4 Ways Experiential Marketing Beats Traditional Marketing

While Super Bowl commercials still command six figures for thirty seconds, brands of all sizes are focusing more heavily on experiential marketing than ever before. Creating an emotional connection with consumers is not only more affordable than marquee traditional advertisements, the results are priceless. 

Experiential marketing has numerous advantages over traditional marketing, and here are four ways that it’s better than ever. 

1.     CREATING MOMENTS THAT LAST 

Advertising isn’t worth much if it doesn’t have a lasting impact on your target audience. Memorable moments create lasting brand relationships and evangelists and generate organic social shares, which live in people’s feeds differently than advertorial content. Experiential marketing gets to the root of the audience’s psyche through immersion and action. Consider these stats from OnSpot Social:

People generally remember…

 2.     POSITIVE BRAND ASSOCIATIONS

A brand association is what consumers think of or remember when they hear your brand’s name. Experiential marketing works because it invites your audience to do something memorable and create a positive brand association. An emotional connection to your brand may not be on the list of traditional ROI measurables, but it should be. Brand sentiment is rapidly becoming one of the leading ways to measure the success of a campaign. 

 3.     DEVELOPING AND REPURPOSING CONTENT

The buzz generated by an experiential activation creates an amazing opportunity to reach an even larger audience beyond the attendees. Not only can content be shared on social by your brand and attendees, it can also be repurposed and distributed through different media channels after the experiential activation has taken place. Budweiser held a tongue-in-cheek funeral for 3.2% beer in Utah after the Prohibition-era law was repealed, which led to a fun night in downtown Salt Lake City and content creation opportunities for an ongoing campaign marking the arrival of true “Bud Heavy” in Utah. Instead of a commercial shot in a studio setting, the campaign relied on imagery and footage captured during the experiential 3.2 funeral. Talk about getting more for your ad dollar! 

4.     REAL TIME INSIGHTS

There is a critical distinction in the age of social media–does your ad have engagement, or just reach? You can buy space in all the Newsfeeds in the world, but if you don’t engage your audience, it’s simply not an effective marketing strategy. Experiential marketing engages consumers in ways that go beyond the endless scroll of content and gives brands real-time insights into how consumers respond to your brand and content. 

IKEA recently threw a series of in-store sleepovers and “after hours”  sleep festivals that not only turned many shoppers’ dreams into reality (sleep in one of those comfy IKEA beds!? Yes, please), it gave the brand valuable insight into what products resonate most with consumers. What better way to know which beds are most in-demand than celebrating all things sleep at IKEA stores in memorable fashion? 

Experience Matters 

When it comes to marketing, delivering experiences matters. Brands that can engage and delight consumers are more likely to be top of mind, create positive brand associations, and even gain priceless consumer insights that cannot be replicated by even the most detailed analytics tools on traditional interrupt ads. And if you want to throw a memorable activation, experience matters, too.

What Makes (and Breaks) Experiential Marketing Campaigns [Updated]

A couple of years ago we posted our first take on What Makes (and Breaks) Experiential Marketing Campaigns. All of that wisdom is still relevant, and now we’ve been thinking about what experiences and events might look like post-pandemic. We’ve also spent two more years growing and evolving with the industry, so here are our updated thoughts on “What Makes (and Breaks) Experiential Marketing Campaigns.”

Location

This is the most important element of an experiential marketing activation. You can design, budget, and execute the most engaging activation in the world, but if the location is wrong, your impact will be limited. The right site for your activation not only reinforces an experience, it maximizes the potential interactions you receive. The importance of location isn’t focused solely on the volume of people, either. It also needs to be relevant to the audience you want to reach.

And in the post-COVID world, location will matter in new ways. Spatial planning and allocating extra room for people to spread out is important for social distancing compliance and ensuring visitor comfort. Make sure the space feels open, the pathways are spacious and accessible, and signage is visible and plentiful. The world is eager to return to communal experiences, and yet people will be leery of crowds for years to come.

Safety measures and messaging

Health and safety measures have always been a consideration but how safety measures are presented and implemented will mean everything in a post-pandemic world. From abundant hand sanitizing stations, to dedicated staff cleaning high-touch surfaces to HEPA filters and air purification, you’ll want to mention the health and safety considerations of your event before, during, and after opening day.

