5 Ways to Collect Data at Brand Activations

August 29, 20235 MinutesBy Natalya Jaime

Brand activations are a great way to grow your business, increase brand awareness, and build real relationships with your consumers. There is one important step that helps you get there, though: data collection. 

It may seem like common sense, but collecting data at an activation can be a genuinely daunting task. It can’t feel forced or unnatural and it has to be effective.

70% of consumers become repeat customers after an experiential marketing event (Southern California News Group, 2022). 

Utilizing the proper methods for data collection will ensure you don’t just get one-time customers.

1. Surveys

This method of data collection is meant to be done after a brand activation event. Instead of conducting a survey with customers (which can seem awkward and forced), ask event staff and event managers for their input. 

Ask your staff for ways that you can improve future events, things they found successful at this event, and any comments they received from customers. This information will help your plans for later events to better attract (and gain) customers.

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2. Social Media

At your brand activation, post hashtags and QR codes everywhere you can. Have staffers and social media managers take videos and photos of attendees, post with hashtags, and tag people. You’ll increase the possibility of gaining followers and getting reposted by real people — an amazing way to get organic traffic and engagement from their followers as well. 

Incentivize event goers to follow your brand on social media and post about the event with giveaway entries, free samples, a follow back, and access to exclusive content or products. By doing so, you’re creatively collecting first-party data — you’ll gain insight into your audience demographics, interests, and lifestyles to better tailor your marketing. 

3. Customer Experience

Track customer experience data in a variety of ways. Send out a survey post-event to those in attendance, track attendance throughout the activation, measure the participation of different experiences offered, and even see how many people purchased something at your booth. 

Looking at customer experience is more about tracking KPIs than necessarily speaking to each customer (which is still an option). But looking at the customer journey throughout your activation will tell you so much about the event itself and your consumers. You’ll be able to see how customers interact with your brand and to what extent.

4. Email Collection

No one wants their emails directly solicited from them, especially at an event. But it can be tough for marketers to accept this, since emails can be super valuable for campaigns. Luckily, there are so many creative ways to get consumer emails at activations!

Firstly, require attendees to RSVP to the event and register through email. That way, you already have data from people interested in your event who you can retarget in the future. Another way is to have lists for people to sign with their emails for chances to win special prizes or freebies. Very similar to the social media strategy, email collection has to be give and take. 

5. Sign-Ups, Downloads, and Subscriptions

Creating downloadable content for the activation can get you access to a lot of first-party data. If you have an app for your activations or offer exclusives through a subscription that you can sign up for, you can ask for specific information from your consumers to help your campaigns. 

For example, you have to have downloaded an app for your activation. To get in to the event, you have to create an account. The account asks for an email, age, location, and three top interests. Voila — now consumers can attend your event for free, and you receive enough information to help better target your audience.

Making sure to be intentional about data collection at your activations can be the difference between success and failure. Just be creative, straightforward, and natural — build genuine connections with your consumers and in turn, get enough data for future campaigns.

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