It’s 2022, do Nigerian brands still need brand activation? Well, today’s market is saturated with endless competitors, and there’s no denying the fact that the customers have become more knowledgeable than before.
This, among other reasons, is why growing one’s business now requires the knowledge of brand activation. And unless your brand is St. Louis sugar, you will need something unique and out of the box to stand out from the crowd.
So, What is Brand Activation?
Brand Activation is the art of driving consumers to action through brand-sponsored interaction and experiences. It’s about bringing brands to life and forming long-term emotional connections with consumers.
The ultimate goal of brand activation is to attract, engage, and motivate consumers at various points along the path to purchase.
In addition, it can be said to be an active and emotive type of marketing usually carried out in the form of a campaign, event, interaction, or experience to induce customer action and build a bi-directional relationship between the brand and the customer. And active marketing entails conscious participation by a company to promote its brand.
Objectives of Brand Activation
The objective of brand activation is to form an emotional connection between audience and brand. It can take many forms and make use of multiple channels.
But no matter the method, the objectives remain the same: drive action, inspire engagement, and build long-term customer relationships.
Some Popular Types of Brand Activation Campaigns
- Experimental Events
Experiential Marketing (XM) is used by global brands to intercept consumers and emotionally engage with them on a one-on-one personal level. Events are tactics designed to give people the opportunity to interface with a product, engage in a dialogue with experts, and feel more connected with a brand.
It is important to know that brands will employ an external vendor to help them achieve these tactics,
in most cases. And the purpose is to reach people on multiple personal levels (emotional, rational, psychological) so that they walk away from the experience emotionally connected to the brand.
- Sampling Campaigns
A sampling campaign is when a brand is able to get their product into the lives of their potential consumer. An effective sample campaign starts with determining a target audience. Getting the right person to try your product and tell others about their positive experience can really boost awareness and sales.
This type of brand activation is believed, among experts, to be the most engaging and transparent form of brand activation.
The significant purpose here is to let the audience try a product for free, and in the process, they will love it. However, you can only hope that they will add the product to their wish list and spend money on it.
- Digital Marketing Campaigns
There’s no denying the fact that experiences aren’t one-dimensional, they can happen in-person and online. In fact, consumers are much more likely to engage in online experiences, or with experiences that include a digital component. Why? Because digital marketing campaigns make it possible to reach audiences beyond physical interactions.
It gives marketers the ability to collect data and gain insights for improving marketing and sales systems. Typically digital marketing is a component of a larger brand activation, and is used to compliment campaigns in-field/in-market.
- Social Media Engagement
Social media engagements are typically a layer, or an element of a larger brand activation. It is a way to drive engagement with your brand and keep consumers interested. Most brand activations utilize social media in some shape or form, but only a few brands are using social to the fullest extent.
With experiential marketing on the rise, marketers have to stay competitive to get the most out of their brand activations. Social media can amplify an event, generate buzz, increase brand awareness, and so much more.
- Promotional Marketing
Promotional marketing involves raising awareness of your brand and its products in order to generate more sales and gain a loyal customer base. The targeting of promotional marketing can take many forms, it can be targeted at businesses, retail and wholesale companies or it can be targeted at the end consumer.
It is important to know that consumer promotions can be executed by using reward loyalty programs, contests, sweepstakes, giveaways, special offers, product samplings as well as point of sale displays.
Some Iconic Brand Activation Case Studies for Nigerian Brands
It is true that brand activation must be unique in its own way, but what is also true is that there’s nothing wrong in gathering inspiration from world renowned brands. Here are successful campaigns of some of the world’s most notable brands:
Apple is one of the well-known brands around the globe. The brand has something to teach you with its brand activation strategy of the “One Night on iPhone 7” campaign. Here, the brand took help from various photographers and asked them to take pictures through their cameras.
Later, they used these pictures to showcase the low-light image capturing abilities that the new iPhone had.
Nordstrom which is known for its luxury merchandise decided to set up special shops that only sell experiences in the year 2017. They offered styling, sampling, and makeover services that ensured delightful as well as memorable experiences.
It helped the brand in developing a better emotional connection that users buying a product. Such sorts of experiences were quite pivotal in making compelling stories that consumers will always remember and feel happy to share with others as well.
In conclusion, you can engage and interact with your audience in a personal way with tactics like experiential marketing, digital campaigns, influencer marketing, and in-person or virtual events.
To succeed with brand activation, it’s important to focus on your audience, make your experiences shareable, and be creative.