I turned 56 last week. I’ve written for Digiday (the leading source for all things digital and tech in advertising, marketing and publishing) for a year and a half. This is my 100 percent truthful confessional: I don’t know if digital advertising is more or less of a scam than traditional advertising, and I know next to nothing about ad tech. Also, I don’t Snapchat or Instagram.
—Confessions of an analog man in a digital world
Work events are really hit or miss. Let’s be honest: How many times have you found yourself anxiously fidgeting with a paper napkin in the corner of a stuffy networking happy hour?
That’s why I was not only relieved, but also surprised and delighted, when I attended a holiday party that featured a live, interactive version of an arcade game. An entire room had been curated to look like a video game setting, and people were dressed up as characters from it. There was a giant, real-life scoreboard, boppy electronic music, and best of all, there was no tedious small talk.
It wasn’t just another tired work event … it was an experience. And in our line of work, that sort of thing has a name: Experiential marketing.
While a surprising number of people haven’t heard of the concept, it’s kind of a big deal — there’s an entire three-day summit dedicated to it, and 65% of brands that use it say that it positively correlates with sales.
But what is it, exactly? And how has it been used effectively? We found seven of the coolest experiential marketing campaigns that really break down how it works, and how those lessons can be applied to marketers everywhere.