Experiential marketing is a marketing tactic where the customer is given chance to experience the product and resulting emotional reactions makes him purchase the good. In other words this is where the customer is asked to experience some aspect of the product/ sense the product at a free of charge and if s/he likes it they will engage in purchasing the product. Experiential marketing is practiced mostly in the FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods). Typical example of experiential marketing would be FMCG manufacturers employing sales/promotions staff in super markets and malls where they appeal the customer to test their products at a free of charge and purchase only if they are satisfied. In this situation the manufacturer gives the opportunity to the customer to experience the product and resulting emotions will make him purchase the product on the immediately or later on when he is in need.
Experiential marketing is a fairly new term to the marketing vocabulary but underlying concepts were practiced in past and many marketers have benefited. As an example even years ago in small gram shops and candy shops offered their customers to taste the product as an act of motivating them to purchase their products. The success of experiential marketing is based on marketers ability to make the customer sense/experience the positive aspects of the product which will motivate them to purchase.
There are many advantages of engaging in experiential marketing such as:
- It is long term oriented and one such experiential marketing campaign will result in long term cash inflows through high sales level.
- The customers will tend to remember the brand/product for a long time period as they are given the chance to experience the product at free of charge.
- Brand/product awareness increases.
- The failing/declining product can be made a successful product again by launching experiential marketing campaigns which will motivate customer to buy when their experience about the product is renewed.
- The early adopters who are interested in purchasing new products can be attracted quickly as they are given the opportunity to experience new product which will reduce the fear of purchasing new products.
- Company’s goodwill and reputation tend to increase with the positive experience created.
- Allows the company to practice marketing method i.e giving the opportunity for the customer to test the product which can not be done through traditional advertising campaigns through TV, radios and bill boards.
- Differentiate the product from its competitors by offering a product with testing experience.
- Instant customer feedback.
There are disadvantages of experiential marketing such as:
- Product will a be a fail if the campaign produces a negative experience to the customer.
- Determination of positive experience and negative experience is subjective an depends on customer preference.
- Some customers who has a busy schedule would get annoyed and disturbed when they are asked to participate in the experiential marketing campaigns.
- Dishonest Customers would test the product (obtain benefits) and leave as they are if they are not interested.
- Involves a high cost to develop experiential marketing campaign.
- Unethical product testing in way of experiential marketing.