Small Business Brief


Experiential Marketing: How it Works, and Why it Works

Doesn’t it seem like our attention is constantly pulled in a million different directions? It makes it hard to focus on one thing.

This is a big issue for advertisers, too. Without interesting and memorable marketing materials, it’s all too easy for a consumer to forget about your message.

That’s where experiential marketing comes in. Dubbed “the future of customer engagement” this exciting trend offers new opportunities to reach your audience.

Keep reading to learn more about experiential marketing and what it could mean for your business!

What is Experiential Marketing?

Experiential marketing is a form of marketing that actively engages the consumer, often allowing them to try the product or service for themself. It takes a comparatively more hands-on approach to traditional marketing, which is almost always passive and non-interactive.

You might be surprised to hear that this fun form of marketing is nothing new. On the contrary, we can trace experiential marketing back to 1886, when John Pemberton began handing out samples of his sweet and fizzy new beverage, Coca-Cola.

How It Works

So what does this look like in the real world? Odds are, you’ve experienced it before, even if you didn’t know it at the time.

Say you’re looking to buy a car. No matter how impressive a vehicle looks on TV, odds are you’re not going to buy one without first going for a test drive.

That in and of itself is actually a form of experiential marketing since you’re testing the car for yourself.

Other examples include interactive events like handing out samples or escape room experiences. Companies use these all the time, especially at trade shows and industry events.

Why It Works

The key reason why experiential marketing is so effective is that it establishes trust and brand credibility. It all circles back to the significance of personal knowledge.

Let’s go back to the test drive example for a moment. By allowing you, the consumer, to get behind the wheel and experience the car for yourself, you’re forming a connection with the product that you wouldn’t otherwise have. Now, when you make a purchasing decision, you can use your firsthand experience instead of relying on hearsay and ads.

After driving the car, you’d know how it handles, its features, mileage, and more, giving you a sense of authority on the product. You’ve experienced the product and therefore you know it.

Make Your Next Marketing Campaign an Experience to Remember

Experiential marketing is, in a way, a self-explanatory term. It’s all about the experience. By delivering a memorable encounter, brands can interact with consumers in new and exciting ways.

As you begin to formulate your next marketing strategy, think about how experiential marketing can establish credibility, whether you’re handing out a sample, going for a test drive, or delivering a more unique experience.

And if you enjoyed this article, don’t forget to check back with our blog for even more great content!