The New Marketing: Designing for Experience
Novelty is the New big thing.
Although we all get lost in our digital devices for hours each day, people still crave the meaning gained from novel experiences. That’s not to say the two can’t work together, because smartphones have become an integral part of our social and psychological reality (and happen to be high-res cameras that fit in our pockets), but we all crave the feelings of connection and curiosity from engaging with exciting real-life surroundings. Now more than ever, designing an immersive space or experience for your audience can seriously take your brand to the next level.
Experiential Marketing means to provide people with real-world unique experiences, in a bid to engage customers and potential clients offline with the knowledge that it will be spread online. In fact, you have probably found yourself in the midst of one of these campaigns; experiential marketing seems to be everywhere, from the live launch events, pop-up shops, and brand-centric guerilla installations to the virally popular instagram playgrounds like San Francisco’s Museum of Ice Cream (above) and NYC’s The Color Factory (right). The truth is, people cannot resist to have themselves photographed in these unique environments, and then share their exceptional experiences with their friends online.
The Experience Economy
Experiences are proving to have increasingly significant value as a driving force behind brand recognition and word-of-mouth marketing. Millennials, who are quickly becoming one of the largest consumer groups in today’s economy, don’t respond effectively to traditional marketing strategies, and generally prefer to spend money on experiences over physical objects.
Feel that FOMO
All types of experiential marketing have one thing in common: inducing FOMO (the fear of missing out). Millennials in particular feel increasing pressure to present a fun, happy and interesting life on their social media feeds, always attempting to keep up our outdo their friends and followers. Give them this ability, and they’ll love you forever.
what are you waiting for?
From Volkswagen’s Piano Stair in Stockholm (left) to Redbull’s dangerous stunts and IKEA’s “I Wanna Have a Sleepover” event, the vast majority of experiential marketing efforts so far are being conducted by large brands with considerable budgets. It’s time for smaller brands, restaurants, offices and independent retailers to harness the lessons learned and propagate their brand to new customers, increase their visibility and re-excite existing consumers through experiential design.