ABC’s The Bachelor and its sister franchise, The Bachelorette, have long been fan favorites. In fact, this season’s January premiere brought in over 6.5 million viewers, earning it first place among other reality TV shows in its time slot. Big drama and unbelievable romance are what the program is best known for. And it is true that “unbelievable” seems quite literal. The couples have extraordinarily low success rates once the final credits have gone up. How can love start so strong, yet fizzle so fast?
It’s because the dates the bachelor takes his contestants on are far from average. While the everyday couple heads out for food and drinks, these TV twosomes enjoy private concerts, helicopter rides, free falls and body painting. And the reason these “extreme” dates work is backed up by the writers of Psychology Today. These experiences result in a higher level of interaction. It gives them something to talk about, and helps them find the other person more attractive. It also uncovers things an average first-date conversation wouldn’t.
This approach works well for reality TV stars, if only until actual reality enters the picture. But, when launching interactive marketing campaigns, these engaging experiences can improve brand event outcomes. And the good news is that brand experiences don’t require a commitment quite as huge as marriage. Unlike relationships from “The Bachelor”, these brand experiences set the stage for a positive long-term customer relationship.
How Interactive Marketing Improves Events
Interactive marketing shares the same goal as event marketing. They both aim to create two-way communication between consumers and brands, though their approaches are different. One breaks digital barriers, and the other removes physical ones. And, while their measures of return can also vary, combining their power can deliver unprecedented results.
So, if you’re not already engaging in interactive marketing before or during your experiential marketing activations, consider the following advantages. Much like an action-packed first date, interactive marketing campaigns will:
- Generate excitement.
- Build relationships.
- Supply consumer data.
These benefits set the stage for event and experiential marketing success. They allow companies to create a positive brand experience and better achieve brand loyalty when coupled with invaluable face-to-face interaction.
Interactive Marketing Campaigns that Inspire
The first recommendation a Forbes article gave companies for 2017 surrounds interactive marketing efforts. “Think of ways to get readers to actively participate instead of passively consume.” If you’re looking to better engage event attendees, these interactive marketing campaigns set the bar.
1. The Sephora Collection Tent
Sephora has become known for its efforts to help keep concertgoers looking fresh and fabulous at music festivals. To do so, the beauty retailer sets up a tent, at Coachella for example, where appearance is as important as the music. Inside, individuals can touch up their hair and makeup and cool down. They can also test products and get free swag. But, Sephora isn’t leaving the event empty handed.
The company encourages visitors to post selfies and other pictures of their experience on Instagram using a custom hashtag. This increases Sephora’s return on engagement (ROE). It places the brand in front of the attendees’ families and friends who are not in attendance. And people are likely to participate, knowing their pic becomes eligible for a “regram” by Sephora, who boasts over 10 million followers!
The company took its interactive marketing efforts in the tent a step further for NYC’s Panorama Music Festival. Visitors to the tent could use an interactive touchscreen to describe their festival experience. Their input returned product recommendations, which they could share, alongside their Panorama statement, on social media. It was a fun tie-in to the festival that could develop into greater ROE and future sales for the brand.
2. The adidas #myneolabel campaign
Adidas is a long-time leader in shoes and fitness apparel. Its products are often spotted on sports fields. It’s also remembered for its casual styles turned fashion classics. Yet, the company recognized a gap in its approach that kept it from reaching today’s younger consumers. So, it combined the best elements of each line to create its NEO line.
NEO launched to fill the need for affordable and fashionable footwear for Gen Z. Its slogan is “forever curious,” denoting its release of frequent new trends. And to help develop these fresh looks, engage consumers, and drive sales, the brand activated the #myneolabel campaign. This initiative encouraged their target audience to design their own adidas apparel and shoes. To do so, they doodled on models and submitted their ideas via Snapchat. Engagement rates were high and resulted in a 400% increase in the brand’s Snapchat followers.
This is a great example of the power of digital interaction. It put the adidas brand in front of millions of consumers and awarded four winners an envy-worthy prize – a visit to the company’s Germany headquarters. This trip allowed the winners to see their designs come to life. In combining the interactive #myneolabel campaign with the experiential element of visiting the adidas headquarters, the brand showed that there are several ways to keep consumers engaged both on and offline.
3. The Lay’s Do Us A Flavor Contest
The leading potato chip brand’s annual contest is in its fourth year. And Lay’s is getting in front of consumers at every turn, including through social media. The company’s current call to action is to visit their website, where you can submit your idea for a new chip flavor and view those already proposed. Next, the brand pits two flavors against each other, and visitors select which they’d eat.
Once the submission deadline has ended, if the company builds on its past success, Lay’s will take its efforts to the streets. In years past, brand ambassadors armed with bags of the four finalist flavors asked passers-by to sample the chips. They encouraged them to cast their official vote for their favorite via the company’s website, by text or using a certain hashtag on social media. Like in the Sephora campaign, Lay’s knew this last method would result in a higher ROE. The brand understands the power of combining digital and in-person initiatives to maximize their campaign’s popularity year after year.
Planning and executing experiential and interactive marketing campaigns takes a lot. Once the details are finalized, it’s important to have the right people in the field representing your company. Since 1999, EPS has provided brands and agencies with top tier event staffing and execution services. Let us show you how we can add immense value to your campaign while removing your event’s HR stress from your internal team.