In addition to wayfinding and branding, your event signage will need to promote good hygiene, social distancing, and health guidance without being intimidating. It may be necessary to explain new policies and restrictions in detail. People will notice the effort your brand puts into a fully detailed health and safety plan that includes smart practices like virtual queuing, safety checks or screenings, and touchless services. Use this as an advantage.

Focus on your core audience

Desire for events will be high but people will be apprehensive about crowds. Your brand’s return to experiential after the all-clear is the perfect time to focus on intimate events with a smaller number of people, whether that’s VIPs or those farther down your funnel. They will appreciate the feeling of being a part of the core community and the safety in lower numbers.

Following stay-at-home orders, brands and marketers can get ahead of the game by reaching audiences through intimacy, personal connection, and exclusivity. Hosting activations for smaller groups will also allow for reduced travel risk and crowd management risk. 

Reference: Adweek – Marketers and planners may have to adjust to new consumer mindsets.

Quality of the build

After quarantine, audiences will experience a new round of “first impressions” with many brands and experiences, which marks a unique opportunity for brands to get a second chance at first impressions. A high quality build with unique, memorable features and shareable moments will make a lasting impression and capture the imagination of visitors hungry for entertainment. 

This Nike+ Run Club experience created a fully immersive experience that emulated being inside of the Tron movie franchise, all while providing professional coaching and tech demos that built strong relationships with consumers.

While your brand may not need to go as far as dropping treadmills in Times Square, you should pay close attention to the level of detail and quality of materials used in your experience. Your guests might not remember all of the details at your event but they will definitely remember how they felt during the experience.

Time and patience

As we begin transitioning towards the future, now is the time to think, rethink, and plan your next activation. Nothing is moving as quickly as we would like, and while this may feel frustrating, it also creates ample opportunity to plan and design stunning experiences. Concerts and sporting events have been cancelled and indefinitely postponed, so now is not the time to set an event date. Instead, use this time to regroup, refine your messaging, and get creative. Consumers are eager to engage, but also nervous to do so. Brands are ready to return to “normalcy” but know that will take time. Patience and time management is critical right now because when we get the all-clear, experiences will be bigger, bolder, and more badass than ever before.

Never Stop Dreaming 

We are all in this uncertainty together. When we are free to plan and execute experiences again, it’s going to be an epic (and safe!) reunion for all experiential marketers and friends. By planning ahead, brands can position themselves well for future experiential marketing campaigns. If you can dream it, Pineapple can make it happen. And while we’re no strangers to making things happen on a tight timeline, having a plan in place will let your brand be one of the first to make a positive impression on consumers when the time is right.

 

When brands shine in the time of COVID-19

An open letter to the marketing industry from an experiential agency CEO

Dear friends of experiential marketing, 

With everyone isolated at home right now baking bread, binge-watching Tiger King, and lamenting how March felt like an epoch that spanned years, I have had a lot of opportunity to reflect on a response to what is happening in the world, and in our industry, while on walks with my pup, Brooklyn. 

As the days and weeks of isolation go on, we are seeing businesses pivot and organizations flux. Unemployment is high and owners are stressed. There isn’t a playbook for this kind of scenario and while we can’t solve every problem, what we can do is stay positive, stay busy, and stay authentic. 

Our belief is that experiential marketing has seen exponential growth over the past several years for a very important reason — humans crave live experiences. They crave engagement, interaction and real-life moments. Although VR/AR and online platforms make it easier to create exciting digital experiences, nothing replaces being shoulder-to-shoulder in an outdoor venue with thousands of people swaying to the music. Digital can’t replace the picture in your head of thousands of iPhone lights seemingly floating in the darkness and the goosebumps you get while a band takes you on a magical journey. 

As an agency, we have delivered sneakers from drones, built eight-foot gumball machines, and worked on some of the biggest and most magical music festivals on the planet. We have engaged consumers in so many immersive ways and facilitated the release of every emotion a human can have. Now is the time for us to push the boundaries, elevate your brands’ messages, and bring even more emotion and love to what we do. 

We’re making a commitment to stay true to who we are as a business and as an agency family. We’re not going anywhere and we don’t think experiential marketing is either. When this is over, people are going to want to celebrate together in person and with community, and live experiences will be the way in for brands. 

