Coupled with the global digital commerce adoption is the widespread consumer desire for interactive entertainment and more active, immersive branded experiences that put them in the driver seat. A shift in how consumers are discovering products and services, as well as connecting with their favorite brands and retailers, has ushered in a new wave of promotional and educational activations. To maintain relevance and drive loyalty within an increasingly hybrid landscape, brands are tapping into the unique capabilities of new technologies to leverage next-generation marketing formats that blur the most loved aspects of physical activations with the streamlined nature of virtual and digital experiences.
Advanced visualization technologies like augmented and virtual reality are helping brands generate excitement, while shoppable experiences and content are allowing customers to explore products and learn about their features in hyper-realistic ways. Connected packaging and mobile mini-games are expanding the ways brands can tactilely engage and communicate with their audiences. Simultaneously, tech-powered Interactive marketing formats are giving shoppers a more active role in the brand discovery experience by linking physical products, related digital landscapes, and remote adventures through exciting, location-powered immersive offerings.
Progressive brands are embracing a suite of new channels and new technologies to connect and engage their audiences. At the furthest edges, companies are even experimenting with fully owned physical experiences to bring their identities to life and delight shoppers with prizes and contests that serve as a platform to market both brand and product.
In this report, PSFK describes five trends that show how brands are engaging shoppers with next-generation promotional experiences and delivering enhanced, user-activated marketing campaigns. Each of the trends is supported by recent best-in-class examples of innovation from the marketplaces.
Brands and retailers are increasingly meeting consumers beyond the store with mobile-friendly activations. Layering mobile-activated purchase moments into window displays, pop-up locations and even murals is helping turn on-the-go moments into shoppable occasions. Additionally, mobile-led brand activations are also being deployed to educate consumers on the use-cases of certain products through true-to-life experiential display formats. These new ways to win attention and engagement by inviting the consumer “in” to the experience are changing the ways shoppers interact with brands across various channels and devices throughout the shopping journey.Location-Triggered AR
Growing adoption and applications of AR technology paired with sophisticated image recognition capabilities have added a layer of digital information and interactivity onto the physical world. Marketers are leveraging these immersive, location-specific augmented experiences to help brands generate excitement and allow customers to explore products and learn about their features and background in a hyper-realistic way, while providing brands and retailers with new methods to surprise and delight their core audiences and attract new shoppers.Playable Packaging
Beyond the final product, brands are designing interactive games and content, from curated playlists to AR experiences, that consumers can access via packaging. Adding an additional layer to the purchase funnel experience, these playable package designs act as added value and provide a complementary connected social element to the product. Connected packaging also opens the doors to new partnership opportunities for brands that can leverage and lean on audience synergies to promote both products and experiences across a wide variety of shopper channels, segments, and activation points.