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The Best Experiential Marketing Trends You Need To Know In 2020

Many businesses today are choosing to bring their brands to life through experiential marketing. It’s a technique where experiences are created to directly interact with the target audience. Forbes described experiential marketing as the future of retail. When done successfully, you can potentially build a loyal customer base and increase the revenue of your business. There are many exciting and new trends in experiential marketing this year that you can potentially capitalize on in your experiential marketing campaign.

Here are some of the trendiest experiential marketing techniques that are being used in 2020.

Art installations.

An art installation can be a unique way to connect people to your brand. Many people often like to take photos of art that they see in the streets or a shopping area. An even better thing they tend to do is share it online for all of their friends and followers to see. For the film Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, the people behind it used this technique to promote it. They made large art installations of food on the sidewalks with a logo of the movie title next to it. They planted a giant ice cream sculpture and a large hamburger sculpture. As you can imagine, it got a lot of people to stop, look, and take pictures, causing their social media traffic and engagement to increase.

Perhaps you could find a way to create a life-size artistic representation of your business. You can find a local artist to help you come up with an art installation that could be visually appealing to people. While a large street design would be nice, if your budget can’t afford that, a storefront design can do just the trick as well.

Augmented and virtual reality.

Virtual and augmented reality has developed a lot over the last few years. It’s a technology that gets people to imagine possibilities and try those possibilities in a safe, simulated environment. Using this trending experiential marketing technique can provide your customers with a fun way to experience your business. KFC recently utilized virtual reality by creating a game related to their company. It was a virtual escape room where participants learned how to make KFC’s world-famous fried chicken to win the game.

If you can afford the cost of using this technology, you can try creating a game or some other experience that relates to your business, which your customers can enjoy and feel more positive about your brand.

Live events.

This experiential marketing technique is probably one of the oldest techniques used by businesses. You can do a lot of different types of live events to attract people. A common live event that many brands launch at is music festivals. Before the Vans Warped Tour discontinued, businesses were able to get their own stages at the festival and got a chance to connect with a young demographic. Sometimes, a company can even choose to be the sponsor of certain live events to generate more attention.

Your business doesn’t even have to directly relate to the event that’s being put together. As long as your target audience can find value in the event you sponsor or the event you create, they’ll associate your brand with value.

Seminars and conventions.

Through this latest experiential marketing trend, you can set your business up as the thought leader in your industry. Putting together a seminar or convention also allows your business the chance to connect with high-value prospects, experts, and partners. The best part about setting up a seminar is that the audience that shows up already has a lot of interest in your business, giving you a good opportunity to close the sale with them. You can go into deeper detail about what your company offers and what your brand is all about. In addition, a convention can give you a chance to get information about what people want from your industry. You can show off your latest products and services to see what appeals most to your target audience.

The benefit the audience will get is you’ll be providing something of value to them, making it likely the experience will connect them more to your business. Seminars don’t even have to always be conducted in person. Webinars have been an increasingly popular way for companies to promote themselves. Even prestigious schools, like Stanford, have used the tool to promote their institutions by offering free online courses. Whether you choose to do a webinar, a seminar, or convention, this experiential marketing technique can be a good opening to connecting with your target audience.

Advocacy.

Creating social good in the world is an experiential marketing trend that particularly connects with millennials and the Gen Z demographic. Most descriptions of their personality note how they’re big into social causes such as global warming and racial justice. You can create an experience that represents a specific issue that your business supports. A travel service company used this technique to their advantage by creating an experience that advocated for global warming. They put together a public installation of a large block of ice melting away. Included with the block of ice was a sign that read “Antarctica.”

The dramatic effect of this marketing technique raised awareness of the issue. In bringing up the topic, the company also mentioned that they provided personalized trips to Antarctica, and the demonstration helped to influence customers to want to take a trip to Antarctica as soon as possible. The one thing you should make sure you don’t do is fake support for a cause your business isn’t genuinely interested in. Young consumers are very quick to spot a business that comes off fake in their support for social issues.

Challenge experiences.

You’ve probably seen these all over the Internet these days. One of the most famous ones you might be familiar with is the ice bucket challenge. It was a promotion that the ALS association used to raise money and awareness for the cause of finding a cure for ALS. Challenges tend to get shared widely across social media because of how fun and interesting they are. You can try to figure out a fun challenge you can associate with your business, which can create more of a positive perception of your brand.

You could even attach a prize for the winner who creates the best video of themselves doing your challenge. It can also be helpful to start simple constructive challenges like a weight loss challenge. A lot of positive perception can be correlated with your brand from all the visual stories of people who’ve made a change in their lives from it. There are several creative challenges you can come up with, and this trendy experiential marketing technique is possibly the most inexpensive one that a business can utilize.

Food experiences.

Even for businesses that don’t sell food, food experiences have been trending because of how much it attracts people and creates a positive perception for a business brand. It’s especially the case whenever the food is being given away for free. You can go to a local cake company and get a cake created with your business brand on it. Customers that may show up to specific events for your company can be amazed by the look and taste of the branded food you have, creating a memorable experience for them. Google utilized this trendy technique when they were promoting their mini smart home speakers. They went across the country with pop-up food shops that had donuts and smart speakers.

When you think about what smart speakers and donuts have in common, you realize those two things don’t have anything in common at all. Nonetheless, the donuts drew attention from people, and Google then let the customers try out their speakers and take them home. With your own food experience, you can provide a popular food item that most people like, and when the food attracts people, you can offer customers a chance to try out your products, and maybe even take some of them home. With the help of industrial fabricators, you could perhaps set up a mobile food truck to help with creating a unique food experience.

Pop-ups.

A lot of major brands have used this experiential marketing technique. One example is Sprite. They executed a promotion where they set up a Sprite soda shower on the beach for people to take a shower with Sprite. It gave people a fun way to wash off the sand and seawater after a day at the beach, creating a memorable experience for the brand. You can find a way to do the same by setting up something like a photo booth or other useful set-ups that your customers can enjoy using and create a memorable association with your brand.

All of these experiential marketing trends will continue to be utilized more by businesses. Carefully consider and decide on a marketing technique that works best for your company. Using these trends can help to create a good image around your brand, and create a large following of customers that can grow the revenue of your business.

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Young Upstarts is a business and technology blog that champions new ideas, innovation and entrepreneurship. It focuses on highlighting young people and small businesses, celebrating their vision and role in changing the world with their ideas, products and services.

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