For a long time now, sampling has been an important ingredient in many brands’ launch recipe. It’s still a vital part, but we’re seeing some changes coming in as the strategy evolves.
To be effective in the marketplace and to be successful, especially with discerning consumers, it’s essential that an engaging environment is provided for them to learn about the product before they taste it. Something that we are seeing more and more is the immersive in-store virtual reality experience. This not only elevates a customer’s experience, but it enables you to have a face-to-face interaction with them too.
Take for example the Boursin ‘Sensorium’. This campaign was launched at Westfield Shopping Centres throughout London, and then through a series of county shows and foodie festivals. This ‘Sensorium’ combined live multi-sensory experiences with virtual reality (VR) and a bespoke 360° CGI film. This sounds impressive, but what does it all mean? Consumers put on VR headsets and found themselves flying through the inside of a fridge. This experience was combined with a sound track, moving chairs, cool air, scented fans and product samples. It’s pretty impressive, so take a moment and experience it for yourself:
Boursin ensured that they captured reactions to the experience and used this on social media and targeted digital activity. To extend the experience, a special photo-booth also captured fun shots of people inside the fridge surrounded by Boursin ingredients.
The overall results were extremely positive. When consumers were asked about the event two months afterwards, 98% of consumers were able to recall the experience. But more importantly 36% of people claimed to be buying the brand on a regular and/or monthly basis (this figure was almost double than that prior to the event). Suddenly we’re able to see data that shows a correlation between engagement/experience and sales uplift. But not just immediate sales uplift but valuable uplift represented in brand loyalty and repeated purchase.
With regards to brand visibility and sampling, over 5000 consumers experienced the VR over the 18 days of activity and 86,298 samples were enjoyed by consumers! This is quite a figure and I guess the question to ask yourself is would that many samples have been tried if the campaign had just been a standard sampling campaign.
We will never know for sure, but what we can confirm is that the strategies behind sampling campaigns are getting more and more creative and the way brands are using face-to-face interactions, reward systems and outdoor marketing is definitely an area to watch.
If you are interested in using experiential marketing for your next campaign then contact Rich on 09 930 1811 or email him on email@example.com