The entertainment sector is constantly adapting to stay up to date with new trends and technology. What is cool, what is not or what is going to go viral and become the next big thing? Creative industries, marketers, brands and artists all want to capitalise on the next big thing, or for they themselves become it. It is a big undertaking, even with the assistance of a fully equipped marketing team.
What we know is that consumers, and particularly the next generation, are seeking unique and personal experiences, as well as experiences linked to a social cause such as the environment, ethical trade or racial injustices as we have seen of late. Traditional marketing has been replaced with out-of-the-box thinking, questioning the conventions of marketing itself.
One way that creatives can cater to the needs of their audience is through smarter marketing and communications. What this means can vary, but one simple way is through interacting and engaging with your consumer base directly. To achieve this, marketers and event planners alike are constantly looking for new ways to cultivate deeper and personal connections between the brand and their target audience: enter the realm of ‘experiential marketing’.
What is experiential marketing?
Experiential marketing, as the name suggests, is a style of marketing that provides the customer with an experience. “The key is creating an experience that stimulates an emotional connection and reinforces the essence of the brand.” (ANA) In fact, experiential marketing is one of the many subsets of the oft used marketing term of ‘brand activation’.
Through “brand activation” creatives can essentially “activate” their brand to promote, for example, their latest campaign or product launch. It helps brands stay relevant and test out new ideas amongst their targeted demographic. It can take many forms such as giving out free merchandise, samples or hosting an event. Indeed, according to HubSpot, brand activations are one-off, in-person events, experiences, and interactions that forge lasting emotional connections between a brand and their target audience.
The outcome is not always lead generation, but growing awareness and building loyalty. After leaving the activation, customers should come away with a positive or reinforced feeling towards the brand, together with an understanding of their values, for example, the green agenda.
Experiential marketing x Sustainability: the collab
Energy Floors’ main goal is to raise awareness about the energy transition and we aim to do this in the most entertaining way possible. We work with a global pool of event marketers and creative agencies such as GUC Amsterdam, CIRC and Liganova (to name a few) supporting them in delivering unique and creative activations for their clients and their brands such as Adidas, Volkswagen and Heineken who want to include a fun feature for the customers, and at the same time incorporate their values.
Here are three ways our floors have supported marketers to create personal connections with their customers:
1. DAYBREAKER Amsterdam | Give back to nature
DAYBREAKER is a morning dance community of 500,000+ members in 28 cities around the world. They inspire humans to start their day unlike any other — by waking up and dancing in iconic spaces, first thing in the morning. In 2020, they held a (Give) Back to Nature event at the iconic CIRCL Amsterdam. The event launched the beginning of the Dutch Circular Economy week with an aim to have a party with zero C02 emissions. Our sustainable dancefloor, The Dancer, was one of the key elements used to obtain that goal!
The Dancer was used to host a yoga class in the morning, and then the ultimate dance party (still) in the morning with an array of performances. In total, the daybreakers generated 60,000 joules of energy! And for every ticket sold, DAYBREAKER planted a tree in Costa Rica.
2. Heineken House at Coachella 2016 | Power the party
Dutch beer company, Heineken is one of the many sponsors of Coachella – the annual music and arts Festival held in Indio, California. In 2016, we supported their activation with our kinetic energy floor.
Located in The Terrace section of the festival, home to local and sustainable food & beverage and other like-minded activities, Heineken set up shop and built its Heineken House. The location was no coincidence as one of the main features of their activation was our sustainable dancefloor. Festival-goers lit up the House by dancing on our Energy Floor which transformed the energy into electricity to power the LED lights on the dancefloors, as well as the House’s light beams. A live screen behind the DJ booth displayed a graphic of a large battery meter allowing the dancers to see how much energy they had generated.
3. Adidas | Energy Challenge
For the Boston Marathon we developed an activation for Adidas. After collecting their bib-number and running pack, runners were invited to join the Adidas Energy Challenge to win a new pair of Ultra Boost sneakers.
The aim was to generate as much energy as possible by running as fast as they could on 4 of our energy modules to unleash the Boost Energy in their shoes. When the 30 seconds were up, their Boost Energy Score was revealed on a real-time leader board showcasing the top 10 ranking participants.
Across 3 days, 600 people joined the challenge and the activation helped generate interest and excitement and, as we understand it, drive footwear sales which was the ultimate goal of the client.