branding

Jack Daniels Breaks New Social Media Sharing Records

In the social media world, success only comes when your message is spread. Sharing of that message, rather than advertising it directly, is what drives most of the views to your ad or other content. This makes it so that the immediate goal of most social media campaigns is to get shares.

Social media sharing comes under many names, most of which depend on the platform in question. On Facebook, you want "likes." If it's Twitter, you're looking for "retweets." Other platforms use different names, but each has some method of sharing that is far better than the platform's other options.

Recently, Jack Daniels nailed this aspect of social media marketing so well that it broke its prior records for shares. Here's what they did:

Set Up an Entire Themed Venue

In the case of Jack Daniels, this was not a bar or distillery, but instead, a motel. "Motel No. 7," to be exact. Visitors "checked in" at the front desk and then were sent through a series of rooms and other areas each with their own themes. In these areas, 25 distinct "photo shareable" attractions were set up. These put the visitors into scenes that they would naturally want to post on their social media accounts. One example was a hair salon where visitors picked their styles by spinning a wheel-of-fortune type selector. It was almost instinctual for the people to post these eye-catching scenes.

Included Themed Peripherals

One such peripheral was the "Bung" donut shop. The donuts were infused with whiskey, but the old-timey set were what made it so photogenic.

A few aspects of the extravaganza were more directly related to the Jack Daniels brand and its actual product. There was a limited-seating discussion on whiskey-making by one of its master distillers, a history area focusing on music photographer Jim Marshall (who is connected to the brand), and Kevin the Barrel Maker who demonstrated his craft. This cemented the association between the Jack Daniels band and the event.

Pre-Event Advertising

Some advertising was still used. After all, a seed group of people have to see an event before they can start sharing its highlights. Jack Daniels generated hype by having two characters from the event promote it over social media channels. It also had a pre-event extravaganza including DJs, bands, and even a pillow fight. This drew people to come in and see the rest.

If you're looking for a venue that can be configured to meet the needs of your event in Miami, check out Soho Studios. We can offer up to 70,000 square feet of space to meet your needs.

Once Again, SOBEWFF Delights its Guests

The South Beach Wine & Food Festival, more commonly known to its fans as the SOBEWFF, celebrated its 16th anniversary in Miami this past weekend. Even though the event just ended, we can still look to it to see this year's top trends and adapt them for our own events in the upcoming months. Here are some of the things that took the spotlight:

Tastings and Demonstrations

This year's tastings didn't stop with serving up food to curious attendees. The Grand Tastings were all accompanied by demonstrations by KitchenAid so people could see how to make the dishes at home. Of course, doing so would presumably involve buying some KitchenAid products. These were integral to the demonstrations, and many people who view such demos come to the feeling that they have to have the items shown within them. Needless to say, that's the plan.

Intimate Dinners Hosted by Well-Known People

While the big A-listers of Hollywood weren't hosting dinners, SOBEWFF did get some notable personalities to do the honors. Each dinner featured a different person or group who, for the most part, are known for their food or wine expertise. This type of dinner has been trending for a few years now, and many people are fans. Importantly, the term "intimate" doesn't refer to the sort of dinner that caters to lovebirds. Instead, it's a chance to talk to the hosts in a setting that is far more personable, or intimate, than the typical stage-to-audience speech setup.

Fitness Events

Companies have tried to make fitness into a trend for years, but it is now finally catching on. Two "Buddhas and Bellinis" events happened over the course of SOBEWFF and drew plenty of people to the yoga-themed mass classes. Other fitness-related events were geared toward families, and some included healthy cooking. It's clear that people are still interested in fitness and healthy food, and that the longstanding association between these things and deprivation dieting is continuing to fade.

Celebrity Chef Talks and Signings

A couple of decades ago, the very idea of a celebrity chef was all but unheard-of. Now, there are several making the rounds. People always love to get closer to celebrities, so it was a hit for SOBEWFF to bring in well-known chefs and home experts. The topics were highly varied, with one on the future of restaurant operations on all sizes and another that claimed that political discussion outright belongs at the dinner table.

While it's hard to match the scale of a festival like SOBEWFF, you can make your event a big hit by using it for inspiration. The other thing you need is a great venue. Try our flexible 70,000 square foot space here at Soho Studio for your own Miami extravaganza.

Experiential Marketing 101: Why Audi Decided to Rebrand from the Inside Out

Audi’s experiential marketers are on a roll, and they’re revamping the brand’s image from the ground up. From Audi’s A3 launch events to its CES exhibit floor, its high focus on consumer marketing has been batting a thousand. It’s made an appearance in Miami’s Wynwood, Alcatraz and even at a Major League Soccer sponsorship event. From head to toe, Audi has gotten a high-adrenaline makeover.

