Experiential Marketing Examples: Artfulchange

December 30, 2010
My biggest question is how to I find my local target market? As in, how do I figure out who locally likes music like Clapton, Hendrix, SRV and ALSO is into green and sustainability and art? And then second, once I find them, how do I engage them through guerrilla marketing- and what types of guerrilla marketing would best serve my needs? Jay Trainer, Founder of Artfulchange

Artfulchange is a San Francisco based collaboration of artists and environmentalists to use passion for the arts to make a difference. Artfulchange events catalyze social change and promote awareness, activism and action in everyday life.

Here’s what our industry panel said:

Christian Jurinka’s Attack!

One of the nice things about your target market is that they have a tendency to be out and about.  Music lovers love live music, and when they are out enjoying and exploring the music, they are very open to new experiences.  My initial thought is to build a calendar of all the live musical events that are in your local market based around the particular genre of music you target (Hendrix, Clapton, etc).  At the same time, you can build a similar calendar for green events.  Now that you have answered the question of where, as in, “Where is my target consumer?”, next is the how, as in “How do I connect?”

From a guerrilla perspective, there are always flyers, but for the rock crowd, they get overwhelmed with flyers already for other shows, etc.  My suggestion is more in the direction of either people or stencils or posters.  On the people side, recruit a bunch of people and perhaps all dress in costume and go to some events.  At the events, connect with people, tell them what you are all about, pass out a flyer or maybe do something a little more solid like give out temp tattoos.  In either case, if you are all dressed the same, it will create a stir so that not only will the people you interacted with know and remember you, but the buzz of you being at the events will trickle down to those that you did not connect with.  On the stenciling side, maybe you can take an artistic, green focused approach to getting your message infront of your audience.  Do a search on street stenciling how-to and you can learn about how to do this type of work.  Two things to remember:  First, use only spray chalk or chalk vs. paint.  Second, keep in mind that some cities are not too keen on stenciling and have started to issue fines for those doing stencils.  That being said, it may just be best to utilize the people side of things and recruit as many of your friends, dress the same and hit the streets.

You could also hit up music schools and music stores with your materials.  Connecting with the people who run these business may also give you a chance to actually speak with their patrons in a more organized condoned approach as well.  Last thought here, if you are going after people who are green-conscious, it would be easy for you to connect with your audience at yoga studios, health food stores, or even meditation centers.  Again, see if you can get on their roster of education/entertainment.

For all of these events, make sure you are gathering people’s contact information, or have a way to connect with them.  A internet connected iPad could go a long way in getting people to be a fan of you on Facebook.  However you do it, you need to build up that database of followers.

Christian Jurinka, Managing Partner at Attack!


Andrew Loos’s Attack!

It all depends on what you hope to accomplish after you “find” these people.
If your goal is to create an online community of like-minded people, engage them in daily conversations and, ultimately, inspire/challenge them, you should first  seek them out in a live setting when they’re at play.  Flavorpill, Thrillist and a slew of online alt press publications allow us access to just about every event, big or small, in your city.  Locate local happenings where this type of classic-rock, eco-conscious soul will be letting loose at and get to networking.
Talk to them.  Interview them on Flip cams.  “Friend” them on the spot with a 3G iPad.  As long as its memorable and they walk knowing more about your cause & community, you’ve done your job.  Remember, if they associate you as the cool person they met in person and then continued talking with online after, you’ll be dealing with a more genuine, sustainable relationship.
Andrew Loos, Attack! Managing Partner


Noel Chandler’s Attack!

These are two great questions that all start up companies/organizations need to determine as quickly as possible. Focused efforts = greater chance of success. That said, marketing without a target market is wasted effort, so rather than giving guerrilla marketing ideas without knowing, let’s start with two areas:
1) Defining your target market.
2) Defining your offering.

The Madlibs Format:
I recently found out about a great way to pitch your business or organization using a MadLibs format which can help you determine both of the above:
My/Our organization, _[company/org name]_, is/offers/has developed _[a defined offering]_ to help _[a defined audience]_ _[solve a problem]_ with/through _[secret sauce]_.

1) Defining Your Target Market
From Artfulchange’s website, their market in a broad sense seems like it could be “anyone who is into artistic/creative and concerned about the environment”, which is great, but in my opinion, it’s too broad. Start simple so people can understand what you do and build from there. Using the MadLibs format above you can define a more specific audience to speak to and also figure out what makes Artfulchange different (the secret sauce).

2) Defining Your Offering
What is it that Artfulchange does very well? Is it fundraising events/benefits? Driving sales of products/services that support causes? Lead activities that raise awareness? I would pick the one thing Jay (and the Artfulchange team) knows they do very well and make that it’s core mission, it’s reason to exist. So many things can be built from that. I see a lot of past events, which is great. I love events, they’re the perfect venue to showcase/sell art, educate people, let like-minded individuals meet, etc.

For example, let’s say that Artfulchange produces events where they promote artists who all opt-in to donate a portion of proceeds from the sale of their art (or ticket price/cover charge) at the event for specific causes.

Their Madlib might read:
Our organization, Artfulchange, is group of artists and environmentalists collaborating to help green organizations raise money and awareness through creative events.

With the MadLib above…
Target Market(s):

1) Artists interested in helping the environment, who want to be promoted and are willing to donate proceeds of their work to the cause.
2) Individuals interested in fun, creative, environmental, cause-based events.

The Offering:
Creative events that raise money and awareness for artists and environmental organizations.

Guerrilla/Event Marketing:
The great thing about art events is that they can be super fun to go to, even for those not interested in buying art. They’re a “scene” where money can be raised, but also organizations can set up tables to speak with people to raise awareness. Assuming we’re using the MadLibs format above, here’s a formula for event success I used with some other friends to build a monthly art event from 50 people in a pizza place to 1,000 regular attendees in less than 10 months:

Produce an Artfulchange “core” event showcasing 10-15 artists (or more if you already have access to a large enough venue and artists) and make sure each one of them brings 10-20 people: make it a condition of being showcased. Everyone knows 10-20 people and if they can’t commit to bring them, have them wait until the next event. This isn’t about having strict rules, it’s about ensuring a packed and successful event: 15 artists x 10-20 people is 150-300 people. Everyone who comes in is encouraged to sign up on the email list to be notified about the next event (people love knowing when events happen, even if they can’t attend) and you’ll begin building your email list.

Make Artfulchange core events a regular thing, at least 4 times a year, but for momentum in the first year I’d suggest every other month. These core events are the constant for the Artfulchange brand. Other events and happenings can fall perfectly in between where Artfulchange is a promotional partner, sponsor, etc. The important thing is for Artfulchange to establish itself with something easy for people to understand: Events (in this case).

Best of luck! 🙂

Noel Chandler CEO/Co-Founder, Mosio

Have some suggestions of your own? We’d love to hear from you. Let us know in the comments…

Experiential Marketing Examples: Hayes Valley Farm

December 22, 2010
What kind of guerrilla or experiential tactics could we use to promote our Winter Wonderfarm Session 2 to the community?  We’re hoping to get lots of kids to go, and being able to get more people at our events.  Thanks, Jay

Hayes Valley Farm is an urban farming project in San Francisco whose mission is to serve as a community and agricultural hub for residents to connect with one another, grow their own food, and learn about sustainable ecological systems. We put their question about how to utilize experiential marketing in promoting their events to our industry panel.

Notes: While the short time before the event happens makes marketing the Winter Wonderfarm more difficult, there is still a lot that can be done. Also, while these suggestions are event-specific, many of can be tweaked to apply to future seasonal events.

Here’s what our industry panel said:

Christian Jurinka’s Attack!

1.  Create a mobile garden showing the life-cycle of gardening from planting, to seeding to harvest to your plate.  Take this mobile experience on the road to parks, rec centers, libraries (to coincide with kids librarian book reading times), and even daycare facilities.  Target the communities in close proximity of Hayes Valley initially then expand out.

