with your customers, they’ll associate that positive feeling with your brand. The more positive experiences you create for your customers, the more they’ll associate those positive feelings with your brand. Creating a compelling and cohesive positive story is the key to winning their business for life.

Social Networking

When people experience something emotional and positive, they love to share that experience with others. With social media dominating consumer attention, word of mouth has never been easier. Customers love capturing photos and videos of their experiences and sharing them on their social networks. Resharing those experiences is easier than ever, positioning your brand to become viral and recognizable with the right set of circumstances.

Lead Generation

Any immersive experience that requires customer data before participating is one of the quickest ways to create leads. And if you win a customer’s loyalty through a single experience, you have done the heavy lifting to gain a strong lead. Imagine being able to do that on a larger scale by reaching tens of thousands of customers through a single virtual event? You’ll be able to generate enough leads for the year!

What to Avoid With This Type of Marketing

This type of marketing can backfire if not approached correctly. Organizations may jump headfirst without realizing all the nuances. This type of marketing is very attractive, trendy, and provides high-value benefits. Without the proper expertise and planning, however, it can have unintended consequences. For instance, imagine being a customer promised an amazing experience and then finding out that it’s an immersive sales pitch.

Customers no longer want to be sold to. They dislike sales pitches. If your marketing experience is sales forward, you’ll lose potential customers, and possibly for life. And, they have the power to share that negative experience with their communities, which can be detrimental to your brand. The best approach is to stick to your values and mission statement vs. trying to push too much of your product and services onto customers.

How to Get Started

To get started with this type of marketing, you’ll need to plan properly and understand the nuances. You want the experiences you create for customers to be authentic and tied closely to your brand values. The steps for getting started on your own marketing journey include:

  1. Understand your customers
  2. Aim for long-term value
  3. Put brand awareness first
  4. Create uniqueness
  5. Engage all senses
  6. Find your audience
  7. Interact with customers
  8. Promote audience participation
  9. Allow customers to customize
  10. Collect and analyze data
  11. Quantify the value provided
  12. Improve for next time

One of the biggest challenges of any type of marketing is proving the return on investment (ROI). Experiential marketing directly competes with digital and content marketing, making the proof difficult to tie back directly. To properly measure the results, you might need to invest in special marketing software. You may also need to create and track metrics all along the way.

Proven Case Studies

Not convinced yet? Here are some real-life case studies:

IKEA

One effective example of this type of marketing is the case of IKEA. They once gave 100 customers the chance to sleep over at their warehouse. This was in response to a customer’s comment asking to do exactly that. If a single customer could directly influence 100 people, imagine how far-reaching that positive experience was for IKEA.

Oreo

During the 2014 SXSW festival, Oreo, Twitter, and 3D printing combined to create one-of-a-kind Oreo cookies on demand. Attendees could receive a uniquely flavored cookie based on flavors trending on Twitter at that moment. This captured the attention of many SXSW attendees, creating a hyper-event that tantalized multiple senses.

Anheuser Busch

Another example is Anheuser Busch. During another year’s SXSW event, they fashioned a beer garage for their customers. In it, they included a completely immersive 4D experience. Using VR headsets, customers were given a full virtual tour of the Anheuser Busch St. Louis brewery. Cold air was blown on them when they entered refrigerated areas. Containers with hops were positioned under their noses to give them a real-life scent of the brewery.

Are you ready for the next level of advanced marketing? Contact King Sixteen today to discuss how we can uplevel your marketing practices to modern strategies. We provide comprehensive services and assist with corporate event planning, product launches, talent booking, event design, and fantastic experiences. We’ve worked with the largest brands in the world and want to establish lasting relationships with our partners to create rewarding marketing events. Let’s build something amazing together!

What Brands Use Experiential Marketing?

If you have ever seen someone giving away free samples at the supermarket, then you have experienced experiential marketing. But we promise it can get a lot more interesting than that. Gone are the days when a consumer just needed to like your products. Now brands need to be relatable and show they connect with their consumers. Creating experiences is the perfect way to engage with your consumer base and make your brand unforgettable.

What Brands Use Experiential Marketing?

Experiential, sometimes called engagement, marketing can cover a wide range of events. It essentially means that the company has gone beyond traditional advertising and created something that allows the consumer to really connect with the product. Often this means putting on an event, creating an experience that enables the consumer to really interact with the product.

The list of companies using this style of branding and advertising grows longer every year. As demand grows for connection, trends change to a preference for experiences, and technology allows more innovative campaigns, more brands have seen the power of this concept.

 

The Experts in the Field (and in the Park, the Bar, and More…)

LuluLemon

LuluLemon is often considered a giant when it comes to this type of marketing. While some companies go for big, loud events to bring an awareness of and personality to their brand, LuluLemon is effective by living what they sell.

They continuously run HIIT and yoga workshops and consistently provide spaces for people to use their product for a good workout. These events promote the health and well-being that many purchasing their products are striving to achieve. And helping their customers with the shock that, stylish as they are, having the right pants doesn’t do the whole job for you.

Red Bull

Red Bull has always had its finger on the (likely fast racing) pulse in marketing. Attaching themselves to music and extreme sports, they have created a pretty cool image for something people usually use to stay up all night to write assignments and program code.

Not content to sit on the sidelines, Red Bull has had enormous success running their own events. They have created events that specifically and effectively target their own demographic. These include a zany Soapbox race that invites fans to make and race their own self-made carts. Most famously, they sent skydiver Felix Baumgartner to space for the world’s longest skydive. A pretty awesome stunt from a soft drinks company.

Netflix

Netflix is a company that is good at getting its audience. They respond to the data they collect by creating content that people want to watch. Sounds pretty simple, but a lot of other companies don’t seem to get it. They’ve applied these same skills to create some fantastic events to promote their shows and brands.