Rebuilding a Brand

Audi didn’t necessarily need a solid rebranding initiative, but its recent live engagements have revitalized the age-old mantra of, “If you can strategize it, it’ll work.” A key difference between Audi’s newest marketing maneuvers and competitive brands is its high focus on in-the-moment action.

Audi’s experiential team hasn’t pulled any punches. While it’s previously used typical auto shows to launch new vehicle reveals, it’s prioritized the consumer experience across various markets with hands-on track introductions. Closed-course programs were at the foundation of Audi’s grand scheme, powering later driving experiences with a solid history, alone.

That isn’t to say Audi’s experiential marketing is strapped for ideas, either. Rather, Audi’s senior manager of events and experiential marketing, Erin Keating, placed a high focus on property exposure, product coordination and—of course—global appeal.

Power to the Marketers: Revitalizing with Engaging Experiences

Audi’s experiential marketing department, powered by incredible minds and practical solutions, doubled its staff. Now sitting at 10 innovative leaders, it exists as a comprehensive power-house consisting of a VIP and influencer specialist, a motorsports manager, a European product delivery coordinator and more. Audi’s experiential outreach team isn’t new to the game, and they’ve put incredible detail into revamping the Audi Driving Experience.

The Audi Driving Experience, itself, is Audi’s rebranding platform—based upon comprehensive exposure campaigns, local launch events and trade shows. A big part of Audi’s experiential rebranding effort is its regional sponsorships. Already, the brand has activated two national sports entities, obtaining support from both Major League Soccer and the U.S. Ski Team.

Technology Outreach

In a surprising move, Audi recently solidified its action-packed experiential marketing campaign with a high degree of technological aestheticism. Audi’s Dome of Quattro, for example, debuted at the Denver International Airport. The high-definition, 30-foot tall techno dome featured a hospitality lounge, Audi’s sleek design, a curved bar and a massive digital screen presenting documentaries about Le mans and the U.S. Ski Team.

The technological angle is telling, because immersive tech, itself, is becoming synonymous with lifestyle and sports marketing. Free Wi-Fi goes a long way, especially when it’s sued to present a gigantic digital tunnel video. Make no mistake: Audi’s marketing tactics are rising quickly, and they’re only getting better. When equipped with a solid experiential marketing team, brands have incredible potential.

How Netflix Created A Gilmore Girls Pop-Up Program with Local Coffee Shops

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If you are a planner and looking for a creative idea for a future event, look no further than Netflix's Gilmore Girls pop-up program. Netflix signed up more than 200 coffee shops for its unique Gilmore Girls event. The purpose of this pop-up program was to spike viewership for the remake of the Gilmore Girls series. The cult classic was revived on Netflix on October 5. Later this month, Netflix will release “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life” that takes an in-depth look at each of the series' main characters in segmented fashion. About Netflix's Gilmore Girls Pop-up Program

Netflix worked with Allied Experiential to recruit over 200 cafes throughout the United States for its pop-up program. The entertainment company redesigned each coffee shop into the Gilmore Girls' hangout of Luke's Diner. Netflix personnel hand-picked specific coffee shops based on strategic location, right down to the neighborhoods in which these sites are situated. The aim was to connect with those who are most likely to watch the Gilmore Girls series as well as young professionals. Netflix gurus believe that those between the ages of 20 and 30 are the target demographic for the remake of Gilmore Girls as these individuals were most likely to have enjoyed the series during its seven year run in the early 2000s.

Why the Gilmore Girls Pop-up Program Succeeded

The Gilmore Girls pop-up program was scheduled for what the company refers to as “Gilmoreversary”. This is the date that the series first aired. The event was a smashing success, attracting hundreds of fans at nearly each participating coffee shop. Some cafes reported that fan interest was so high that pop-up goers spilled out onto the street. Netflix equipped each cafe with signs, coffee mug sleeves with Gilmore Girls branding and a baseball cap/flannel shirt combination for staff. Netflix even went as far as providing money to the coffee shops for free java between the hours of 7 AM and Noon. Each coffee shop was also provided with Gilmore Girls branded aprons and shirts to sell to pop-up attendees.

