Wednesday, 18 September 2013

All you wanted to know about ‘Experiential Marketing’ but were 2 afraid to ask (Part II)

I have argued (see Part I below) that the key to experiential marketing lies in the way we understand the term experience. The term, I suggested, should be understood following 2 conditions:

1) A multi-level analysis, that is, an analysis where the different elements cannot be simply added and subtracted to each other, but associated as running parallel to each other, while maintaining a still tangible relation between to each other.

2) The projection of a sense of unity, which assumes the coherence of the elements collected, results in the construction of a cohesive structure, which is the network.

Just to keep things clear, the term ‘network’ is widely used today in relationship to social media networks, which are, no doubt, a type of network. When it comes to experience the concept however is owed to Bruno Latour and Actor Network Theory. It would be a long roundabout to go into the details of ANT, which forces me to continue rather to the way in which such form of analysis is applied to experiential marketing.

The question of experiential marketing cannot be taken as separate from experiential offerings. This means that producing marketing experiences is related to the task of rethinking an offering in terms of an experience.

From the side of an authentic experiential offering the key elements for the creation of an experience follow from addressing these questions:

·         What sensations are unique to your offering?

·         What reflections or ideas are unique to your offering?

·         What ideas do you want the consumer to associate with the offering at time of consumption?

·         What type of memorable experiences does your offering enable?

·         What other elements (products/services/persons) will help to enhance your consumer’s experience?

In a similar fashion addressing the following questions will allow you to construct marketing efforts that are truly experiential:

·         What concept better gathers the type of experience your offering gives consumers?

·         How can the experience of your offering be transformed so as to convey it through the various marketing channels available?

·         How can you use two or more of your marketing channels to deliver a more powerful experience of your offering?

·         How does knowledge about the elements that your consumer associates with your offering affect your messaging?

·         How can you use that same knowledge to promote your offering through the various channels? (e.g. create blogs, newsletters, infographics, etc)

The more comprehensive the answer to these questions is the more experiential your offering and your marketing will be. Answering these questions will, in turn, provide potent insights about your consumers’ attitude toward the experiential and, hence, will help you to better analyze and select the key performance indicators that drive your business.

 Written by Daniel Vargas Gómez