If I take off my business hat, I can say that what is TRULY most important to me is that you all continue to create, dream, and bring live experiences to your consumers faster and better than ever. Whether your next project is with The Pineapple Agency or another agency, I am challenging you to keep fighting. The world needs us right now. We are not just marketers, we are shaping our world’s narrative. We bring life to brands, and more importantly, we bring life and light to humans. 

Virtual cheers,

Justin Moss
CEO, The Pineapple Agency

The Pineapple Agency Expands Denver Headquarters

Experiential marketing and creative events agency actively hiring several new marketers to lead brand activations and campaigns

Creating memorable, immersive experiences that capture today’s consumers attention is what we do — it’s what we live for. Since The Pineapple Agency was founded in 2014, we have pushed the creative boundaries on what is possible, from drone deliveries launched from yachts to an 8’ tall gumball machine that dispenses tennis balls. We have worked countless hours to create multi-dimensional communications and experiences around brands, bringing huge results to the table—greater awareness, brand buzz, enhanced perception, and, ultimately, increased sales. And we’re just getting started…

Today, we’re excited to announce The Pineapple Agency is growing. Earlier this year, we moved our headquarters into a 5,000 square foot facility located at 1195 South Lipan St. in Denver. We are now expanding into another office at this location, increasing our Denver footprint to 8,000 square feet in total!

We are also actively looking for fresh talent to add to our creative team. In 2019 alone, we’ve increased our headcount by 50 percent and grown our revenue by 50 percent this year. We were also named one of Colorado Inno’s 50 on Fire, highlighting those companies who are crushing it across the Colorado tech and startup ecosystem. The crazy growth we’ve experienced with clients like Rivian Automotive, Anheuser-Busch, P&G, Converse, Insomniac and Live Nation means we’ve actively looking for idea generators and natural problem solvers to join us. If you’re a creative and share our drive to deliver top-notch results for our clients, drop us a line with your resume at jobs@thepineappleagency.com

Founder and CEO Justin Moss said, “I am so excited to grow the agency and bring on new team members, who will take us into 2020 and beyond. Pineapple is dedicated to helping brands reach consumers, but it’s not always about a huge event. It’s about what the brand wants customers to feel, what they want them to learn, the message they walk away with. That engagement is what keeps brands relevant in a competitive and crowded world. We have exciting projects in the works with clients like Laura’s Lean Beef, Anheuser-Busch + Denver Broncos, Insomniac, and many more. We are constantly iterating and evolving to stay ahead of the marketing trends — to keep things unforgettable, different and meaningful.” 

Wanting to learn more about what The Pineapple Agency is up to?

let’s chat.

Light bulb on chalk board

Partner with Experts to Make your Clients Fall in Love with You all Over Again

As marketers it is in our nature to seek out and provide our clients with the very best to help them reach their goals. We know our stuff and we use what works. We look at targeting, impressions, reach, and conversions. We analyze anything that can be clearly measured and have even devised ways to encapsulate the less measurable to the best of our abilities. Why? Because we want our efforts to deliver; we want to provide our clients with a path to success.

It takes a lot of work to become an expert within any marketing discipline and it is that expertise that our clients value.  Companies are finding great returns by forging a relationship and an emotional connection to their audience through live, interactive experiences, other wise know known as Experiential Marketing. Reports from Forrester to Freeman are citing 2018 as the year of Experiential Marketing. So what do you do when your clients curiosity, interest and marketing budgets are placing favor on Experiential Marketing? Solution: partner with an expert.

Experiential agencies, the one’s who have made it their sole purpose to design, build and execute memorable experiences that engage the senses and emotions of an audience, are available to help you. The best experiential campaigns are designed in partnership with the brand at the core and the brand keepers involved. They begin long before the actual event and extend long after the site is cleaned up through strategic planning and integration into the larger picture of the companies branding and advertising.

One in three CMO’s plan to direct up to 50% of their budgets into experiential advertising according to the 2017 Freeman study. We all know that consumers attention is getting harder and harder to capture with the average time to create an impression down to a record 6 seconds. Consumers are getting more and more demanding for control over who and what they see, hear and talk about. Blame it on the digital age, search, and on demand content, but consumers of all ages want to cut down the clutter in their lives and take back the power to control their own content.

What is it about Experiential that’s so darned alluring to consumers and marketers alike?

