This post is sponsored by INX.
In today’s always-on online world, it is a no-brainer for brands to adopt a digital-first marketing strategy. While digital and social channels do provide a wider reach for brands, retaining customer attention is a big challenge in an increasingly cluttered online world.
A plethora of brands ranging from local labels to multinational corporations, and even government organisations, find themselves vying for limited consumer attention online. However, in doing so, they often overlook the opportunities and benefits in connecting with their audiences in the real world.
Forging offline connections through brand activation
Relying on the speed and reach of online campaigns is a temptation that can be hard to resist. As a result, brands often miss out on opportunities to create differentiation through offline experiences. Rather than approaching experiential marketing as an expensive flash in the pan, brands should shift perspectives and see this as an opportunity to build meaningful customer relationships that can reap long-term rewards.
Through brand activations, audiences can experience what brands have to offer first-hand. There are numerous avenues that can help drive customer perceptions such as interactive events, pop-ups, and immersive installations that turn stories into real-world experiences.
Brand activation experts such as INX can provide that unique approach to such activations. From conceptualisation and campaign promotions to live execution and post-event publicity, a multi-disciplined agency such as INX tailors its services to help brands raise audience engagement and build a sustainable presence. When harnessed properly, brand activation and experiential marketing are powerful tools that offer a different dimension to traditional marketing methods.
When it comes to winning customers’ attention in experiential marketing, brands should take note of three key aspects:
Reimagining physical touch-points
Physical brand touch-points such as stores and pop-ups go beyond being mere spaces for product displays and purchase transactions. The use of pop-ups widens the scope for brands to get creative. They can delight their audiences with unique and personalised experiences, which can enhance the overall customer journey and even entice new customers to become brand loyalists.
By maximising physical touch-points in this manner, a brand can earn valuable customer attention and bring alive the brand’s experience.
Creating resonating experiences
High-quality and interactive brand activation can help brands connect with audiences by building on empathetic experiences that people can relate to. By tapping on shared experiences, such activations help leave a long-lasting impression in consumers’ minds.
In 2022, INX worked with ADK Connect Singapore and Singapore’s Central Narcotics Bureau for their annual DrugFreeSG campaign to raise awareness about the effects of drugs on people, families and society.
INX installed a pop-up at Suntec City from 26 June to 3 July – an interactive exhibition to deliver the government’s anti-drug message in a meaningful manner. This was done through two immersive rooms, specially built to give visitors a realistic multi-sensory experience that simulated the negative effects of drugs on the human body such as dizziness and a lack of direction.
The exhibition earned extensive coverage from local media such as The Straits Times and Youthopia for its ability to generate curiosity amongst unaware onlookers.
The DrugFreeSG pop-up.
Crafting an omni-channel strategy
Brand activation agencies’ expertise also extends beyond temporary structures and short-term campaigns. INX has a proven track record of collaborating with agency partners to conceptualise and execute successful omni-channel activations for milestone events such as store openings and launches.
A recent instance was the launch of Timezone’s largest venue in Singapore at Orchard Xchange in April 2023, where INX partnered with public relations agency (Omnicom Public Relations Group) for the launch event.
They successfully drove buzz through the pre-launch audience engagement through to the successful conceptualisation of the official launch activities and event line-up. Additionally, well-placed out-of-home advertising in the venue’s vicinity was the icing on the cake, driving attention and footfall to the new Timezone venue.
The Timezone Orchard Xchange launch event.
As a result, the launch activation garnered impressive media attention, with news of the launch amplified on both mainstream and social media. Beyond the big bang of the grand opening, INX as a brand activation partner, also helped to position Timezone as a one-of-a-kind social and entertainment venue in the heart of the city, capturing the interest and brand preference of consumers long after the launch event was completed.
Indeed, there’s no better way to tell a brand story than by enabling people to see it come to life.
As brand activation gets bigger and bolder, start-ups and young brands speculate whether experiential marketing is too expensive a tool. Gary Neo, senior account director at INX, however, alleviates potential concerns, saying: “One of the biggest advantages of modern brand activation is the room for versatility, which makes it well-suited to all budgets.
“Apart from being an effective sales driver that delivers a high return on investment, the primary focus is to help brands capture and retain waning audience attention by engaging them in long-term meaningful relationships through shared experiences.”
INX’s range of versatile configurations such as mobile advertising vehicles and interactive digital media offer a modernised experience that is forward-looking, but yet retains the benefits of traditional advertising methods. Its wide breadth of solutions also include conference management, audio-visual and lighting management, fabrication and print, and mobile advertising.
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