Experiential is a growing segment of marketing and rightfully so. Consumers value experiences over material things, and in an age of digital bombardment, a brands only hope of connecting with consumers on a deeper emotional level is in person. The issue brands face with spending on experiential is the lack of data they capture to demonstrate the return. Experiential agencies must therefore build robust data capture mechanisms that both check in consumers to confirm their attendance, and track consumer interactions across the experience to understand how, when and where they engaged. Constructing this system is an artform and a successful experience includes these key elements.
1. Check-In / Registration: Similar to how a phone needs to first capture your face or finger print before it can be your unlocking mechanism, a good experiential activation has a data entry point that can then understand the consumers behavior across the digital footprint.
2. Core Experience: The critical element of the core experience is building a unique, interactive, brand relevant experience that people want to engage with. You must also ensure technology is in place to track the consumers engagement across the experience to understand what visitors engaged with and how.
3. Digital Keepsake: Always give the consumer something to take home digitally. It makes the experience memorable, encourages social sharing, and provides a reason for the consumer to offer their information at check-in (they want the keepsake).
4. Social Listening: Create a mechanism to track what people are sharing, especially through the digital keepsake you’re sending them.
5. Direct Data Feed: Build the proper endpoints to connect the information being captured on site to the brands CRM database. This builds a valuable first party audience seamlessly.
6. Post Experience Follow-Up: You shouldn’t wait until after the experience is over to construct a plan to re-engage your consumers that visited your activation. Automate the process by creating a communication strategy up front.
Most experiential agencies do not have the technical resources to build the architecture needed for this level of tracking and interconnectivity, and that’s where Float comes in. We build the end to end system that allows agencies to demonstrate the return on investment while delivering an incredibly valuable first party database for the brand. If done correctly this database not only includes contact information, it includes behavioral profiles with deeper consumer insights that enable proper customer segmentation, re-targeting, and look-a-like audience building.
Experiences are an amazing opportunity for brands to connect with their consumers, drive earned media with buzz worthy activations, and collect valuable data that influences every facet of their marketing strategy. The next time you conceptualize an experiential concept, think about how hard that experience is working for you and what is needed to unlock the ultimate value. It’s not enough anymore to create a great experience, a system must be built around the experience to unlock its full potential.