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73% of consumers trust brands more after experiencing them live

Investment in live events has the potential to deliver a three-fold ‘purchase advantage’ over other media channels for brands launching a consumer product or service, according to a new report. 

Research commissioned by Set Creative reveals 73% of consumers in the UK and US are more likely to purchase a product if they have taken part in a live brand event. 

The key findings from The Value of Experience report include: 

Shifting media preferences  

In an era of fake news and declining trust in traditional forms of marketing, events are becoming the disruptive channel to communicate with consumers. 

The survey reveals that 44% of UK and US adults have increased their time spent on attending live events or new experiences in the last two years – with the figure rising significantly for the Millennial (57%) and Affluent Millennial (64%) categories. 

It’s a growing trend as 40% of UK and US consumers have increased their spending on new experiences in the last two years, climbing to 62% among Affluent Millennials. 

As brands explore live events to build trust, understanding their physical and emotional impact on consumers is crucial. The survey findings reveal that 82% of UK and US adults want brands to create experiences that ‘entertain, engage and educate’ them. 

Creating a brand experience 

While the survey reveals significant opportunities on offer to brands who fully embrace experiential marketing, to truly understand the value of experience, Set Creative carried out a series of practical tests and face-to-face interviews among 300 UK consumers (reading, listening, watching and participating in a live demonstration). 

Themed around ‘making a new mocktail’ and the launch of a new fictitious orange drinks brand, Sevillian, the test found a significant correlation to the survey findings. 

Experiential: A significant advantage 

Respondents involved in the live demonstration felt ‘entertained’ (66%), ‘engaged’ (54%) and ‘satisfied’ (37%) by the activity. All these attributes scored significantly higher than for those involved in the video, reading and listening tests. 

As a result, participants in the live demonstration were significantly more likely to share (55%) or recommend (51%) the Sevillian brand, compared to those involved in the reading (16% and 15%), listening (13% and 8%) and video tests (12% and 9%). 

Of those involved in the Sevillian live experience, 41% claimed to be ‘very likely’ to purchase the product. A near three-fold advantage over those involved in the reading (16%), listening (13%) and video tests (12%). 

Commenting on the launch of the report, Guy Tremlett, Chief Creative Officer at Set Creative says: 

“We are constantly, and rightly, challenged to justify why a physical experience is a more effective form of communication than more traditional channels of advertising. Common sense dictates that you’re more likely to remember something you physically experience than something you see, hear or read. But common sense isn’t proof!” 

“There’s no real data available directly comparing the effectiveness of these four channels, so we decided to conduct an experiment to try and learn more about the value of experience against more conventional marketing methods.” 

Tremlett concludes: “As our findings show, making people feel appreciated and entertained creates a different kind of value and leaves them more likely to share, recommend or purchase your brand. In our opinion, experience is less about counting impressions and more about making impressions that count.”