5 Experiential Marketing Trends That Are Ruling in 2018

Experiential Marketing offers unparalleled potential for brands to create experiences & create an emotional connect. Check out these experiential trends that are ruling the marketing world.

We live in an age of short attention spans where every human experiences thousands of stimuli. For your brand to make an impact on customers you need to make your stimulus leave a mark on their mind. With an Experiential Marketing campaign your customers will engage with your brand in ways that will make you stand out from the rest.

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Oreo's Daily Twist Campaign

Experiential Marketing is a seasoned tool that has been used by brands since many years but with the leaps in technology in recent years some new experiential marketing trends have emerged. In this article we take a look at certain experiential marketing trends that you can capitalize to engage with your potential customers:

This post is a part of our series on Experiential Marketing (visit the main page by clicking on this link) or download the guide directly in PDF format from below.
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1. Going Beyond Reality

In the past decades traditional marketing methods used TV and Newspaper ads, social media ads, physical events and putting up stalls at public places. With the advent of technologies like Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, and Mixed Reality, experiences can go beyond the real world.

Nowadays, through augmented reality applications, creative marketeers can unlock the potential of these technologies to create alternate realities in which potential customers can immerse themselves and interact with your brand in many ways.

Using one of these technologies WOWSOME designed an interactive kiosk for Royal Challengers Bangalore during the IPL to engage their fans to support their favourite team. Fans could cheer and show excitement in front of a camera and their team players would score runs on a pitch displayed on a screen in front of them. This made the fans feel involved in their team’s performance and heightened their brand engagement for RCB.


Also see: 5 Ways To Engage Customers With Augmented Reality

2. Let's Go Mobile

With 530 million smartphone users in India and growing, it has become the fastest medium to reach people and offers unparalleled opportunities for brand endorsements. Compared to the previous generation, the Gen Y constantly uses smartphones and engages with a plethora of content daily fighting for their attention.

To capture that, brands have to set themselves apart by adapting their ways of marketing according to the current trend. Taking advantage of this, many companies have launched Augmented reality applications and used experiential advertising to enhance the mobile experience. Using Virtex Arena by Virtex Apps, users can simulate a baseball game happening on the pitch during the break time in baseball games. This enhances the user's experience and keeps them engaged even during break in the games.                                                                      


Another brand that used this experiential marketing trend was Coca Cola when they launched their Magic Christmas campaign. As part of this campaign, users downloaded their Augmented Reality application and engage with the brand in three different ways.

Firstly they could stand on a sign with Coca Cola and could get clicked with a virtual Santa Claus. Secondly, they could scan the Coca Cola sign at a bus stop and get to see a magical video from the brand. Thirdly they could scan the Coca Cola bottles and enjoy the magic as it snows around it. These experiences made a memorable  and deep impact on users during Christmas season.                                             


3. Why So Personal?

The age of “one ad fits all” is over as users are absorbing so much content each day. Now, experiential ads need to be personalised based on a users whims and fancies to seem appealing to them. Users are looking for targeted things that are tailor-made for their needs and wants rather than generic things tailored for all.

Brands have to target these customers in a personalized way and that's where Experiential Marketing comes into the picture. Using experiential marketing, experiences and content can be designed that personally targets users. With the rise of more and more features on social media, personalized videos have a become a powerful tool to achieve this.

Cadbury capitalised on this well with their Cadbury Glow campaign in India. As part of this people could connect their Facebook profile to Cadbury's website and order a Cadbury Glow Box. On receiving it they have to scan a QR code to see a personalized video based on their memories on Facebook. With this experiential marketing campaign they reached more than 17 million people on Facebook.                                       


4. Straight To The Heart

Gone are the days when special features and low prices alone could get you customers. Nowadays, people give preference to brands with whom they are able to  have an emotional connection.

The emotional connect has been used by various social impact organisations over the past decades but sympathetic messages are not sufficient anymore. People like to witness the impact of their engagement with the brand. The emotional bond once formed with the brand is etched forever and generates lifetime value for the brand. 

Also see:  3 M's of Marketing: Mixed Reality, eMpathy, and Social Impact

Misereor, a German aid organisation, created an award winning experiential marketing campaign called The Social Swipe. They used a marketing method where they put up interactive posters in public places with a slit in between using which users can donate 2 Euros by just swiping their credit cards.

On swiping, the card symbolically cuts through the chains binding a Philippine child prisoner or cuts a slice of bread for a family in Peru. This way of marketing gave the donors a sense of importance that their contribution mattered and made a real life impact.


5. Standing Out = Getting In

It is perhaps the oldest trick in the book that what stands out for the customers gets in their minds. Since time immemorial, some brands have come up with some downright crazy and wacky ideas to make themselves stand out from the rest.

This trend has found its place in Experiential Marketing as well with brands using the power of technology like Augmented Reality, Mixed Reality, and Virtual Reality to differentiate themselves in the market. While it is a very effective tool, it comes with the risk that the crazy idea might not generate the kind of attention you wanted it to. Thus, it is a gamble with high rewards. Let’s take a look at such an idea that worked very well for one such brand.

At the SXSW 2014, people lined up for hours to get their customised 3D Printed Oreos with flavours suggested by people on Twitter. Everyone got the chance to witness the high precision technology used by Oreo to create customized flavors on-the-go, 3D print them and serve to the people. It’s a crazy idea but it made its impact and Oreo reached the top trending things on Twitter.

Experiential Marketing
offers unparalleled potential for brands to create experiences that use modern technologies, are mobile friendly, have a personal touch, create an emotional connect and make them stand out from the crowd. So, why should you be among the rest when you can be the best?