10 Questions To Ask To Pre-Qualify An Experiential Interaction
Wikipedia defines experiential marketing, sometimes called "engagement marketing," or "event marketing," as a marketing strategy that directly engages consumers and invites and encourages consumers to participate in the evolution of a brand.
The importance of events is unquestionably presumed. In addition to brand and media exposure, businesses now have other reasons (and tools) for partnering with an event, including driving sales or building client relationships. This is the same for events seeking sponsors as investors, while maximizing the engagement and entertainment of their common audience for the benefit of all parties.
For the purposes of this post, my references to 'event' or 'events' is relative in both cases of business-to-consumer (B2C) event engagement and business-to-business (B2B) trade show engagement. The methods are similar, although the audience, and sometimes the approach, may be different.
The same goes for events vs sponsors. The content of this post can be applied in either case of events seeking brands and sponsors, as well as for brands and sponsors sponsoring an event.
So here are my Top 10 Questions to Ask to Pre-qualify an Experiential Interaction prior to engaging in an activation project being proposed:
Please keep in mind these questions definitely do not represent the entire relationship and its custom refinements. They are definitely not the only questions to be asked, and merely represent the Top 10 in a rhetorical sense. They are part of a pre-qualification exploratory process, a first-step before any specific relationship and proposal is discussed in detail, obviously with more relevant and complex questions to follow. They are not intended to replace what is in place and working for you, and suggested only as a complementary tool.
- What is the product, service, solution, event, venue, talent, offering;
- What is the size and value of target audience, and what's expected;
- What is the length of time/days of actual audience interaction and engagement;
- What is the physical and quantitative specifics of the field presence; people and resources;
- What is the ratio of experiential and event marketing within the marketing budget;
- What is the past history and examples of successful and failed experiments with event sponsorship or event sponsors;
- What is the date and specifics of their most recent event; expectations and results;
- What is the understanding of socialization; interactions with social media, policy, effectiveness;
- What is the way they've handled projects of this nature in the past, in-house or outsourced, or both;
- What is the strategy in place relative to this project? Is it flexible? Open to having it re-written in its entirety?
Of course sometimes after the first question, if the agency or consultant doesn't feel the passion for either the client's product, service, solution or the event, talent, and the venue, and/or the passion of their pitch and belief in their proposal or what they're proposing, the right agency or consultant would not take on the project.
If they themselves are not passionate about what you have to offer, how would they convince others? After all in the end, sponsorship is an investment. And a collaboration worthy of emotional engagement between all involved, including their audience-in-common, the intended 'victim' in this case.
Do you have others that would make your Top 10? Please share.
Metin Odemis is the Founder and Chief Marketing Officer at Interactive Sponsor, an experiential marketing branding and sponsorship sales and consulting agency based in Los Angeles and in London, matching high-profile clients with high-end and luxury brands. For the past decade, he's been involved with major red carpet events, including the Golden Globe Awards and the GRAMMY® Celebration among others. Metin's area of expertise is in the brand and audience engagement at live events within the sports & entertainment and fashion industries, as well as creating brand experiences, online, onsite, and mobile. Follow him on SponsorPitch and @iSponsor on Twitter.