They are a fan of creating spaces that allow fans to immerse themselves in the worlds of their TV shows. For instance, Mayor Kline’s Fun Fair in Santa Monica allowed people to immerse themselves in the world of Stranger Things. Banger’s Sausage House and Beer Garten in Austin was transformed into a speakeasy to promote The Highwayman. To promote their film, Birdbox, they sent a double-decker bus around Los Angeles and Austin to invite participants on to give them some thrilling jump-scares. A pretty memorable piece of marketing.

Airbnb

It may not be surprising to learn that Airbnb is skilled at experiential marketing as offering experiences is a key section of their platform, but they’ve put on some impressive events to promote their hosting platform too.

They have teamed up with VICE and Pantone to create some unique stunning places for people to stay. Their most elaborate giveaway involved sending the lucky winners to have a sleepover with The Mona Lisa in the Louvre. This prize included a feast, private art tour, and concert in Napoleon III’s lavish Apartments surrounded by priceless artwork.

Innovators in the Streets

Zappos

Zappos experiential marketing got a lot of attention when they asked people to give up free cupcakes. They partnered up with Google and followed a Google van giving away free cupcakes in exchange for selfies. Their station then offered a chance to exchange these cupcakes for goodie bags from their brand.

Videos of people hesitantly handing over their delicious-looking cupcakes to what is essentially a guy in a box are pretty hilarious and gained attention. They did receive nice sunglasses and watches in return. We may have stuck with the cupcake though.

Misereor

This one required a lot of coordination but was a pretty special “Social Swipe” Billboard: interactive billboards that you could use to donate $2 at locations such as airports and shopping malls. They would feature things like a loaf of bread you could ‘slice’ with your card and know that money was donated to feed people.

The company fighting poverty found a new way to make people care to donate. Misreor capitalized on the fact that we never carry cash anymore, and tapping or swiping our cards is no longer strange.

Oreos

Oreos put together a delicious and creative innovation with 3D-printed Oreos. Oreo partnered with Maya design at SXSW for this stunt. They utilized a lot of current technologies to create their experience.

Those visiting the Oreo Lounge could choose from 12 creamy flavor combos, and their cookie would be ready in under 2 minutes. It’s a lot more tech involved than just pulling one from the wrapper but very clever marketing.

Creative Campaigns

WestJet

WestJet received thousands of views on their heartwarming “Christmas Miracle” campaign YouTube video. They had asked passengers about to step on a flight what Christmas presents they would like.  While the flight was en route, staff rushed to buy those exact gifts and deliver them to guests at the baggage carousel.

The passengers were pretty surprised to see the gifts they had asked for actually appear. There were widescreen TVs, Android tablets, Galaxy Phones, and more. There was also one guy opening a packet of underwear and socks, who probably regrets that he didn’t go a bit bigger. Not hard to see why most of these folks would have a strong attachment and want to book WestJet again.

Casper

Casper has been doing a pretty good job making some excitement out of marketing mattresses. Something many would consider a pretty mundane purchase. They got people talking with their clever marketing at the annual South by Southwest Festival in Austin, Texas.

This particular year the usual shortage of hotel rooms was worsened by a flight-canceling snowstorm. Casper teamed up with Standard Hotel’s One: Night app to provide cheap hotel rooms for people. Of course, they fitted those hotel rooms with a Casper mattress. There were also plenty of extras added on, including the option to call for a bedtime story and have someone tuck you in!

Coca Cola

Coca-Cola offered free James Bond movie tickets from a vending machine at a train station in Antwerp, Belgium. The catch was that you had to get to another vending machine on another platform in seventy seconds. Along the way, they had strategically placed obstacles to get through.

Video of the stunt quickly went viral. This fun and adventurous giveaway created good publicity for both Coca-Cola and the new James Bond film.

Mistakes Have Been Made

Although using experiences in marketing is a great strategy, it is important to know what you’re doing. When interacting with your consumer base, there’s a lot to think about and a lot that can go wrong. Our article wouldn’t be complete without talking about some of those disasters.

 

Dr. Pepper

Dr. Pepper had a fun-sounding campaign with a large-scale treasure hunt for people across the city. The prizes were pretty big, too. One gold coin would get the claimant ten thousand dollars in return.

It’s all fun and games until someone buries a coin in a cemetery. Hard to see exactly how no one could see the upcoming disaster. The city pretty quickly closed off access to the site as players started to descend; as you might expect, they were pretty concerned about the cemetery being desecrated as people tried to find the valuable coin. Dr. Pepper: “What’s the worst that could happen?”

Jagermeister

Well, Jagermeister really did mess up by accidentally poisoning those attending their event. In Leon, Mexico the folks running a pool party decided the event would be super cool if they poured liquid nitrogen over the pool to create a smoke effect.

Shockingly, these party planners were no experts in chemistry. What they did not realize was that liquid nitrogen combined with chlorine creates a toxic reaction. The fumes that rose from the pool caused several people to fall ill.

Snapple

Snapple created a fruity flood all down the center of New York in a disaster you would think would be easier to spot coming. They decided to create a 25-foot-tall, 17½-ton frozen version of their drink as a downtown stunt.

As it was a hot summer’s day, and the giant popsicle quickly started to melt. Firefighters had to close off city streets to clear up the mess as would-be onlookers fled for higher ground.

As you can see, experiential marketing is all around with many large brands trying their hand in creating engaging events to promote their brand and engage their consumers. When you get it right, it can be very effective in creating a positive memory and link to your brand with customers. If you would like to learn more and get professional help engaging your clients, talk to King Sixteen today.