You’ve probably seen photos of pop-up events at big companies with new, exciting products or quirky themes and wondered what they might be. These events are a lot more than just celebratory launch parties: they’re known as brand activation events.
Different than traditional brand marketing, these events aim to raise awareness around your brand and increase engagement by providing an interaction or experience. Often loud and proud like Bloomingdales’ scavenger hunt, brand activation events create unforgettable and unique memories that customers will come to associate with your product or service.
If you’re a large company looking to get started, here are a few proven tips and tricks leveraged by organizations that have succeeded in doing brand activation events:
1. Create exclusivity
The more buzz you create about making the event small, short, and sweet, the better. Customers love to feel that they are a part of something special, and brand influencers love to be associated with creative and unique moments created through event marketing. Take the time to use this to your advantage when you promote your event—reach out to influencers and put them on VIP lists. Then, promote exclusive tickets to other likely attendees.
A company that does this successfully is Bumble. Their event marketing has seen significant success over the past few years. With a mighty network of ambassadors across the country, Bumble often creates events that feature panels or quirky IRL spaces.
2. Leverage technology through photos
Technology is experiential marketing’s best friend. The more tech-friendly the event, the more ways there are for users to interact with your brand via social media afterward. Some examples include:
• Setting up a photo booth with creative tasks to encourage participation.
• Creating shareable, viral hashtags for opportunities to win giveaways.
Additionally, using virtual sign-up lists to capture new participant information helps you make sure that you actually capture any new engagement.
3. Work closely with your staff.
The better informed your event staff, the better the experience your customers will ultimately have. Assign specific tasks and responsibilities to certain people, and make sure that everyone is contributing—this fosters a spirit of direct and meaningful customer engagement.
For big companies in particular, experiential marketing creates an additional opportunity for internal brand engagement. By bringing together employees in new ways in which they have not worked together before, you’re creating a spirit of exciting innovation and brand loyalty.
When embracing brand marketing, make sure you think about the long-term goals of really bringing your product or service to life, and create an unforgettable experience that will inspire lasting buzz and engagement for time to come.
Meta - You don’t need to be a massive company to employ brand activation techniques, but here are a couple examples of they do it.