Thursday, 10 July 2008

Sets and the City

Check out this fantastic piece of experential marketing from Haagen-Dazs.

Source: Contagious Newsletter
It appears to be experiential week here at Contagious, and in the brief bursts of sunshine punctuating the torrential rain we’ve been out and about investigating how different brands are bringing themselves to life in the real world. First up is Haagen-Dazs’s delightful ‘Sets and the City’ project, which brought a specially created tennis court, a giant screen showing all of the action from the Wimbledon tennis championships, some comfy beanbags, a team of beauticians, some free champagne and lots of limited edition Raspberries and Meringue ice cream to the city of London’s Broadgate Market. When Contagious had recovered from the sugar high induced by scoffing three tubs of the stuff down in as many minutes, we caught up with Abigail Marr, brand manager at Haagen-Dazs, and Gemma Newland, MD of Stream\ who masterminded the event, to get the low down.
Contagious: How does this initiative go beyond mere sampling, and who are you targeting?
Abigail: Sets and the City was all about creating an entertaining experience around the Haagen-Dazs brand. An experience that not only resonated with our consumers but also left them with a great, lasting impression. Haagen-Dazs is known to its advocates as the iconic, indulgent treat and what could be more indulgent than eating the new Limited Edition flavour whilst watching this year’s Wimbledon with a glass of champagne and a complimentary manicure?
Are you pleased with the results?
Such brand experience initiatives allow us to hold a conversation with our consumer that is a lot more relevant and progressive than relying purely on more traditional, one-way channels. It gives us a chance to talk to the consumer about our new news and allows us to listen and understand their take on the brand… and the overwhelming news from Sets and the City was that the new limited edition is the perfect way to indulge this summer. Over 25,000 samples are the tangible testimony but I only had to step into the arena to hear the moans of delight!
From a brand-building perspective, what do you think the benefit is to a client like Haagen-Dazs?
Gemma: For a brand like Haagen-Dazs which is a pleasure product, something you indulge in and treat yourself with, experiential makes complete sense because it’s a way of giving more pleasure to the consumer. If we create an experience for them that they enjoy, want to talk about, share with their friends and will keep as a great memory – what better way to market a product? Good experiential activity turns consumers into brand advocates. As of last week the numbers suggest that over 25,000 people experienced the event. On the basis that in general you tell around 7 people if you have had a great time, that’s 150,000 brand advocates in one week - before we start analysing the impact of the PR, digital activity and above the line press support.
At Stream we believe that if a brand is partnering with a pre existing property like Haagen-Dazs and Wimbledon then the presence of the brand should make the experience a better one for the consumer. It should enhance it, or it shouldn’t be there. So Sets in the City was about giving city workers a better way to watch Wimbledon, a truly pleasurable experience that also allowed us to sample the new flavor in a meaningful way.



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