Whether it’s an airport, shopping mall, or big box retailer parking lot, outdoor spaces were used in very unconventional ways throughout 2020, to meet the demand from consumers who were eager to connect with brands in person. That demand has only increased for 2021, and people are looking for brands to get creative while providing a safe, but fun experience.
Beyond the challenges of social distancing and COVID fatigue, brands discovered that providing an intimate, personalized experience is more meaningful than ever before. Despite the rise of virtual events, in-person, socially distanced events, will be trending in event marketing and brands have to embrace this reality in order to stay relevant…at least for the foreseeable future.
The reality is – consumers are tired of sitting on Zoom from 9-5 or joining yet another virtual event. Undoubtedly, virtual events have great power and less overhead costs, but they limit brands and participants to one-way communication. A recent study found that 53% of event marketers believe it is more challenging to create unique and memorable experiences for attendees through virtual events in comparison to in-person events and the inability of virtual events to match live engagement. So all of what makes in-person events worth the time, sweat and tears – creative assets, ideation, and proﬁled/trainedbrand ambassadors - goes out the door when the event moves to video screens.
It’s important to think creatively and not limit your brand to only virtual events, especially when everyone else is doing the same thing. Although the timing of inperson experiential events may be uncertain, there will certainly be a future, and brands need to plan for it rather than place marketing on the back burner until things ‘return to normal’ – they won’t. Even with the harshest restrictions, it’s still possible to provide a safe in-person experience and stand out from your competition. Here’s how.
Personalized Experiences. One of the emerging trends in 2021 are local tours with a small team consisting of a Team Lead and 2-3 Brand Ambassadors. With branded vehicles, consumers take notice, giving you the upper hand in a competitive marketplace by adding a unique look to your experiential marketing campaign.
A branded vehicle allows for increased brand awareness while it’s travelling from point A to point B, and it also allows for a safe outdoor experience for consumers. Unlike static billboards, branded vehicles spread awareness and cut through the noise of your industry’s competitive marketplace, whether along one city block or across a multistop, nationwide tour.
A recent research study found that 80% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase when brands offer personalized experiences. In 2021, tours will be more localized, and consist of a branded vehicle making stops in one geographic area (within a province or state).
Plus, with the help of highly trained team of brand ambassadors who will share their passion for your business with consumers, your message is ampliﬁed even further.
The vehicle can also include interactive activities available through QR codes, contactless prizes through online registration, social media CTAs through hashtags, and brand ambassadors who will actively communicate brand messaging - creating a safe and fun experience for consumers!
Blended Experiences. The concept of “Phygital” (the blend of physical and digital experiences) emerged in the event marketing space back in 2007, but consumers were not ready to embrace this concept back then. Although it provided immense possibilities for brands to engage with consumers in both the physical and digital worlds, consumers were not ready for it. Fast-forward to 2020, and both consumers and brands are ready to engage with blended experiences. First and foremost, it must be recognized that consumer mindsets around experiences have shifted as a result of the pandemic. Being in lockdown forced people to become more open to how they experience events. It also became clear how easily digital activities can be integrated positively in everyday life. Recent studies show that consumers and event marketers are favouring hybrid digital and physical experiences to get the best of both worlds. A global research study identiﬁed that 83% of people in North America view experiences as a fundamental piece of who we are as a global culture. Consumers’ acceptance of the hybrid model came from people’s increased desire for in-person experiences, especially since in-person gathers became restricted.
The biggest advantage of hybrid events is the ability to present personalised content based on target demographic, live Q&As, presentations and networking opportunities — which people can access from the comfort of their own home. Such experiences encompass interactivity with virtual delivery and allows for brands to expand their overall audience that they’re able to reach. Now that people have begun adopting virtual experiences, they won't simply disappear when physical events come back.
Karma Casting has the right people for your brand, who will bring the idea behind your campaign to life.
Through the Karma Casting App, we match brands with qualiﬁed candidates from our roster of over 57,000 proﬁled, professional and experienced ambassadors across North America!
Karma Casting matches brands with qualiﬁed candidates with a variety of skill sets. Whether it’s a strong team for a mobile tour, social media inﬂuencers to promote a service or product, certiﬁed delivery drivers, or brand ambassadors to provide tech support your next virtual event – Karma Casting has got you covered!
We know from years of experience, and most importantly during these unprecedented times, that each campaign is unique and often requires candidates with distinctive skill sets, such as those with multilingual capabilities, certiﬁcations (alcohol and/or cannabis), and drivers licenses for various types of vehicles from boats to large trucks. All of this data, plus answers to over 100+ proﬁling questions, are collected from brand ambassadors and stored securely on the Karma Casting App.
If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that people will always need live interactions and experiences. Brand experiences are a fundamental piece of who we are as a global culture, hence, the experiential marketing and live events industry will continue to thrive and evolve in the new world of technology and innovation.
Regardless of the challenges that may come your way during planning or execution stages, Karma Casting is ready to bring your next BIG idea to life with the right people and help you sleep easy at night!