It is clear that Netflix went all out with this event. The online streaming service even went as far as sending one of the series' actors, Scott Patterson, out to the pop-up at Luke's Diner in Beverly Hills. Part of the reason for the event's success is the fact that Netflix took the extra step of advising each coffee shop with specific guidelines as to how they should promote the pop-up through social media channels. Gilmore Girls ascended to the number three trending Twitter topic on the day of the pop-up. Netflix's Gilmore Girls pop-up is an example of the type of detailed planning and creativity that every planner can draw inspiration from for future events.

Looking for a venue for your own experiential marketing event?  We have multiple event spaces that are perfect for events of various sizes, so you can be sure that you can fit any size crowd inside. Whether you're planning one event or a multi-venue tour, make sure one of your stops is at Soho Studios!  Contact us today to get started.

Why Beam Suntory Wants to Educate its Consumers

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Beam Suntory has a good reputation, and it’s been busy redefining its marketing strategies. Mixing the consumer’s love for its time-tested-and-true spirit with a little creativity, the U.S. bourbon company created new categories of entertainment and education.

All About the Pop-Up Shop

The brand camped out in John F. Kennedy International Airport, offering providers an unforgettable experience via a wonderful taste campaign. Its Bourbon Legends pop-up in Terminal 4 wasn’t simply a tasting stand. It was an entire experience.

Beam Suntory’s Bourbon Legends program isn’t new, either. It debuted at John F. Kennedy Airport last fall, highlighting the brand’s massive bourbon collection. Among these were its much-loved Maker’s Mark and Jim Beam. The sampling campaign was successful—earning a spot in August for a reboot.

A Record-Number Success

Where pop-up stands are concerned, Beam Suntory couldn’t have struck closer to gold. It hit the airport’s arrival and departure sweet spot, engaging the location’s record-high visitation numbers. Both international and domestic travelers were exposed to the pop-up stand, highlighting their 2016 trips with bourbon-fueled fun.

Much of Beam Suntory’s success is due to its positioning. Within an airport space, passerby have time. More importantly, they have time to kill. Airport denizens may be a hustled bunch, but they’re constantly ready to stop, shop and explore new brand opportunities.

The One-On-One Education Counter

Packed with aged barrels, classic designs and age-old attributions to bourbon culture, Beam Suntory’s pop-up space prioritized a rustic vibe encasing fantastic artwork. Here, the brand’s 221 years of success was the focus. Informing customers about its bourbon collection’s best ingredients, Beam Suntory created an education counter built to last. The “mini master classes,” as they were called, gave brand viewers the freedom needed to explore everything Beam Suntory. The event’s own Bourbon Legends pocket handbook was given out, helping bourbon-lovers with product information.

Of course, no product promotion is without purchasing options. Beam Suntory created a small gift program—a leather bottle protector giveaway—to visitors spending over $75 in the terminal’s pop-up shop.

A Classic Approach to a Classic Brand

Beam Suntory is well-received by its audience. It’s repeatedly been aligned with America’s best bourbon options, and its adherence to classic recipes certainly gives it a leg up in today’s marketing world.

An American airport location is fitting, then, to promote the brand’s constant ability to please bourbon connoisseurs. Sometimes, a truly American experience must take place in a truly American destination. One of the more creative pop-up locations chosen by liquor providers, JFK Airport certainly promoted a positive sales atmosphere. Whether it was the wood paneling or 2016’s dizzying travel months, the brand hit success in little to no time at all.

If your company is looking for a venue for its own experiential marketing event, check out our studio spaces.  Our multiple event spaces are perfect for events of various sizes, so you can be sure that you can fit any size crowd inside. Whether you're planning one event or a multi-venue tour, make sure one of your stops is at Soho Studios!

Frisk Clean Breath Launches Brutally Honest Breath Meter

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Not every experiential marketing event involves getting thousands of people together in one spot. The latest campaign from Frisk Clean Breath, a maker of breath mints, chose to go where people already are. It set up a machine in shopping malls and similar venues that promised to be "brutally honest" about people's breath. The machine was appropriately called Frisk, the Brutally Honest Breath Meter. Passers-by soon noticed the machines and breathed into the tube sticking out of the front. When they did, the machine responded with something extremely unexpected for a marketing campaign: Insults! Every response colorfully insulted the user's breath. It would light up words like "your breath is so bad that your toothbrush mistakes itself for a toilet brush." Then, it would dispense anywhere from a few to a huge amount of Clean Breath Mints. As it did this, it promised that the mints would keep the person's breath fresh for at least two hours.

The reactions of the people who got these analyses typically involved some sort of surprised exclamation. This got even more passers-by to stop and see what was going on. Soon, they too would blow into the machine and get their own brutally honest assessments. As this happened, Frisk recorded the reactions.