2.  In addition to your for-pay program, start a 1 hour session that happens during the week as an introductory to childrens gardening.  Publicize this as a free event to the SF publications and mommy/nanny networks.  This should increase buzz about your organization, get more people through the door and will ultimately bring more paying patrons through the door as well.

3.  Partner with local restaurants to have some of the food that is produced be used by their restaurants, with the hook that they list you as a source on their menus.

4.  Have existing patrons take photos with their children in front of a Hayes Valley Farms branded sign or backdrop.  Encourage them to post to Facebook about the great experience.

Christian Jurinka, Managing Partner at Attack!


Andrew Loos’s Attack!

Tap into seasonal sentiment and connect with families while they’re out on holiday-themed activities.

Try this: Partner with local Christmas tree lots/vendors to see if you can set up an information booth or hand out colorful fliers on upcoming workshops.  Help tie the trees to the cars (this will save the lot money and give you a captive audience). Engaging with families in this setting will help them think of your community workshops as a holiday tradition, and not just as a “one-and-done” event.  If you can get Mom, Dad and the kids associating Winter Wonderfarm with buying the Xmas tree, sledding or other holiday “sentimental” activities, you’re looking at return customers and positive community word-of-mouth all year round.

Andrew Loos, Attack! Managing Partner


Noel Chandler’s Attack!

I go by Hayes Valley Farm on my way home from work every day and always enjoy reading the signs on their fence made by kids.


I would make up a few Pull-Tab Posters using the artwork from those signs to play up the fact that the camp is for kids.  Hang the posters in local merchant windows on Hayes Street (they’ll all say yes to something for kids) and as close to the French American School as possible, as well as the park in Hayes Valley.  If they have extra volunteers, place posters up in Noe Valley stores (lots of parents), Natural Food Stores (Whole Foods, Rainbow Foods, etc) and Gardening Supply Stores.

  1. The posters should quickly explain the Event, Dates, Ages and a great call-to-action like: “Sign Up Now for our seasonal day camp for KIDS, inspiring connection to growing food, community, and compost piles of fun! (Space is Limited so Call/Email Soon!)”
  2. The Pull-Tabs should contain as much info as possible: Event Name, Dates, Ages, Web URL, Email, Phone #.
  3. Always tear off one or two of the tabs in the middle.

As soon as possible, send out a quick email to those who have signed up to get them excited for the event, but also to let them know that space is limited, so if they have any friends who are interested to have them sign up as soon as possible. An existing customer is your best way to spread the word, so ask for their help.

Plus, parents are busy people, so there are bound to be some who meant to send info to a friend they told about the camp and forgot. This email is their reminder and opportunity to forward it on. Remember that by making the email exciting to those who are already attending, you’re selling all of the excitement to those who are getting the email forwarded to them. Make sure the subject line sells both the excitement and a helpful hint to forward it to friends.

Noel Chandler CEO/Co-Founder, Mosio

Have some suggestions of your own? We’d love to hear from you. Let us know in the comments…

5 Guerrilla Insights Into the Future of Location Based Services

August 20, 2010

“There are three things that matter in property: location, location, location.” — Lord Harold Samuel, British real estate tycoon

It’s always been true in real estate, and it’s becoming more and more important in social networking. 2010 was widely hailed as the year that Location-based services would come of age, and that prediction seems to be hitting home. Just this week, Facebook rolled out Places and then acquired Hot Potato, Foursquare grew toward 3 million users, and Groupon, the champion of local deals has grown from virtual obscurity to a valuation of more than $1B. What is driving all of this is the proliferation of smartphones that can run all these geo-services. Nielsen pegs that number at  45 million U.S. users, or 21% of all wireless subscribers, and it’s obvious that location-based services are moving from the backyard into the living room. Incidentally, that number is expected to go to 50% of all wireless subscribers by year end.

