April 2021

Cadbury, M&M’s, Smirnoff & Google: here’s the news that grabbed our attention

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Innovations we foresee based on trends we notice

Rewind to April of 2020 when the experiential landscape took an abrupt pivot as marketing and brand leaders were forced to shift to new communication approaches. Back then, we all wanted to “go back to how things were”. Yet the pivot is partially permanent: the best marketers are now transforming their strategies to be a mixture of the old (majority IRL), with the new (fully VIRTUAL), to become the new normal: HYBRID

This presents opportunities and challenges. So let's get ready to embrace the new normal of the coming hybrid world:

Opportunity: Create experiences that are scalable, across multiple conversations, with more ROI
Challenge: Catering the experience to multiple audiences, yet fitting the variations into a single budget.

Here are two approaches to help support our forward thinking:

1) Focus on a human first approach, meaning projecting yourself to the lived experience of each of your audiences and participants. Think about a sports analogy of a viewer watching on TV vs. a fan in the stadium. The TV-viewer gets replays, stats, different angles, etc while the in-person fan gets the energy of the crowd, the hotdogs, the chance to be on the jumbotron. Both are valid, but each experience is adapted to the medium. Pointing a couple of cameras to the live experience is not sufficient to create a valid remote experience and is probably discrediting to the brand.

2) Budget - So how do you create two completely different experiences in one same budget? To support your virtual efforts, explore longer term CapEx investment where the same live streaming technology can be easily adapted for events of all sizes. Virtual is not going away, so an investment - over time and multiple projects - could be a very smart pitch to your CFO. And for physical, now is the time to stretch our imaginations and use locations that need the attention and can therefore be more budget friendly.

We’re excited for the new normal of Hybrid experiential!

1. Cadbury + Google Maps = Generosity

Cadbury bringing all the feels with a beautiful Virtual Easter Egg Hunt, Head over to AdWeek to see how they are helping to bring us closer, even when we can’t physically be together.

2. M&M's revives messages packs with integrated Spotify playlists

Mars Wrigley adds another dimension to the customer experience, with the help of Spotify. Read how they bridged the physical and digital together in Marketing Dive. #phygital

3. The Royal Shakespeare Company goes hybrid

Is this the future of theatre - where viewers at home can influence what happens during a live show? Head over to Dezeen for the latest on how The Royal Shakespeare Company takes us on a new audience engagement model in the new hybrid-first world.

4. Smirnoff gets us moving for Women's History Month

An online workout series followed by a celebrity-led mixology session? Sign us up! Head over to Marketing Dive to see how Smirnoff’s new campaign is supporting some of those most impacted by the pandemic.

5. Spa cabins and omnichannel experiences - how BHG is fighting to stay relevant

Department stores globally are closing bricks-and-mortar stores in the face of the huge growth of e-commerce and the Covid-19 pandemic. Learn more about how BHG has embarked on a path of continuous reinvention to bring new retail experiences to its customers, over at The Drum.

6. Unforgettable Dining Experiences Designed With Safety in Mind

From a European-inspired hidden alley to a bourbon-fueled homage to Middle-earth, checkout these 11 luxury venues from Robb Report that are both fun and Covid-compliant, while still providing a memorable dining experience.

7. The history and legacy of electronic music with Google

With over 13,000 archival media assets, 200 online exhibitions, and 360 degree tours of museums and studios - Google’s new permanent interactive collection must be seen (and heard!) to be believed. Checkout more at Creative Review.