How to Create a Sample Strategy for Your Experiential Event that Benefits You and Your Guests
There is simply no better marketing strategy for consumer-packaged goods (CPG) than a unique, fun, and interactive experiential event. For those in the food and beverage industry, you know that nothing can better promote your unique product and introduce guests to the flavor and personality of your brand than letting potential customers try it!
Whether you are promoting a new tropical daiquiri flavor, a delicious artisan bread recipe, or a well-aged whiskey, planning a successful sampling strategy for your next experiential marketing event can increase consumer engagement and boost sales for your brand. Here are a few tips from the pros for creating a sample strategy for your next event.
Tips for a Successful Experiential Sampling Strategy
- Show Your Versality to Reach a Bigger Market – Spotlight the versatility of your product by targeting a different demographic at your sampling event. Wholly Guacamole is a perfect example. They wanted to reach a slightly older crowd than they usually do, so they set up outside of a sporting event rather than a music festival. The new approach included the Guac Stop, where attendees could customize their guacamole sampling with 12 toppings. They also offered interactive events that appealed to their new consumer target like corn hole, giant Jenga, and even a Twitter vending machine that rewarded those who Tweeted about the event with prizes of brand swag.
- Go Where the Fans Are – If you want to reach a particular target audience, location is truly everything. Go where the fans are for an easy-peasy and successful event. Pepsi’s newest line, IZZE Fusions, wanted to make sure every teen around is aware of their new beverage. They made it a point to set up their summer sampling tour, which gave teenagers a taste of augmented reality, at popular teen events like music festivals, malls, and water parks. Giving teens a taste of the product and engaging with them on their level allowed Pepsi to get their attention and present a positive vibe to attract them with digital content and product. The event included interactive play labs, refreshment zones, and immersive experiences like Camp IZZE.
- Keep it Simple and Spotlight Your Product – Sometimes you just have to keep it simple and show them what you’ve got to offer. That’s what High Brew Cold Brew Coffee did for their summer sampling event. Inspired by the brand’s travel/adventure messaging, they hit the road in a refurbished 1950’s coach bus to introduce and let millennials sample their ready-to-drink cold brew coffee. They made stops at trade shows, grocery stores, and festivals; offering a no-frills experience. Aside from a few bar stools and a sampling bar, the only other interactive option they had was an old-fashioned style post card station, where people could send a post card with a BOGO coupon to a friend.
- Change Your Brand’s Perception – If your brand is stuck in a rut and you want to change the way it is viewed by consumers, it’s time to change your brand’s perception. The Glenlivet Scotch had a reputation for being an “old school” drink best enjoyed in stuffy board rooms filled with old gents in leather chairs. To change this perception, their sampling strategy offered a sleek black and natural wood outdoor patio to drive their modern message about Scotch consumption. Popping up at food and wine festivals everywhere, this sampling showed that Scotch, especially when paired with the trending Scotch-inspired craft cocktails, is a good choice for all ages for all occasions.
To ensure your event is successful, be sure to do your research and be clear on the goals you wish to accomplish during your experiential marketing event. By spotlighting the taste and personality of your brand at a fun and interactive event with a clever sampling strategy, you will gain new customers who will help spread the word and help your brand grow, resulting in a win-win event for everyone!