How Great Brands Use Experiential Marketing: Volkswagen, Coca-Cola and Cupcake Vineyards Create Innovative Ads

Companies are constantly looking for innovative ways to market their brand or product. Experiential marketing is a creative way to involve the very consumers who purchase their products into their ad campaign. Follow the tips in this article to reflect on some of the most memorable campaigns when designing your experiential marketing ad.

Experiential Marketing with Best Damn Ale
Experiential Marketing with Best Damn Ale. | Credit: Brooklyn Outdoor by Candice Simons

Advertising is all about finding the best way to make your company’s product or brand stand out from competitors. For this reason, many companies are using experiential marketing as an innovative way to capture the attention of their target audiences. Experiential marketing involves interaction or participation from potential consumers. Whether it’s an event, interactive activity, or etc., experiential marketing campaigns are some of the most entertaining and memorable campaigns out there.

Here are three ways you can use experiential marketing for your brand:

Experiential Marketing That Appeals to the Senses

The trick to a memorable experiential marketing campaign is to immerse your audience and give them an experience they won’t forget.  Let your consumers participate in your campaign by allowing them to see, touch, smell or interact with your brand in any other way.

For example, at this year’s Lollapalooza, Cupcake Vineyards had a “Poptail Shop,” which allowed anyone who had a 21+ wristband a free “adult” popsicle. The marketing brought in festival goers with bright colors, bubbles, giant Jenga and Tic-Tac-Toe, and photo-ops.

On a 100-degree day, the wine flavored popsicles were perfectly paired with a specific type of Cupcake wine, which was available for purchase in a tent next door. This campaign appealed to the senses by giving festival-goers fun things to see, touch, and taste, and provided different levels of participation.

Bring the Everyday to Life

Volkswagen created another clever experiential marketing campaign. In order to add a little fun to everyone’s morning commute, Volkswagen created “Piano Stairs” in a Stockholm Subway Station, where a note would play each time someone stepped on an individual stair. Subway riders were able to play their own songs just by walking.

Although the campaign did not directly advertise Volkswagen Cars, participants were able to associate the brand with having a little unexpected fun. This is an effective campaign because it allows for audience participation while being creative and innovative thinking.

Make a Difference With Experiential Marketing

Corporate social responsibility is important for all companies, and letting the public participate in a company’s philanthropic efforts can make for a good marketing campaign.

In 2013, Coca-Cola designed an ad campaign to make a social impact by creating interactions and connections between everyday people from two countries with a known rocky relationship: India and Pakistan. This experiential marketing consisted of setting up high-tech, “Small World” vending machines in busy areas of Lahore, Pakistan and New Delhi, India.

The vending machines had built-in cameras that connected the participants from different countries, making them work together with the person on the screen. Participants had to mirror each other’s movements and do other teamwork tasks to get their soda.

This was an innovated way to inspire participants to set aside their differences for a couple of moments, showing that there was hope for peace between the two countries.The campaign provided positive publicity for the Coca-Cola company and displayed its desire to create change. This campaign is an example of involving everyday people to increase brand awareness through personal interaction.

Author: Candice Simons

Candice Simons is the CEO and Founder of Brooklyn Outdoor, a regional and national force in the outdoor advertising industry, with satellite offices and full-time sales representatives in Detroit, New York and Los Angeles. Brooklyn Outdoor is the only major outdoor advertising firm headquartered in Detroit. Simons was recently named one of Crain’s Detroit Business’ “40 under 40” and is the founder of Detroit lifestyle blog, “j’adore Detroit.”

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