Using activations as a marketing strategy is an experiential element of your brand. It means creating the chance for people to try your product, experience your service and bring your core values to the real world.
Innovation, disruption and impact. Those are words you´re about to listen if you´re going to attend a conference in the next days. These words are powerful, but it takes more than some packaged jargons to create recurrent and successful experiences in your marketing strategy.
Experiences or things?
Market research states that consumer habits are changing quickly. From 2015 to 2019, for example, non-essential expenses rose up more than 20% in the United States. Most of these expenses circle round travels and fancy dinners, both considered unnecessary indulgence in a near past.
The world is revolving around experiences.
If you’re in doubt that this is really happening, open any social media app. You ́re friends, relatives and work colleagues are living an experience right now. It could be a learning and development session or a nice eatery they just found. From pocket events to immense conferences, there you go: there is an event going on right now. Event marketers are taking advantage of these unique moments and redefining them not as a choice, but as a must-have brand experience for any business.
In addition to that, you’ve got three generations now that are completely adapted to technology and naturally make use of them for almost anything that ́s possible. Millennials, born between early-80’s to late 90’s, are still the majority. Gen Z, born in the early 2000’s, is about to turn twenty now, reaching a consuming peak in the next 4 to 5 years. Therefore, time doesn ́t stop, so let’s see what Generation Alpha, born from 2010, got reserved for us in the future.
A comprehensive marketing strategy creates brand experiences that also work as market research.
Events are one of the most efficient ways of offering brand experience and helping business to reach their goals. For instance: 60% of companies heard by Freeman Data Benchmark Study state that they incorporate event data gathered for their overall product development efforts.
It’s not about you, it’s about your brand. It has to have a unique and self-confident personality. AI and machine learning are all around, but let’s not forget the fundamentals: your brand aggregates value through connection with consumers. So, if you ́re looking for human connection, let’s make it human.
Abuse technology. Humans and AI are not rivals. A customer centric experience – and therefore a customer centric business – can be way less tough to achieve a true and consistent relationship.
Events provide the opportunity for people to unleash attitudes and beliefs spontaneously. This exploratory method can detect behaviors otherwise impossible if we rely only on descriptive market research, as people answer them with the rationale part of the brain.
Three steps to enhance the impact of your marketing strategy with events.
Create a calendar of regular events to sell regularly. Event Track research, from Event Marketer, states that 67% of consumers purchased products direct from consumer experiences. If the first thought that comes to your mind is about the expenses it will incur, you didn’t quite understand the importance of having your brand out there, in the real world. Holding an annual trade show or conferences is for sure a way to connect with a lot of people, but not every event needs to be as complex as that. Smaller fairs, workshops and even more intimate happy hours can turn out into real business opportunity.
You don’t need to be updated about hundreds of tools that come out every day – particularly because they cost you money – but you need to choose the right ones. Especially because every dollar spent on in-person meetings and business events generated US$ 1,60 dollars back to the investor, in the US, on 2018. These “7 ways to market your event for free”, recently published by InEvent, has updated and straight-to-point material. They ́ve also got a summarized list of handful resources at “Tools Every PCO should use”.
Data is not the future – it’s the present. We all want results that matter. Data will start and sustain an effective event marketing strategy, so you´ll be able to prove your performance to your clients. Set your KPI’s and benchmarks before the event and you ́ll be able to show practical and real results. Some of the tools cited in the articles above also help you with that.
Don’t forget to check these other essential checklists to master event planning skills: