Agencies and Big Brands’ Guide to Brand Activation Strategies

December 9, 2022
Posted By: Big Digital
Portable digital billboards deployed for a brand activation campaign

Brand activations take a different approach to audiences than your standard marketing campaign. The goal of a brand activation is to engage and motivate audiences in ways that digital and broadcast marketing can’t. Activations bring brands to life and make a real-life impression.

Big brands and agencies need effective strategies for brand activation marketing. Our guide will help you plan an activation that connects with customers and increases brand awareness.

#1 Experiential Marketing

Experiential marketing is one of the bolder options you can choose when it comes to brand activations for your business, but if it’s done successfully, it can have a huge impact. Events can be designed to give people a chance to experience a product. For example, some auto companies have tapped into Augmented Reality or Virtual Reality to create unique test drive experiences in showrooms or at events.

Experiential marketing can also be fun and interactive, designed to create an emotional bond and positive associations with a brand rather than introducing a specific product to new audiences. Brands and agencies can use unique marketing gamification, AR/VR experiences, contests, and giveaways to achieve these goals.

What does experiential marketing really look like? Take our recent LEGO gamification experience. As part of LEGO’s City Stuntz launch, BIG Digital created an immersive experiential activation using digital displays and interactive gaming with custom mobile integration. The campaign focused on branded pop up environments in targeted locations throughout North America. Users could trigger our custom gamification experience by scanning a QR code displayed on our digital displays with their mobile devices.

A great strategy for interactive experiences is blending in-person with digital experiences through mobile integration. Get participants to play through an app or unlock Augmented Reality features. BIG Digital can help you plan and program the right kind of experience when you rent digital signage in Toronto, Canada, or anywhere in the world.

Pop up digital billboards display an immersive gamification experience in support of LEGO

#2 Sampling and Pop Up Campaigns

If your goal is to introduce a new product to audiences or expand your brand to a new market, a sampling campaign is a straightforward way to extend your reach. Sampling campaigns can spread word of mouth and generate excitement.

An alternative to a sampling campaign might also be a branded pop-up store. Whether you set up as a one-time event or find temporary retail space, pop up campaigns can make you more accessible to new audiences. Use the event as a reason to reach out to local influencers and bloggers, send out press releases to relevant media, and target your customer database.

Digital billboards can support your next pop up campaign by providing integrated terminal solutions. Digital displays aren’t just for advertising, they can also showcase real-time QR codes to facilitate purchases and enable instant commerce capabilities. In addition to driving purchases, they can also funnel leads to your website and create instant calls to action.

A successful sampling or pop up campaign depends on finding the right time and place to reach your target audience. You want to go where your target audience will be at a time when they’re free to stop and engage. Support your next pop up campaign with portable digital billboards.

Digital billboards used in pop up commerce applications

#3 Digital Marketing

Engaging with someone in the real world is a powerful way to make an impression, but a new study shows it takes 5 to 7 impressions before a brand sticks in someone’s memory. That’s the battle big brands and agencies are constantly fighting: how do they stay top of mind with their audiences in the face of so much competition?

Experiences aren’t restricted to in-person events. They can also happen online, and a digital brand activation should include an online experience. Digital marketing is usually a component of a broader brand activation and complements in-person events.

Digital billboards are a way of pushing the online experience and awareness. You get their attention in the real world, but it’s through digital marketing that you can drive them to action. Use QR codes to quickly connect real-world audience members with online resources and channels you can use to follow up and convert leads.

#4 In-Store Activations

In-store marketing activations are a great way to motivate potential customers to your brand over a competitor’s. There are many ways to run an in-store activation, including on-floor digital displays, hosting, and point of purchase displays.

Brands that own their own locations can use in-store activations to introduce new products. They target an audience that’s familiar with you. You can leverage their engagement with your brand to turn them into early adopters of new offerings. Get them excited, and they’ll generate word-of-mouth advertising.

#5 Sponsorship Activations

When big brands want to be on people’s minds, they sponsor big events. A sponsorship activation leverages your brand’s support of big events like music festivals, sporting events, concerts, and events of all kinds.

When it comes to sponsorship activations, you’ve found a time and location that brings large groups of people together during their free time. The downside is that you’re competing with the main event, which means you need to deliver an engagement that’s fun or adds real value to their experience.

A sponsorship activation takes your efforts beyond getting your logo seen. It’s an opportunity to engage with passionate fans, share an exciting moment with your target audience, and leverage partnerships to expand your reach.

How Can Digital Billboards Help your Brand Activation?

Let portable digital billboards help you achieve your brand activation goals. BIG Digital provides all the types of billboard advertising you need to drive engagement at your next activation.

Communicate in Real Life

With our portable digital billboards, you can talk to your audience anyplace, anytime. During the busy holiday season, you want to target high-traffic shopping areas, seasonal event spaces like Christmas Markets and New Year’s Eve events, and other places where large groups of people get together.

Go Where No One Else Can

The one-of-a-kind design of our portable digital billboards enables our plug-and-play solution. We can set up in places no one else can. Our digital billboards are ready to go in minutes with minimal installation requirements. We can take your activation to any outdoor location.

Create an Experience

We don’t just rent out portable digital billboards; we also work closely with brands and agencies to create custom experiences through digital displays. We work with you to create brand activations that reflect your vision and get attention. In addition to custom experiences, we also have plug and play gamification experiences that you can deploy in no time.

Measuring ROI

Agencies and big brands need a way to measure the ROI of their marketing efforts, and BIG Digital helps with that. Our portable digital billboards come with on-site event and location analytics that can tell you key information such as dwell times, visitor flow, foot traffic flow, and other meaningful data. Walk away with key insights into your activation efforts.

Talk to BIG Digital about planning your next big activation. We can support your efforts with plug-and-play portable digital billboards, custom branded experiences, and more.