X is for eXperiential

X for eXperiential: what is experiential marketing?

The amount of messages that are pushed onto us on a daily basis is uncountable. Just think of all the ads, subtle and unsubtle, you see when browsing the web, scrolling through newsfeeds, checking emails, watching videos and also reading articles. This has made it very difficult for brands to connect with their audience in the digital channels. A company’s main aim is to grab the audience’s attention and interact with them, but this has become extremely challenging to do in the digital world.
So the question here is, how can a brand stand out from all the competition and make an impact? Through experiential marketing, of course.

What is experiential marketing?

Experiential marketing focuses on making the customer engage with the brand and experience it first hand. It focuses on creating an emotional link with the customers, one that will remain with them for as long as possible – even forever!
Many big brands known worldwide have adopted this method to engage with their audience.
Let’s have a look at some of them.

Coca Cola – 007

Coca Cola used their “Coke Zero” product to promote the Skyfall movie by associating the “Zero” to 007. An interactive Coca Cola distributor was placed in a train station, where travelers were invited to ‘unlock their inner 007’ by going on a mission. The train passengers who bought a drink from the vending machine were given the opportunity to win tickets for the James Bond movie, all they had to do is get to a train platform in 70 seconds. Obviously, reaching the platform wasn’t all so easy. Check out the video:


Another very well known experiential marketing advert that went viral around three years ago is the TNT “We know drama” promotion. A red button was placed on a relatively quiet square in a Flemish town with a sign saying ‘push to add drama’, inviting people to press the button. Once pressed, the quiet square would turn into a drama scene – promoting their slogan ‘your daily dose of drama on Telenet’. Here’s a grasp of what happened:

The Simpsons

Back in 2007, Century fox and 7-Eleven partnered up to promote the new Simpsons movie. 7-Eleven turned some of their shops into the Simpson’s famous shop Kwik-E-Marts, in which products from the actual series were available for purchase, such as: KrustyO’s Cereal, Buzz Cola, and also Squishee Frozen Drinks.

Ikea Big Sleepover

In 2011, the Ikea in Essex hosted a sleepover where 100 lucky winners had the opportunity to sleep at the store. This was the result of a Facebook fan group, with over 100,000 people, called ‘I wanna have a sleepover in Ikea’. The winners could choose their beds, sheets, and were also given manicure and massages. A sleep expert was also available to provide people with advices, and help the interested ones choose a new mattress.

One of the best ways for a brand to connect with their audience is to give them an experience they won’t forget. Thinking outside the box, as the examples above showed us, is the answer as to how to get such an experience. A positive experience will result in great reviews (the digital ‘word of mouth’), which is exactly what a brand needs to become successful.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Insights from our CEO

Industry insider knowledge and business leadership insights from Rik's mind to your inbox.

You can also connect with him on LinkedIn or schedule a call.

Thanks for subscribing.