Brand activation ideas for in-store and on-street events

One of the most common event scenarios are in-person events. The goal is to get the product into customers' hands and build trust.

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Like our live events, another common scenario is on-street or in-store digital activations for consumer brands. These are physical experiences where the goal is to get the product into customers' hands and build trust, often within a physical retail environment.

Idea #1 - Sampling

The bread and butter of on-street brand activations are sampling experiences. On their own, these don't qualify as activations, but they're great opportunities to get the customer engaged, usually via a touch-screen TV or tablet for the brand ambassador or customer to interact with.

There are many twists on sampling:

  • Taste tests: Have a customer taste a series of products and choose their product. Or see if a customer can guess a certain product vs another in a blind test.
  • Play to sample: Provide a multi-choice quiz, a competitive quiz between friends or a quick time-waster for customers to play before receiving a sample.
  • Share to sample: Ask the customer to post on social media with a tag. Once they've shared, reward them with a sample.
  • Vending machines: Automate the experience with vending machines that automatically deliver samples when the activation is complete.

Idea #2 - QR-code coupons

Why not open up the experience using a QR code coupon activation? You can roll this one out remotely, either in physical spaces (think public transport, on-street advertising, in-store) or digitally, via social media. Users scan a branded QR code and are whisked to an online landing page. Here they can fill in their information, play a game, or answer a quiz question. They receive their unique digital coupon that can be saved and later redeemed in-store.

Idea #3 - Spin the wheel

Everyone loves a giveaway. And what better way to do it than with a shiny, animated spinning wheel, just like at a casino or on a game show. This is a tried, true, and tested mechanic that goes back decades. You can place it in-store, or on a large TV or projector. There are many ways to make use of this activation.

  • Give a away different products depending on where the arrow lands on the wheel
  • Eliminate options on the wheel as more users take part, leaving the most valuable prizes until the end.
  • Setup a number of on-site challenges that participants must perform in order to receive a sample or prize.
  • Turn participants against each other by introducing forfeits instead of challenges.
  • Bring the experience fully online and let people compete for prizes or coupons.
  • Boost e-commerce sales by offering additional prizes or discounts at checkout
  • Turn the event on its head and add trivia questions to the wheel.

The options are endless

Idea #4 - In-person interactions

When you have a physical space available, a simple but rewarding activation is adding an interesting real world effect when action is taken via a trigger.

  • Turn the Christmas tree lights on when someone scans a QR code
  • Give someone a sample when they click a button (see the sampling idea above)
  • Show incoming SMS or social media posts on an LED scroller.

This “when this happens do that” is a common theme for many different activations. Tomorrow we’re going to expand on this by discussing some of the types of triggers you can use at physical activations.

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This post is part of our exclusive brand activation ideas email series where we share dozens of ready-to-go home-run ideas for experiential marketers like yourself.

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