Here’s a Check-In with Location & What it Means for the Guerrilla and Experiential World

1. Facebook Places: This week’s activation of Places is a gigantic step forward in location-based services. Foursquare had almost 3 million users. Facebook has almost 500 million. And now they’re all enrolled in Places. There will be some backlash about privacy and people not wanting to announce where they are to the whole world, but hundreds of millions of people will begin using and adapt to the service. Then there will be a wave of apps, followed by the marketers.

Guerrilla: It’s a whole new level for concepts like the flash mob. Imagine hundreds of people all checking in to the same spot and having those check in’s announced to their friends.

2. Hot Potato: Hot Potato is a service that optimizes location-based check-ins. You don’t  just check-in at a place, you check-in at what you’re doing. Instead of the concert venue, you check in at a specific concert. Instead of a club, you check in at a specific party at that club. And everyone who checks-in at that event will be able to comment to each other. Up until now it’s been very limited in users, but now that Facebook has acquired Hot Potato, look for their live event and real-life check-ins to integrate with Facebook’s new Places feature in the coming months.

Guerrilla: Hot Potato’s approach could be revolutionary for live events, especially teamed up with Facebook. Combining their event-specific check-ins with Facebook’s userbase gives live events the kind of reach and exposure possibilities that small businesses get on Twitter.

3. Coca Cola Village: This project is on the front lines of online/offline integration. Coca-Cola built a branded amusement park and invited thousands of teenagers throughout the summer. While there, they wore RFID bracelets that allowed them to post to their Facebook Wall where they were and “Like” things in the Village. Over 35,000 shares. And this was before “Places.”

Guerrilla: Whether you think checking into Places with an RFID bracelet (soon to be smartphone, I’m sure) is eerily Orwellian or futuristically awesome, it’s looking like a safe bet that people are becoming comfortable with announcing where they are, especially if there’s an incentive attached. That has so many guerrilla, experiential and event possibilities, I could start a separate blog.

4. Group Tabs: Groupon made over $11 million in nationwide sales for a 1-day offer this week for The Gap. What does that have to do with location, you ask? Pay a virtual visit to Group Tabs, the location-based service that combines “check-ins” with Groupon-style group purchasing. As an example of what they do, let’s say they offer a half-off coupon at Joe’s Bar once 10 people “check-in” at a Friday Happy Hour. Or 25% off of dinners if 20 people “check-in” at Olive Garden. You get the idea. Right now they’re just in New York City, but the concept will catch on quickly.

Guerrilla: This is an ideal integration with a street team or flyering campaign. Imagine offering a 50% off deal for a new bar during a Happy Hour, then sending out a street team to announce the deal to people walking by. Or a museum hosting a discount day on a Saturday with a street team out announcing it to families.

5. The Future: In the crystal ball, I see Facebook Places + Group Tabs + some way of checking with your smartphone (Barcode? Bump app?) being part of how we do our recreational thing in the summer of 2011. What about you?  How about instead of those silly beepers they give you at the Cheesecake Factory while you wait, you check-in at your restaurant automatically.  The possibilities will make your head spin as does the data derivations.

Photo Credit: BuzzFeed

Business Across Borders

August 3, 2010

Marco Polo

Global? Local? Glocal?

Business is global, and the world IS shrinking. No longer are we Marco Polo, voyaging for something new, in the wild, wild east. Today’s business can be conducted in 10 different countries simultaneously.

Web Conferencing, Skype, Instant Messaging, Google Docs: these are all tools that allow two or more parties to occupy the same mental space while being worlds apart.

It is truly exciting. But there is peril. There is risk.

I’ll be part of a panel on just these issues later this week on Thursday, August 5th in San Francisco. To hear more about how it was and how it is to do business globally, come and enjoy the Business Across Borders event, brought to you by Inc Magazine and DHL.