Once the company had enough reactions collected, it picked out the best ones. Then it made a TV commercial that has been called one of the best of the year. This ad showed what the machine said, how the people reacted to it, and how many mints it dispensed. In one case, it dispensed so many that it looked like the person had won a decent-sized slot machine jackpot – that was paid in mints!

Like other great experiential marketing campaigns, this one by Frisk is innovative, unexpected, and contains more than one phase. The first phase lets regular people directly experience the product in an unforgettable way. Then, the second phase shows the results in a way that makes viewers feel like they were almost a part of the original event. The combination is far more exciting than traditional advertising, which has become a bore due to overexposure. People remember experiential advertising in part because it is so different than the usual.

While this campaign didn't use a specific private venue, many do. If you're looking for a place to hold a big marketing extravaganza, look no further than Soho Studios in Miami. Soho has up to 70,000 square feet of space – enough room to fit a huge crowd under its roof. Contact us today to set up a reservation or learn how we can cater to your specific event.

KBY Designs Livens Up the Dead Sea

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When a special event needs to be taken to the very top level of specialness, KBY Designs pulls out all the stops. One recent example of their work was a beach party, which was set up to show potential customers what they could do. What made it so different from other such parties? The first difference was its location on the banks of the Dead Sea. What happened next, however, is what made it so special. Ten Truckloads of Sand Start Things Off

Bringing sand to a beach may seem strange to those who don't live near water, but it's actually basic preparation in many areas. The sand naturally found near water is often more like gravel, is muddy, or has other undesirable traits. Covering it up with a better grade of sand is often the solution. KBY Designs, however, wasn't satisfied with a small patch of improved beach. They used 10 truckloads' worth of good sand to make sure that the entire planned space would look and feel beautiful.

No Mere Volleyball Net for This Party

Since this was a high-end event, the right trappings had to be brought in. Some of the added accouterments included an eatery under an open-sided tent, outdoor market-style plants, fruits, and other themed items, market umbrellas to keep the people cool, pails of Dead Sea mud for children to play with, and plenty of services. The company worked with a multitude of subcontractors to make sure everything went off perfectly. These subcontractors included caterers, bar service providers, and a company that provides child-watching services for events.

The catering was especially notable. Instead of bringing in pre-cooked food on trucks, it brought in a big tabun oven and cooked everything on the spot. Fresh fruits, vegetables, and breads were also displayed around this stand and were used in the meals. In keeping with the overall theme, the food was of a light Mediterranean style.

The Possibilities Are Endless

This is just one example of how a special event can be made unforgettable, and how it can be used to truly show potential customers a party planner's capabilities. The key is to make such an event match the tastes of the target market and then do it in truly grand style. Word will quickly get out, greatly increasing the memorability of the brand. After it's over, consider releasing a highlight reel as an advertisement so more people know how well the company fits their interests.

If you're looking for a place to hold an experiential marketing event that doesn't require traveling to the Dead Sea, check out our space at Soho Studios. We make it easy to set up the perfect experience.

The Pop-Up and the Consumer Experience

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One of the latest trends in experiential marketing are pop-up shops. But they're not merely a fad. Rather they're one of the most effective ways to promote brands. Here's a few examples of how companies have used pop-up shops to create effective experiential marketing campaigns, as well as the advantages of how these events can help individual businesses.

Why Give it Away, When People Will Pay

When Organic Valley sought to create an event to let consumers know more about their organic half and half cream, the choice to serve coffee seemed obvious, as nothing goes better with half and half than coffee. But while coffee shops across the country give away the half and half, they do charge for the coffee. So they planned a twist, they would charge visitors $2 for the half and half, and give the coffee away for free. While if anyone asked, they'd have gladly given samples of the half and half, no one complained at the $2 charge. Instead, they were too busy enjoying themselves at the two day pop-up cafe in NYC's Nolita neighborhood, which included hosting by food stylist and writer Sweet Paul, and included talks from organic farmer Gerrit van Tol about organic farming and cows.

Advantages

Pop-up shops aren't so much about turning a profit as they are about creating brand awareness and education. But while giving samples can be great marketing, charging for a product at a pop-up sends the message that not only is your item worth paying for, it links the buying of the item with a fun experience. When you give a sample, you reach a potential customer who may choose to buy your product down the road, but when a person pays for your product at a fun event, you've just gotten a new customer, one who has positive associations with your brand from the point of sale.

