View this email as a web page here.

As consumers demand more purpose, authenticity, and transparency, marketers should consider an adapted form of experiential marketing to boost perception of their brand. The Drum states, "experience creates emotional connections but only when that experience resonates with the audience on a sensory and a rational level."

While strategizing a brand experience may sound more overwhelming than brainstorming a social media campaign, brands that thoughtfully plan out their ideal customer touchpoints can drive more awareness and value to their audience. Those that don’t map out these interactions risk poorly executed “experiences” that seem more like a sales pitch

From collaborating with nano-influencers to hosting virtual workshops, brands are rethinking customer journeys and using this time to build more engaging experiences. The correlation between authentic connection and virtual events has never been as prominent as it is now, and teams that understand this (and properly adjust) will remain top of mind.

Craving for human connection

As brands adapt to immersive experiences, consumers will simultaneously demand more digital detoxification – along with a craving for a real connection with real people. In fact, a survey of over 4000 people in the US and UK uncovered that 7 in 10 people tried to moderate their digital consumption in some way.  

Airbnb Experiences went online after hosts suggested new ways to continue sharing their passions from home. Now, adventure-seekers can virtually meditate with monks in Japan, join live yoga, make Sangrias with drag queens, or learn about nutrition.

AirbnbExperiences_TINT_Future-of-Marketing (1)

Their latest #stayhome ad features a heartfelt collection of users sharing their Online Airbnb Experiences and new friendships around the globe – demonstrating that Airbnb is placing human connection through user-generated content at the core of their strategies. Other brands including Fiat, Jeep, and Dodge, are also highlighting the voice of employees and customers to connect more authentically. 

The rapidly changing market provides opportunities for creativity – and as people seek genuine connections, brands should seize the chance to meet them with meaningful strategies.

Crisis marketing in Food Service

Delivery, to-go, and curbside options have extended the lifeline for many restaurants – allowing them to continue engaging their customers from a distance. Other restaurants even turned into grocery stores or offered virtual lunches with celebrities.  “We’ve learned just how important our investment in digital technology truly is,” shares Robert Earl in Modern Restaurant Management.


According to Technomic, “the expected food service impact currently ranges from a decline of 11% to 27% in year-over-year growth.” However, there is hope as many restaurants had already begun implementing online ordering while others quickly adjusted their service model to fit new patterns.

As we wait for the food industry to reopen its doors to dine-in options, restaurants should begin considering experiences to make customers feel comfortable to return and dine with them.

Marketing in the next dimension

Technology is transforming digital marketing from vanity metrics like clicks and views to interactive – and useful – experiences. Apple and Google joined forces to create a contact-tracing app that allows users to document who they’ve been in contact with and help identify those who should self-isolate.  


Quibi, the noisy new short-form video app, had to pivot quickly after plans for a big launch were crushed. From canceling celebrity events to pulling ads from NBA screens, the brand improvised and still moved forward with the launch – generating real-time conversation and over 1.7 million downloads in the first week. T-Mobile also partnered with Quibi to offer their customers a free year subscription.

Screentime has jumped and marketers must consider what matters most to consumers, and use these insights to create purpose-driven experiences. Brands that do this well will gain an advantage over those that remain stagnant.




Each week in #brandcrush we highlight exceptional brands
that are channeling their customers' voice to connect more
authentically with their audience.

The nation’s number one grocery store, H-E-B, has led with digital innovation and generous giving to help bring people together. Using the hashtag #TexansHelpingTexans, H-E-B encourages people to share “everything from an amazing pantry meal, tips to keep the family entertained, or even stories about neighbors helping neighbors.” The hashtag has generated heavy usage and garnered the support of many prominent celebrities and politicians. 




From donating to the Food Bank to feeding first responders, H-E-B is also tracking generous efforts on its website. To name a few, H-E-B has launched a Senior Support Line, raised wages, offered free Curbside – and also invites people to donate to organizations providing essential services such as United Way, Meals on Wheels and Feeding Texas. 

H-E-B is a brand leader using their position to step up and create new experiences to help vulnerable communities. Once the uncertainty is over, those that showed up during challenging times will retain brand loyalty and more engaged customers. 


If you enjoyed this email, subscribe to Future of Marketing here