by Krystle Minette, Director of Digital Production
If you’re reading this blog, you probably already know that EWI believes in the power of experience. Engaging experiences build brand equity and drive conversion in a way that few other forms of marketing can touch — and we’ve constructed an entire business around that belief.
But now — to borrow Levar Burton’s famous Reading Rainbow catchphrase — you don’t have to take our word for it.
Recent research commissioned by electronics manufacturer Epson confirms what we’ve been saying for years: The future is experiential.
Highlights from report
Epson studied nearly 10,000 adults in 26 different countries to learn more about their attitudes toward experiences. As we expected, findings confirmed that expectations and desires are indeed shifting in favor of immersive experiences at every turn — events, attractions, retail stores, etc.
But some of the results surprised even us. The trend toward experientialism was especially exaggerated with younger demographics. A whopping 80% of Generation Z and Millennials said they would change their shopping behavior if more retailers created experiential engagements!
While online retailers might be winning the race to the bottom when it comes to price, experiences give traditional retailers an important differentiator that e-commerce can’t touch. Experience gives customers a reason to return to stores. And Epson’s research even found that experiences generate more foot traffic: 29% of shoppers said they would visit a store they usually wouldn’t — if it contained an experiential element.
And when it comes to events, exhibitors should heed the findings of Epson’s report. Gone are the days of static, non-interactive exhibits. No matter how pretty your booth or product might be, modern audiences expect to engage: the study found that 59% of consumers from all age ranges want to physically participate in events — not just observe.
While many of the retailers and exhibitors we work with are already striving to create compelling experiences for their customers, modern audiences continue to demand more experience. Opportunity exists for brands to ride this wave — harnessing the power of experientialism to create meaningful connections and drive conversion. Especially as millennials (gen z behind them) begin to command a larger share of society’s purchasing power, can your brand afford not to invest in meaningful connections?