Telling Stories Through Tech: Experiential Marketing Goes Digital


As sci-fi Arthur C. Clarke once famously opined, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” These days, the ubiquity of technology and our relative comfort with it creates an opportunity to harness this digital “magic” to amplify the stories we share through our experiential marketing.

For some, the idea of deeply integrating the seemingly disparate worlds of digital and tradeshow exhibits may seem like trying to blend oil and water. As Krystal Overmyer observed on the Content Standard blog:

“With users bombarded by digital content across multiple devices each day, real-life experiential marketing becomes something special. This experiential element is part of the reason why real-life experiences like escape rooms and board games have become so popular. It’s one thing to read a story or watch a video clip; it’s an entirely different thing to experience that story yourself.”

So, how do we leverage the integration of recent tech trends?

Digital is a Megaphone for Stories

There are numerous advantages that digital concepts bring to the table — including ROI measurement — but their deployment is most effective when used to substantiate a brand story — the only part of the experience that matters to your audience.

• The immersive merits of virtual reality and augmented reality are self-evident but best applied with serving a narrative that girds that user experience with meaning and emotion. Moreover, people are inclined to share such experiences with others. According to Touchstone Research, 81 percent of those who had a VR experience proceeded to tell their friends about it.

IoT (Internet of Things) can make real-time digital customizations within the attendee experience with data sourced on the spot from a variety of inputs like RFID (radio-frequency identification) readers to ultrasonic “audio beacons” that can silently send relevant messages to your audience within event apps on their smartphones. When someone steps within the footprint of your exhibit, an alert on their phone could be triggered that offers an invitation or incentive to more deeply engage in an aspect of the experience that will have the most resonance for them based on their attendee profile.

• Likewise, both face recognition and smart voice recognition are extending beyond Snapchat filters and Alexa queries. Attendee check-ins can be expedited and virtual concierge services can deliver custom content informed by your audience member’s interactions.

Used effectively, digital tools can mark the difference between simply telling your story and completely immersing your audience within it (and maybe they will experience a little magic too). To learn more about how we can bring the latest digital trends into your tradeshow exhibit experience, connect with us here.

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