First, it doesn’t push itself into consumers lives. It invites participation by serving up a desirable experience; connection, a deeply rooted human need. Consumers get to choose if they want in. The power shift in that is immense in the eyes of the consumer and in that move alone you’ve gained a win.

Second, experiential is, by in large, fun! It’s entertaining. Who says you can’t have meaning and entertainment all in one, certainly not an experiential marketer, we live to craft just those very moments.

Third, let’s face it, we live in an age of stuff. The amount of product available for consumption is ridiculous. Most of us have more stuff than we’ll ever need and the next greatest comes out before the glory of the last greatest can even wear off. At the same time, our lives are being co-opted by screens and our interactions are largely impersonal. Never-the-less humans are social creatures. We need emotional, personal connection. Experiential marketing fulfills a longing, a need that’s deeply rooted. Once that longing is satiated, a new fill in the blank sounds like a great idea.

Experiential marketing boasts some pretty attractive statistics.

  • 74% of event attendees say that they have a more positive opinion about the company, brand, product or service being promoted after the event. (EMI & Mosaic)
  • 65% of the consumers surveyed said live events helped them have a better understanding of a product or service, vastly surpassing digital efforts and TV advertising as methods of recognizing and learning about a brand. (EventTrack)
  • 65% of brands say that their event and experiential programs are directly related to sales. (EMI & Mosaic)
  • 70% of users become regular customers after an experiential marketing event. (EventTrack)
  • 75% of companies with event budgets between $50-100 million say they expect an ROI of more than 5:1 for live event and experiential programs. (EMI & Mosaic)
  • 98% of users feel more inclined to purchase after attending an activation. (EventTrack)
  • 76% of marketers say their event and experiential marketing initiatives are integrated with their other marketing campaigns. (EventTrack)
  • 79% of US marketers generate sales using event marketing. (Statista)
  • About 34% of consumers surveyed said they would make a post about an experience on their social media pages. (EventTrack)
  • 33% of consumers from the above survey said they would take photos or videos during an event. (EventTrack)
  • 79% of brands say they will execute more event and experiential programs this year compared to last year. (EMI & Mosaic)

If you listen closely and ask the right questions, you’ll see just how much the allure of experiential is beckoning your clients. Our advice, embrace it and bring in a partner to collaborate. You’ll celebrate the outcome.

Ready for experiential?

Let’s chat.

Justin Moss, Owner of The Pineapple Agency

A Guy, a Dream, and the Birth of an Agency

Justin Moss, Owner of The Pineapple Agency

Justin Moss is a dreamer of the day.  A man of action who looks at things with wide eyes.  This, is a great thing.  After all, a man can’t change his surroundings and make his dreams a reality if he can’t see them.  His wide eyes lead him to create things others wouldn’t dare.  A perfect example of Justin’s dreamer mentality can be traced back to his time in Boynton Beach, Florida.

Justin was a man on a mission, conducting business to bring about the next big event.  Moss, along with his business partner Todd Ross, founded Shutdown Productions, a production company that put on live events.  Moss and Ross put together Beyond 2002.  It was billed as “The Ultimate 3 Day Music and Extreme Sports Festival.”  It was an eclectic blend of rock, rap and techno mixed with Extreme Sports.  A crazy, cool blend of hipness and creativity.  Sort of like the guy himself.

Justin wanted to put something together that he would go see.  He wanted fest-goers to have an experience they would never forget.  He wanted to inject his brand of energy and “juice” into this project.  He employed his vast bag of tricks to entertain the crowd, get the job done and leave the audience with a personalized experience.  Unbeknownst to him, this is where The Pineapple Agency was conceived.

Event marketing isn’t just about the event itself.  It’s about the spectacle.  It’s about showcasing the brand.  It’s about seeing the faces of consumers as they step into their own personal experience.  Justin gets that and he owns it.  He wants The Pineapple Agency and its clients to create brand advocates. Fans who will remember their experiences and remember how they experienced them.  It harkens back to Beyond 2002; Giving the people what they want, when they want it.

His experiences give him the credibility and knowledge to know how to move the crowd and keep them coming back for more.  His Ideas are never too wild or outlandish.  Outside the box thinking leads to one-of-a-kind solutions.  They spark the innovation needed to move the needle and shift the conversation to what brands are doing and how they’re doing it. 

