pop-up marketing, marketing, digital, digital marketing
The term ‘pop-up marketing’ might have once reminded us only of irritating ads that summon themselves onto our computer screens without warning, but these days, the term refers more often to real-world interactions with consumers that a growing number of companies are choosing to incorporate into their marketing strategy.
Whether it’s a pop-up shop in the town-centre that’s here one day and gone the next, or a pop-up experience that aims to provide passers-by with a taste of what a company is all about, a pop-up can be the perfect way to expose your brand to local consumers. By their ephemeral nature, they tap right into the FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) effect that can be so encouraging to consumers, giving them an exclusive and special experience to associate with your brand.
But what makes these experiential strategies relevant from a digital marketing perspective?
In short, they also make for highly shareable content.
According to Forbes writer Ilya Pozin, some of the qualities that can make online video more shareable include an upbeat tone, an attempt to engage audiences, an inspiring message and a relatively short running time. A video covering an exciting pop-up experience is readily able to encompass all of these important factors.
Take TV Station Christmas 24’s pop-up experience and accompanying video from 2015, for example. In what they titled their ‘Christmas Gift Experiment,’ the network set up a giant gift-box in the middle of Birmingham’s Grand Central Station with a lit sign reading ‘free presents’ on the front. Passers-by who approached the box received a call from a mysterious voice who offered them a present to deliver to a stranger in the busy station.
The video quickly establishes the pop-up’s set-up and makes the most of Birmingham’s lively inhabitants by following their quests to race around the station and deliver gifts.The tone is light-hearted, it engages with Christmas 24’s audience by using them as the subject of the pop-up challenge, it incorporates an inspiring message about giving, and it all wraps up in just over two minutes. The successful and heartwarming video ended up receiving over 713,000 views on YouTube.
Additionally, video isn’t the only way to generate online attention out of a pop-up experience. Take San Francisco’s Color Factory, for example. This is a pop-up space that Content Marketing Institute writer Clare McDermott describes as “designed for sharing.” It’s a ticketed museum that thrives off of its endlessly photogenic spaces, with attendees lining up just to take photos in one of its many carefully aesthetically balanced rooms to tag and share with friends.
Most of us are more likely to pay attention to recommendations we hear through friends and word-of-mouth over direct advertising efforts, and the Color Factory’s use of a pop-up to create something consumers will be desperate to share with friends is the perfect way to take advantage of this.
If it’s in your budget, you could even champion the pay-by-pop-up approach that rewards your customers for the exposure they give you online. Take a look at Birdseye, for example, who opened a temporary restaurant in London where users paid for their meal simply by posting a picture of their meal on Instagram with the hashtag #BirdsEyeInspirations.
With a good concept in mind, a pop-up experience is certainly worth considering as a budget-friendly and creative way to generate more engaging online content for your brand.