Advertising Week


Advertising Week 10th Anniversary Official Guide

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 217 of 333

3 BRAND & CONTENT Don't Just Sponsor an Event The logo-slap alone isn't going to do the job to create engagement with your brand at an event. Sponsorship is just renting someone else's property, and as soon as the shindig is over, your brand will fade from memory. "Brands need to own entertainment, not rent media," Scott explains. "Whenever a client wants to sponsor an event, I say, 'Great. Tell me what our budget is and I'll come back to you with an original ap- proach,'" Scott says. Creating unique experiences gives people a reason to associate your brand with that event. Whenever possible, own your event entirely—that will be far more meaningful and memorable than being a secondary sponsor. Of course, if your brand doesn't have the budget to host a big event, at least create a mini experience that influencers can interact with and share with their followers. It's harder than ever to compete in the world of branded events. It seems like every company, from startups to Fortune 500s, are trying to go viral with their pop-ups and sponsored parties. So why do some shine, while others fall flat? Advertising Week spoke to experiential marketing master Doug Scott, who's worked with clients from Rolex to BMW, about the best ways to make your company's experience unforgettable. Understand Your Audience "Too many times companies focus on the red carpet and celebrities," Scott says. "That doesn't necessarily translate to their target consumer." Instead, companies should work on creating aspirational environments that their target market can actually be a part of. Rolling Stone's Super Bowl party is a great example. The event was held in Houston's Museum of Fine Arts and had Mercedes- Benz sports cars on-site. One model, an all-new 2018 Mercedes-Benz AMG GT, fea- tured a custom design by hip-hop artist Nas and artist Gregory Siff that was projection- mapped onto the car. For attendees at the same event who wanted a photo opp, Budweiser provided a #ThisBudsForYou neon lights photo activa- tion. Then singer Busta Rhymes surprised the crowd with a set, and Big Sean gave a sneak peek of his new songs. The event's unique combination of art, music, and sports attracted influencers that Mercedes and Budweiser wanted to be involved with. Those key people then amplified the experi- ence to their thousands of followers. Make Sure Your Event Embodies Your Brand Essence Your event can be the most incredible experience in the world, but if people don't understand how it connects to your brand, there's no point. "People walk in and think, 'This is amazing. But what does it have to do with this company?'" Scott says. You have to be sure the experience you're creating matches up with your brand's core values. If it doesn't, no mat- ter how trendy it is, ditch it. For example, Johnson & Johnson is a highly respected brand, but it isn't known for being tech- savvy. Therefore, it wouldn't make sense for them to employ a virtual reality experience at one of their activations. If you have trouble figuring out if your event idea is in line with your brand's es- sence, Scott suggests partnering with an event production company that will take 216 BRAND ED

Articles in this issue

view archives of Advertising Week - AWNewYork_OfficialGuide-2017