Experiencing Brands through Technology
Experiential marketing creates an emotional and memorable connection between brand and consumer to influence consumer purchases. In the past, this strategy included designing experiences which involved giving out free beers at organized parties or giving out a new pair of basketball player affiliated shoes to who ever could jump up to the shoes at a ten foot mark. The ongoing trend from the last few years, however, has been to introduce interactive technology into the mix.
Unlock the 007 in you – Coca Cola
Before the premiere of the latest James Bond movie, Skyfall, sponsor Coca-Cola launched an experiential marketing campaign called Unlock the 007 in You in Antwerp’s Central Station. First they planted an interactive Coca Cola vending machine, with an unassuming violinist busker standing nearby. Once a bottle of the refreshing beverage was purchased, the violinist would play the 007 theme song. The vending machine then asked the participant to enter their name, challenging them to head to Platform Six within 70 seconds to “unlock the 007” in them.
The installation encouraged participants to race against time and obstacles through the train station, Double O Agent-style, to a destination where the opportunity to win exclusive Skyfall screening tickets awaited them. According to Creative Review, approximately 70 people ran for tickets. The experience didn’t stop at the station though, the agency created a video to share on throughout social media – specifically on YouTube – to act as an ongoing commercial, to share the experience with others and to create a buzz around the brand. From YouTube statistics we can see that since this marketing campaign was launched and documented on YouTube almost 11 million people have watched the video (this adds up to a culminating total time watched of 31 years!). Over 64,000 people have liked it and the video has supported more than 43,000 shares.
Arctic Home – Coca Cola and WWF
In January of last year, Coca Cola teamed up with World Wildlife Federation at the Science Museum in London, to launch Arctic Home, a campaign focusing on raising both awareness and funds to conserve the Arctic and the polar bears home. A polar bear mom and her cubs have been the face of the Coca Cola brand for a long time, so this was a perfect opportunity to create an authentic, emotional connection with consumers.
A large section of the Science Museum of London was set up to support augmented reality – a technology that superimposes a computer-generated image on a user’s view of the real world – featuring the two small cubs and mother bear playing on ice and swimming in water. The visuals looked so real, that viewers were left in awe and actually felt like they were capable of approaching and touching the animals. Augmented reality was a useful strategy to raise awareness about these endangered species for both adults and children, they had the next best experience aside from actually viewing these animals in their wild habitat. Since the launch of the documentation on YouTube it has been watched and liked approximately 39K and 350 times (respectively).
Scan your Passport – Molson Canadian
In the summer of 2013, Molson Canadian toured a bright red beer fridge around Europe. It would only open if a Canadian passport was inserted into it. The fridge quickly went viral as it quenched the thirsts of Canadian travellers and placed all others in a pit of jealousy — which didn’t last long, as Canadians are a generous sort, known for being nice people.
This fridge not only advertised this brand of beer to the world but embedded an experience in the hearts of all participants and nostalgia to the Canadian travellers. The beer fridge made an appearance at the Sochi 2014 Olympic games, which made it easy for our Olympians to relax after their competitions. Since launching the documentation on YouTube on June 21st of 2013, over 2.5 million people have viewed the experience and almost 5K have liked it, which made Molson Canadian – Scan your Passport an extremely successful campaign!
I find that people are now more comfortable with communicating with technology than with other people, what do you think?
If you were approached in the train station by a person asking if you wanted to run through to another platform in 70 seconds would you do it, or would you respond to a vending machine more easily?
What about if someone who worked with Coca-Cola tried talking to you about the dangers of climate change for polar bears, would your reaction be as strong?
Now try replacing the beer fridge with a person giving out free beer to only Canadians, is the experience the same or is Molson Canadian just rude?