If you are anything like us, you’ve been keeping a watchful eye on the tidal flows of brand trends – particularly with growing technologies and innovation. You may have noticed one thing that seems to crop up frequently: Brand Immersion – the idea of creating a more experiential strategy to convey your brand’s key values and messaging. 

In our previous article, we touched on Sonic Branding, which stimulates the auditory senses in addition to the visual standard. Brand immersion, however, is the idea of stimulating as many other senses as possible, to EXPERIENCE your brand and build a memorable connection.

What exactly is Brand Immersion?

Simply put, brand immersion is a holistic approach to bringing all aspects of your brand to life, in any given space – be that physically or digitally. This provides more of a sensory user experience, or more widely known as a ‘brand experience’. A brand experience allows your audience to interact with you and your brand in real-time. Your audience will feel seen, involved and connected to your brand in ways they didn’t have the opportunity to in previous communications. This experience will, in turn, affect both the satisfaction and loyalty of stakeholders through their associations to that brand and its personality. This means that the more immersed, and therefore connected, your audience feels to your brand, the more trusting and likely to recommend they will be.

A nostalgic example springs to my mind of an immersive experience. If you’ve been to Thorpe Park pre-2007, you may remember Pirates 4D.

The world has since further developed and this show has been replaced. However, at the time, this was a very new and exciting concept upon release with this being the UK’s first 4D cinema. The idea that you can watch a 3D adventure and also feel air blasts and water sprays in sync with the story: the experience allowed audiences to feel involved and fully immersed in the mini adventure. It was a new and shiny offering in which the theme park could engage you, and stand apart from the others, while you had a break from ‘wilder’ rides.

A few good examples of brand experiences are:

The House of Vans (Vans)
A skateboarding park that exhibits the iconic brand and some of its products, while providing a safe space for those within the community to spend time together and share experiences. They have been known to also use this space to host specific events, such as live music, to further develop the character of this space.

Symphony in Blue (Johnnie Walker)
Essentially a themed party, these events provide celebration and relaxation through an evening of social fun and entertainment. The nights generally include drinks (featuring Blue Label, of course), theatrical entertainment, live music and interesting activities and photo opportunities.

The GLAMOUR Beauty Festival (GLAMOUR magazine)
A festival that brings all segments of the GLAMOUR magazine to life in one big collaborative experience. Pre-COVID-19, this was hosted at a convention centre, where products, complimentary treatments, a select panel of influencers, celebrities, make-up artists and stylists all converged for the readers of the magazine to engage with in person – instead of simply reading it. Like many large events following the pandemic, this has now been reimagined as an online event, still inclusive of its renowned goody bag – GLAMOUR’s Big Beauty Call.

That’s not to say you must put on a song and dance to create an immersive brand experience, but merely consider the other sensory ways in which a customer can engage with elements of your brand.

Why have an immersive brand experience?

Utilising an experiential event to engage your audience in real-time means you can have an interesting opportunity for a more in-depth and in-person conversation with your audience. This is a bonus for a number of reasons. You can get to know them better, empathise with your audience so they can become more than catalogued data, building their trust and loyalty to your brand. They also get to know you and your brand better, on a more personal level. Having a real-time event also means real-time feedback, directly from the source, which can be insightful to understanding what your audience is looking for.

In this era, there is not only a trend, but almost an expectation to use various social media platforms to share experiences with the world. This is a great tactic to gauge your audience engagement, reactions and perceptions, and measure these against your brand's relevant KPIs. This also increases the potential to widen your reach globally, or even go viral and possibly create an iconic event in line with your brand.

There are various ways in which you can look at incorporating brand immersion within the corporate world. You could look to build an online experience through the various technologies now available, or even still a physical event – such as a launch party, culture day, workshop or a series of conference events. These are not exclusive to commercial brand marketing, nor are the options as limiting as you might think.

If you’d like to discuss further how you could look into creating an immersive brand experience to support your corporate brand, and how to measure its success, please get in touch.

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