If the aim of some brands with their experiential marketing is to go beyond making a passing impression and become a real, lasting talking point, a masterclass of this can be witnessed at the Portobello Road Ginstitute.
Here, first visitors huddle closely together in dimly lit Victoriana surroundings to listen to the coloured history of the spirit, warmed by a succession of strong gin cocktails. Suitably informed and inebriated they are moved on to a bright and airy, glass vial packed science lab style mixing room where armed with pencil and paper they pass around, sip, sniff and nibble various botanicals.
After much deliberation, and further cocktails, comes the grand finale – each visitor selecting their choice of botanicals to be mixed together, labelled, bottled and even named – ready to take home after fond farewells.
This experience covers all the bases required to implant a strong, positive memory – special surroundings, stories, sensory stimulation, group bonding, and most importantly – something physically created and shareable to prompt story telling for weeks and months to come (depending on how fast you get through your gin).
How many other brands in other categories could press more experiential buttons to wow consumers? How many others could allow opportunities for customers to physically create something that is part their own – part the brand? Surely this is the ultimate way of getting close to your consumers.