Christian Jurinka

Photo Credit: iwatchstuff

Online-Offline Integration in Experiential Marketing

August 3, 2010

“The future is always beginning now.” ~Mark Strand

Last night I checked the train schedule on my computer before heading home, checked in on Foursquare from the burrito shop near my house, then bought a movie ticket from Fandango and flashed my phone to the ticket checker at the theater to gain entrance. I love this stuff, and I think it will be amazing to see where we’ll be in 10 years. I’m thrilled to work in the event and experiential industry, where we’re constantly pushing the envelope of cool ways to integrate new technologies.

I share workspace with a guy named Jon who says that online-offline integration is just a fancy way of saying that people use the Internet as part of their daily lives. He’s got a point- it is becoming more and more normal to use the Internet or a smartphone to do day-to-day things and integrate our own online and offline lives.  But that’s not the whole story, even in the experiential marketing space. There are still plenty of campaigns that either ignore technology, or think that social media can do it alone.

I looked up “integrate” on the online Merriam-Webster dictionary, and they define it as “to form, coordinate, or blend into a functioning or unified whole” and “to incorporate into a larger unit.”  To me, that’s the exciting part about online-offline integration in the event and experiential marketing space. Two years ago it was cutting-edge to have tweets on the side wall at your conference or a Facebook Fan Page where your fans said they loved you, but those were extras, not necessarily blended into the functioning of a unified whole in a conference or campaign.

Many mistakes and successes later, conferences and brands are starting to truly pursue online-offline integration that creates the “unified whole” or “larger unit.” The last conference I went to had audience members tweet questions for panelists on a separate #hashtag- it worked marvelously. Much better than distracting tweets on the wall, or having someone run around with a microphone. Pepsi took their 2010 Super Bowl ad budget and created the hugely successful Refresh Everything campaign, integrating corporate sponsorship, cause marketing, online voting, and offline events.

We’ve been doing our share of offline/online integration at Attack! this year. Here’s a sample:

  1. Street Team Buzz Marketing: We integrated social media into a nationwide couponing campaign from Jamba Juice. Dozens of street teams were handing out $1 off coupons, and we were tweeting out links to a printable one at the same time, along with pictures and locations of street teams. Over 80,000 impressions and hundreds of redeemed coupons.
  2. Underground Book Club: We’re doing a project right now that gets regular people “Advanced Reading Copies” of books before they hit stores- just like book reviewers get. We host a Facebook Fan Page with book discussions, use a slew of multi-media surprises that bring the book to life and get the author involved with fans, and host offline events that let people put faces to screen names. It’s a social media book club that celebrates the offline
  3. RaffleDog.com: This isn’t ours, but I love the idea and we were part of a raffle there last week. It’s a free online raffle that gives a nod to the classic archetype: the fishbowl. They raffle off a new item every week: to enter, you tweet, post or share about them, and then they pick the winner from a fishbowl live on the Internet.

From stumbling pieces to an unified whole and a larger unit- all very real and very cool. It’s still growing, but the online/offline integration in the event and experiential space is here to stay. To prove the point, stop in our offices next time you’re in town to say hi.  Tell us you got invited in a blog post.

Photo Credit: Tixu Oty

How PR Stunts Keep You Competitive

June 23, 2010

Just a spoonful of sugar...

“A spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down… medicine go down… medicine go down… Just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down, in the most delightful way!” – Mary Poppins

Nothing beats marketing with a little bit of fun. Mary Poppins knew that there’s no harm in adding a little fun to make sure the job gets done, and it’s the same in marketing. Often, the art is pointing out why what you sell is better than what your competitors sell. If you’re a smaller company, it can be hard to get that message out there. PR stunts, like any good guerrilla tactic, hit where it counts and have a big impact.

Attack! recently worked with SugarCRM, a company that makes sales software similar to Salesforce.com. Sugar CRM created a book called “Behind the Smokescreen,” a full-size book with just 6 tiny chapters, each one succinctly pointing out why Sugar is better than Salesforce.com. We printed up 1,000 copies and gave them out to people arriving at “Dreamforce 09: The Cloud Computing Event of the Year,” Salesforce.com’s big annual conference in San Francisco.

