Experiential marketing – what is it exactly and why is it so popular for 2019? Experiential marketing is essentially an advertising strategy that helps consumers experience a brand with engaging visuals. The millennial trend of preference is an experience vs material goods which is making its way into other generations and have an effect on how companies market and interact with consumers.

Marketing is more than just showcasing a product. Each point of interaction whether it is the initial ad or the final purchase of the product, matters. It’s not just commercials and billboards anymore.  Marketers are tasked with cutting through the noise and clutter to create a full-on memorable experience.

Top quality brands are speaking to consumers through visual mediums to create a positive interaction and encourage ongoing loyalty. There are 9 particular trends in 2019 that we see becoming more popular and here they are:

1. Interactive experiential Graphics

Interactive environmental graphics are a sure way to bring people together in a fun, and artistic way. Wall murals and displays can easily become community events by inviting others to draw, color and share visual messages with one another.

When the largest California independent accounting and business consulting firm was striving to build a culture of collaboration and innovation they turned to the experts at SpeedPro East Bay. We helped to create giant coloring wall murals where employees could color directly on the printed wallpaper and together build a larger masterpiece. When this one gets filled up, we can easily replace it with a new pattern.

We also developed and produced game walls which included basketball, darts, and other fun engaging games that could be moved from one location to the next. This helps to inspire teamwork and an overall more fun working environment for employees and customers.

games experiential graphics experiential graphics custom wallpaper experiential graphics games

2. Pop-Up Retail Brand Activations

Pop up retail shops, restaurants, museums, and more are becoming prevalent. These limited-time shops draw in customers to act now before it’s gone. This can create serious buzz around a brand through social media for special photo opportunities or giving a feeling of community by visiting this one place.

Companies can turn a commercial space into an entirely different brand experience. For example, Under Armour has partnered with Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors for shoe endorsements which have become increasingly more popular over the last few years. Recently, they’ve opened an SC30/ Under Armour pop up shop in Downtown Oakland where fans and locals can come in and share the Curry experience.

When the experts doing the marketing and design on this project needed fresh new graphics, they turned to us at SpeedPro East Bay. The experiential graphics in this particular shop included footprint floor graphics, cut vinyl wall quotes of sayings and doubts that he approached in his career like  “Golden State will never win with Steph Curry’s ankles”, signs for the entrance, hanging banners, and posters with monumental images from his career.

This pop-up shop gives customers a new way to experience Stephen Curry, have a little fun in the process, and provide an elite experience for people to share.

Due to the fact that the new look of the store hadn’t been released to the public yet, we were limited to what images we could take. These are just a few.

pop up retail store graphics pop up retail graphics

3. Digitized hand-drawn artwork

When it comes to design and originality, UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland is right on target. They recently built a new outpatient center for children and their family members and when they had a little extra money in the budget, they called on SpeedPro East Bay.

UCSF Benioff took the hand-drawn and painted pictures from children who stayed at the hospital and digitized them by using a high-quality scanner. The texture of the watercolors showed through on the scans creating an even more authentic look to these images. The graphics went from 8.5 x 11 original images to varying sizes going as large as 12.5 feet wide.  We printed and installed these wall graphics for 70 rooms throughout the hospital and in less than 3 days the job was completed.

This type of artwork turned what is typically an uncomfortable place for children, into something welcoming and familiar. The children can now see their or their friend’s artwork up when they visit and it gives them something warm to look at.

digitized hand drawn graphics of a flower on a hospital wall digitized hand drawn graphics of a monkey on a hospital wall digitized hand drawn graphics on a hospital wall

digitized hand drawn graphics of a tree on a hospital wall digitized hand drawn graphics of a whale on a hospital wall digitized hand drawn graphics of Dream Big on a hospital wall

4. smartphone imagery that holds up when blown up

When it comes to images, one of the biggest trends is a shift toward authenticity. Stock images can easily be spotted a mile away, but original images that have a story or deeper meaning behind them are what helps to create a unique experience. When it came to this dance studio which was recently renovated, the client sought out SpeedPro East Bay to help make the most of this large empty wall.

