AGAR: Research Shows Memorability is the Top Driver of Experiential Marketing ROI

As a crowded communications landscape makes it increasingly more difficult to reach customers, marketers are turning to creating experiences that cut through the clutter. New research provides brands some much-needed guidance as to what drives ROI for experiential marketing efforts.

The study, commissioned by AGAR and conducted by Burke, Inc., shows that memorable events are most likely to drive consumers to learn more, feel positively and be inspired to purchase a product or service from the sponsor. The top drivers of memorable events are those that are awe-inspiring, fun, adventuresome, liberating and appealing to the senses. The lowest drivers include: affordability, cause-based, family friendly, accessibility and unexpected.

AGAR has created thousands of events and we always look for the core brand promise to come to life when we put the customer in the center of the experience, said Josh Heuser, AGARs founder and a recognized expert in experiential marketing. We wanted to quantify the ROI of experiential marketing and use the research to help clients win with consumers. We partnered with Burke to find out what consumers, who are put at the center of experiences, really think.

The research also shows that sponsors benefit significantly from their association with memorable events in three key measures. Of sponsored events, 32% remembered the sponsor for the 12-month period following the event, and:

  • 57% were inclined to learn more
  • 93% felt more positively about the sponsor
  • 70% were inspired to purchase

Also of note from the study, memorability is driven by the experience, not the group with whom participants attended the event. In fact, 18% of study participants attended events alone.

Memory building is most predictive of intentions to learn more about event sponsors, feelings of positivity and interest in purchase surpassing event satisfaction, likelihood to recommend and likelihood to return as key indicators, said Mark Travers, PhD., of Burke. This research can help bring needed clarity to experiential marketers. Its about being purposeful about a real return on investment.

As experiential marketing continues to take on more prominence, its important that companies have ways to measure how effective their experiential marketing strategy is, said Heuser. We will be using this research to help our clients optimize their experiences and achieve their stated goals as well as elevate their experiential platform with their customers and prospects. We look forward to sharing these insights along with our experience in the industry with our clients, industry organizations, student groups and anyone who wants to learn more about the growing experiential space.

According to Chief Marketer, brands will spend 20.7% of their overall marketing budget on events and experiences “ up from 18.7% in 2017.

About AGAR

AGAR is a Cincinnati-based experiential company that leverages human experiences, event production, digital technology, music, art and content to inspire and jolt audiences, build memories and get results for brands and communities. AGAR has worked with iconic brands and industry leaders including Procter & Gamble, Kroger, U.S. Bank and Lexus. Founded on the premise that as the world grows more and more digital, the value of a human experience inherently increases. AGAR has been growing culture through immersive, sensory platforms since 2008.

About Burke

Founded in 1931, Burke is an independent, decision sciences, insights and innovation firm. Burke capitalizes on its state-of-the-art research execution, advanced analytical techniques and leading edge technology to provide decision support solutions to companies across all major industry sectors. A 100% employee-owned company, Burke is also the industry leader in marketing research and insights education through The Burke Institute. In addition, Burke, Inc. acquired Seed Strategy in 2014, creating a world-class consultancy with the ability to provide stronger, more actionable perspective for clients through the pairing of Burkes prowess in research-based decision support and Seed Strategys expertise in new product innovation and strategic brand development. Burke is headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, with regional offices throughout the United States.

About the Survey

AGAR secured Burke to conduct an online survey. The survey was started June 4, 2018, and closed June 14, 2018. Statistical testing was conducted at 95% confidence level.