You want press? There’s this glowing article about how smart they are in Newsweek. You want sales leads? Here’s what Chris Harrick, vice president of marketing at SugarCRM told Newsweek: “By 10 a.m. we had 1,500 hits on our Web site, and by noon we had four qualified sales opportunities. If we close even one deal, our ROI on this guerrilla marketing campaign will be two- or three-fold.”

And with that, here are…

5 Ways That PR Stunts Keep You Competitive

  1. Be On The Offensive – Geo-targeted mock protests or flash mobs make a scene right where you want it. Pick the right moment and you can utilize your competitor’s marketing dollars and PR push by hijacking their events.
  2. Be the Underdog – If you can’t compete dollar for dollar, stunts are a great way to punch through to your audience and make a million dollar impact with only tens of thousands.
  3. Be Funny – PR Stunts allow you to be more irreverent, funny and human than just about any other kind of marketing. After all, the whole point is doing something to get attention and snap people to attention!
  4. Be Memorable – A PR stunt is ideal for reinforcing your consistent campaign messaging through a live, unique touch-point. A good PR stunt thrives on WOM, demands attention and can live on for long periods of time online when captured on video.
  5. Be Affordable. Publicity stunts most of the time involve people. Fortunately the “people-part” of programs are usually the most budget-friendly element.

    Photo Credit: Babble

    Why You Need Guerrilla Postering in Your Marketing Strategy

    June 9, 2010

    When I was a kid my room was covered with posters- I remember Dominique Wilkins doing a windmill dunk, the Ramones with guitars, and one with Jim Morrison and lyrics from American Prayer. I loved those posters, and the images on them have stuck with me. As I grew up, I would still bring home posters from events to remind me of the experience, and eventually I made my own posters for events that I was part of. Postering for a guerrilla campaign does all of those things- offering memorable images and something to carry home- and more. It’s one of the most direct and versatile options that retains effectiveness even as it evolves to work with new media. Watch the first half of this video to see postering in action and the second half to see how it integrates. Then keep reading for 5 reasons why you need Guerrilla Postering…

    1. Geographic Micro-targeting

    Postering allows you to choose highly targeted groups of people to see your messaging. You can hang them right outside particular restaurants, subway stations, concert venues, or any other location where the people you want to know will be. 21st Century Breakdown spans age-brackets and defines the evolution of punk- where better to reach the many ages of punk than New York City.

    2. High-Quality Handouts & Take-Aways

    Anytime you have posters, you need to have lots of them and you need to give them away. Encouraging the audience to take the posters promotes involvement. In the video for Green Day’s 21st Century Breakdown, you see dozens of people turn their heads for the neon chalk stencil or stop to watch the guerrilla projection. Those people took home posters, and every time they look at that poster they’ll remember that experience at Union Square.

    3. Commuter touch-point

    Postering carries the original guerrilla torch of speaking to people with a unique, meaningful message when they aren’t expecting it- and putting them in high-traffic areas only makes sense. Blanketing busy urban areas in New York City offers a subtle call to action for people while they’re en route to work, lunch, subway, etc.

    4. SMS Integration

    Postering is a great vehicle for “text-to” campaign promotions. Add your “text-to” code to the poster and you catch the people with a subtle call to action on consistent postering campaign. This is especially effective in urban commuter campaigns like the Green Day campaign in New York.

    5. Social Media Integration.

    It can jumpstart any viral, social media aspect of the campaign. We have had consistent success with promoting contests, trivia and Facebook Fan Page aspects of campaigns. As event and guerrilla promotion continue to grow up with the Internet, online/offline integration will become more frequent.

    Posters have been around long before guerrilla marketing was a concept but have become a stand-by, versatile guerrilla tactic. Whether as the key element or an integrated aspect, postering should be part of your next guerrilla marketing strategy. Green Day doesn’t sell millions of albums without knowing what they’re doing.