In another potentially leading indicator that the life of brand marketing is returning to normal, 75% of brand marketers have resumed live, in-person experiential marketing. And just as importantly, a significant percentage of consumers are coming back in person to experience them.
Those are the findings of an analysis being released today by experience relationship management firm AnyRoad, which is based on about 3 million unique experiential records from consumers engaging with more than 400 brands across 90 countries, primarily in the U.S. and the U.K.
While the analysis is not a census of all brands and their consumers worldwide -- AnyRoad's client base includes marketers such as Budweiser, Diageo, Honda, Nestle, and Tabasco -- it's a representative snapshot of some leading brands' live vs. virtual experiential marketing status.
For reference, AnyRoad defines brand experiences as any way a consumer interacts with a brand -- either digitally or in-person -- including live or virtual events, tours, classes, as well as marketing activations and/or in-store events.
* Porsche offering track days
* Nestle offering in-store samples of their latest product
* MillerCoors doing field activations such as live events
The analysis includes sophisticated ROI factors such as Net Promoter Scores for brands conducting live vs. virtual experiential events, but the net finding of the report is that three-quarters of brands represented have returned to at least some form of in-person experiential marketing, and the percentage of consumers experiencing them has risen significantly since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The analysis finds that while only 4% of consumers were experiencing them in-person in May 2020, more than two-thirds (68%) are once again experiencing them in-person, as of May 2021.