Changing Perceptions

Women feeling ashamed of their monthly periods is becoming a thing of the past, and who better to take notice than U by Kotex. Inspired by a NYC college student's blog post, U by Kotex chose to launch their Period Project Campaign with The Period Shop for three days on New York's Fifth Avenue. Selling home goods, accessories and beauty products by female artisans, and of course U by Kotex products, the shop also had a truth booth featuring women talking about their period. The hip shop was the perfect place to reach the target audience of savvy young women, but U by Kotex loved the broad appeal of the shop and its contribution to making everyone comfortable with the topic of a women's period.

For Chobani, the largest seller of Greek yogurt in the United States, expanding their customer base isn't about competing against other brands so much as it is about changing the habits of their customers. Europeans eat a much larger volume of yogurt annually than Americans, and yogurt is a regular part of all three meals, while Americans limit their yogurt consumption to breakfast. By introducing Americans to all the possibilities in creating savory yogurt dishes, Chobani is confident it can expand much further than its already impressive growth. There's really no better way to do that than experiential marketing, which Chobani knows well; in addition to a permanent NYC flagship café, the company hosts events 52 weeks out of the year. Getting people to try yogurt in entirely new ways is the surest way to grow the company, and pop-up shops are an integral part of Chobani's marketing plan.

Advantages

Getting people to change their perceptions and habits is hard work for any brand, and it's definitely best done using a "show don't tell" model. Allowing consumers to experience these different ways of doing things first-hand in the fun environment of a pop-up shop is the surest way to achieve success.

Capitalizing on Place

Boohoo.com, a major online fashion retailer in the UK, chose to host a two week pop-up shop in Los Angeles' trendy Westwood neighborhood. With a music festival theme and a location close to UCLA which represents its female college student target demographic, the choice of location served two purposes. It helped expand into a new market as Boohoo.com seeks to have a larger presence amongst American buyers, and it did so strategically, as the brand is highly influenced by Southern California style, and felt there was no better place to begin its expansion to the US. What is more, by being in Westwood and using a west coast music festival theme, the brand was able to capitalize on these things for marketing far beyond the pop-up. In using social media and broadcasting the event to their followers, the brand becomes associated with the hip neighborhood and an authentic West Coast vibe.

Advantages

By strategically using place, brands are able to connect with consumers on the most intimate level, from inside the communities where they live. Additionally, companies can use the associations of a place, whether it be a hip neighborhood or one that will best resonate with their target audience, to create a stronger brand. Our event spaces, at the heart of Miami's Arts District, are the perfect place for hosting any kind of pop-up shop. Give us a call to learn more about how your brand can most benefit from a pop-up shop.

Audi Presents LED Art Exhibit at New York City Club

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Since inventing LED daytime running lights back in 2005, Audi has been at the forefront of LED technology. With this achievement in mind, the company recently sponsored a truly unique art installation entitled Bold Notion: Art of Innovation. The exhibit, created by New York artist Matthew Schreiber, is built around the physical structure and geometry of one of New York City's most elite clubs, CORE:club. In this method, Schreiber uses LED lights to transform an ordinary building to interactive exhibition in a modern and playful way . The lights crosshatch through entryways, hallways, and walls, each one tailored specifically around the structure of the building to create a spectacle for the eye. To accomplish this feat, he turned off all of the main lights in the building to give more focus to his red lasers.

The design features over 400 individual diode lasers which shoot out across the space, challenging viewers to become part of the artwork as they move about the room. According to Schreiber, he intended for the lights to be daunting at first as a challenge to those who wanted to enter. His inspiration for the piece centered around his desire for attendees to be scanned when they entered the exhibit. In this way, he hopes people attending should feel slightly uneasy at first, as if they are not welcome, because this represents the clubs exclusivity as well as a challenge they must overcome.

In order to promote the exhibit, CORE: club held a public reception for the first time in their history, allowing non-members to peruse the art. The event included vaporized cocktails and drinks with LED ice cubes to match the theme of the evening. Finally, Schreiber also was available for an hour long question and answer session to inform the audience about his work and its purpose. Finally, a dinner was held that offered several courses of fine delicacies to choose from.

This exhibit is actually the seventh of its kind to be hosted by CORE:club. The Bold Notion series is committed to offering artists a space to unleash their creativity in unusual ways, much like Soho Studies. Previous events have included paintings, application of light, and even iconography.

CORE:club is not the only venue that can offer such a versatile space for exhibits. Ready to host your own unique event in a space that can be matched to your needs? Consider renting our Pavilion, Armory, or Parliament studios. For more information, do not hesitate to contact us.

 

Sources: www.audi.com, www.thecoreclub.com