The COVID-19 pandemic shook up the marketing world and also made consumers more unpredictable than ever. Fortunately, one of the marketing tools that has persisted with positive results, despite these difficult times, has been experiential marketing. This is a type of personalized marketing strategy that evokes emotions in consumers and motivates them to take the next step in their buying journey.
Experiential marketing has been especially successful with Millennials and Generation Z, consumers who, despite the global crisis, are still looking for brands that create emotionally connecting experiences with their consumers.
The goal of experiential marketing is for companies to connect with consumers through some type of positive sensory experience. Plenty of companies are aware that this precise type of emotional marketing is what motivates consumers to switch brands and even to become loyal followers of the brands they switch to.
In the past, companies created these types of marketing campaigns through pop-up shops, flash mobs and events. However, the pandemic made for some great changes to these efforts as well as to the purchasing habits of consumers.
The future of experiential marketing
Although things aren’t going to be changing in terms of live events, younger generations are still looking for emotional and connecting experiences before they decide on making a purchase. This means that companies have to find new ways to produce those experiences, including through more hybrid forms of experiential marketing including live streaming or online meetings.
In fact, plenty of businesses have already begun experimenting and testing new tools and strategies with the goal of recreating live experiences in the digital sphere. Although they’re not going to be the same as in-person events, they can still give consumers the illusion of an in-person experience.
Communities around brands
Finally, one of the ways that companies are able to get consumers to share interesting experiences with each other and with their brands is through communities. Companies able to create communities around their brand will have a group of people who are going to stay faithful and willing to share their experiences of those communities.
To do this, the first thing businesses should do is examine what consumers are saying about the company itself and its products or services, and where those comments are being shared.
After that, companies should look to identify a common passion within their consumer community, their business’ goals or values, and anything else that’s relevant to the story behind the business. The next step is to offer the consumers something that’s exclusive, unique and enjoyable. Finally, it’s important to keep consumers engaged throughout that connecting experience by creating polls, games and contests that show appreciation for fans and encourage them to share any sort of content they create connected to the brand itself.