However, the obstacle that he was facing was finding the right image to place on it.  The client had taken a picture of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge but it was on his smartphone. He was concerned that it would be a barrier but because of our technology, we were able to take this image and make it high-quality enough to be blown up on a wide format printing scale.

The wall was 60′ wide by 14′ tall and although up close the image may be the slightest bit grainy, at 10-20 feet away from where the dance studio attendees spend most of their time, the image is crystal clear capturing one of East Bay’s most iconic images.

We don’t have to rely on stock images anymore. We can take the technology that we have and turn it into something even greater through great, big, graphics and a smartphone.

Bay Bridge wall mural

5. dimensional lettering and contour cut signage

Experiential graphics are all about transforming an environment to help connect people through the use of innovation. With the combination of a flatbed printer and a contour cutting machine (CNC), this allows for endless dimensional graphics opportunities.  We can cut almost any shape, material, and size whether it be letters or a full-scale image.

This NERD100 sign for nerdwallet was created when a set creator was looking for a local shop that could print and cut dimensional graphics. They were looking for something very short term and disposable after using it just one time as a backdrop. They were also very specific on how thick they wanted the letters to be. The perfect solution we found for this was by stacking 1/2″ foam-core together to make 2″ thick letters and the result was picture worthy. With a template provided, it helped make the installation process easier.

3-Dimensional contour cut media creates an Instagram worthy moment and serves as a focal point for selfies and group photos throughout an event.

dimensional lettering and cut signage

6. custom pop

A point of purchase display is a marketing method used to promote a product. These have been very “cookie-cutter” in the previous years with basic stands and racks with products on them. Now, companies are taking their graphics to the next level and getting creative with it.

The Balm cosmetic company ran a fun tropical campaign during the holidays to promote their newest products and they decided to get creative with it. These graphics were printed, contour cut, and then placed throughout the store and window to entice customers. Since they were temporary graphics we used foam-core and then built easel stands to put on the back and help make them free-standing graphics.

Custom branded POP displays are increasingly becoming more popular as a way to get audiences attention especially with the power of CNC machines.

point of purchase display examples window graphics cut out figures in display

7. Textures and tiles

Digital environments and graphics have become so popular that we tend to overlook the tangible elements which connect brands to consumers. Through experiential marketing and graphics, there are a wide variety of material options to transform a space and provide sensory engagement.

Turn away from the standard vinyl when looking at wall murals and consider something a bit more fun. We offer canvas, suede, stucco, crushed stone, and more. These all have adhesive backings making installation mess free. These options are also PVC free which schools and hospitals require.

This wall mural installed in a San Francisco office was created by a photographer that took famous SF monuments and created one large collage. He wanted to keep the artistic element and not just print on something smooth so we offered the canvas material to give it texture and give it a unique look.

digitally printed custom wall tiles

8. 3d wall murals and coverings

Companies and offices looking to add a lively element to the environment often turn to wall murals and coverings as a creative solution. However, there is an increase demand for dimensional graphics that are eye-catching and fit the brand.

For example, Fort Point in San Francisco has hallways of brick arches through the old barracks and this graphic was created to replicate that look inside of the building. This not only stays consistent with their branding but it also gives a fun photo opportunity for tourists as well as a 3-dimensional experience. The imagery created was also meant to look like the brick had been worn over the years as the original brick at Fort Point has.

This combination of wall graphics with 3-dimension can truly make a statement.

experiential graphics trends

9. treat space as branding real estate

Any space can be transformed into an opportunity to engage and communicate with your consumer to create a brand experience. This can be in the form of floor graphics or ceiling wraps to get people looking in places that they wouldn’t normally look.  This can also add an interesting design element that catches their attention.  Cutouts for photo opportunities are the perfect way to get consumers engaged and remembering your product.  The whole point is to grab attention so the more out of the box and outrageous the idea, the better.

face cut out photo fun

If you’re ready to get started with your experiential marketing, contact us today for a free consultation!