The Pineapple Agency delivers big, bold campaigns for brands, inspired by Justin’s big, bold experiences.  The experiences today may be different, but the dream lives on through Justin and Pineapple.

Want to learn more about Justin and his team?

Let’s chat.

Social media on phone in city

The Benefits of Combining Social With An Experiential Marketing Strategy

The business world is more competitive than ever. While the internet facilitates and simplifies many aspects of marketing for consumers, it has also leveled the playing field in a way that’s made it even trickier to stand out from the competition. Furthermore, it’s made consumers even fickler than ever. After all, if they don’t like the messages they’re seeing, they can simply click their way to greener pastures. As a result of these and related phenomena, experiential marketing strategy has quickly become one of the most effective ways to stand out in such a noisy marketplace of goods, services, and brands. When combined with social media, experiential marketing strategy can take your brand to places you’ve never dreamed.

The Benefits of Combining Social With An Experiential Marketing Strategy

On its own, experiential marketing is an excellent way to engage directly with consumers. By giving them a way to actively participate in the evolution of a brand, you simultaneously enhance loyalty and influence their future buying decisions. What’s not to like about that? Nothing, of course! Still, unless you’re a very large, visible brand, getting people involved in your experiential marketing events can be difficult. That’s where social media comes in. The key is engaging consumers where they are, and currently, most of them spend copious amounts of time on social media.

Social Media Marketing Evolved

The marriage of social and experiential has been a winning combination for some time. There have been some pretty great examples in recent years, for example, for Fashion Week 2014, Marc Jacobs set up the Daisy Marc Jacobs Tweet Shop, which only accepted “social currency” as payment. By social currency, the brand meant mentions on major social media channels. Consumers were instructed to tweet about the brand using the hashtag #MJDaisyChain and could then use those posts as currency with which to make purchases from the shop. Talk about a seamless blending of social media and experiential marketing!

Fortunately, you don’t need to have the clout or resources of Marc Jacobs to make the most of experiential and social. A very popular experiential marketing technique is to hold a pop-up event for a brand. It must be engaging enough to compel attendees to want to participate. The question, though, is how to ensure event awareness. The usual tactic is to hold the popup somewhere where there’s guaranteed to be a ton of foot traffic–preferably of the desired target demographic. By using social media to raise awareness, pop-up events have a better shot at being successful and garnering the desired attendance.

In addition to marketing special experiential events, social media can also be used to engage consumers after events to keep your brand top of mind with engaged consumers. For example, consumers can be encouraged to share their experiences on social media in exchange for coupons or other offers after the event. When it comes to experiential, social can truly aid in its effectiveness. We like to think of social as the peanut butter to experiential’s apples. There’s nothing wrong with taking a dip and seeing how sweet it can be for your events!

Want to talk about how The Pineapple Agency can create a dynamic experiential marketing strategy for you?

Let’s chat.

Marketing strategy

5 Stats That Show How Marketing Is Evolving

Raise your hand if you’ve heard that only about one-third of marketers have a documented content strategy, or that B2B brands that blog receive 67 percent more leads. Now, kindly put your hand down. You work in an open office and look mental.

On an average day you see hundreds of marketing stats that are all seemingly the same. We decided to try and share ones that are both relevant and eye-opening.

Below, you’ll find 5 statistics that highlight the complicated and ever-evolving world of marketing. Hint: they all involve content and digital.

  1. 56% of display ads are never seen by humans. (Google 2014)
  2. 45% of marketers still don’t formally evaluate their analytics for quality and accuracy or, even worse, don’t know if they do or not. (VentureBeat 2015)
  3. 74% of readers trust educational content from brands – as long as it doesn’t push a sale. (Kentico 2014)
  4. More than 92% of millennials regularly watch digital video. (eMarketer 2015)
  5. Content marketing will generate $300 billion by 2019. Yes, billion. (Marketing Mag 2015)

At the end of the day, this is just a list of numbers. Our theory is that you should take these statistics and consider them in terms of a much larger story, the story that is your marketing strategy. The marketing industry is rapidly changing, companies need to create a strategy that is measurable, curate content that is relevant and useful for their audiences because digital video is about to take over the game.

Learn more about The Pineapple Agency!

Let’s chat.