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Understanding human behavior, particularly consumer behavior in marketing, is one of the major keys to success as a business owner or manager. It’s the starting point for all sales and business and one of the best indicators measuring marketing success, whether you are intentional about it or not. When you understand what motivates, compels, or persuades people to make or decline certain purchases, you can better meet your consumers’ wants and needs and have more successful outcomes.

For example, experiential marketing allows your brand to connect with customers through a shared experience such as a live event, concert, trade show, pop-up store, and more. Some experts believe that it will continue to impact future trends in marketing significantly. Effective experiential marketing campaigns create a positive and memorable event that creates loyalty, excitement, and desire for a specific brand.

Consumer behavior is a broad topic that spans psychology, biology, chemistry, economics, and sociology and includes numerous models and theories that often require both qualitative (experience- or personal-based) and quantitative (numbers-based) data. This article explores a few of these theories in economics and psychology and dives into experiential marketing as a valuable and effective tool to attract and retain customers. The case study explored here is located in Los Angeles, California, a vibrant market for experiential marketing events due to its location, weather, and population.

The Psychology Behind Consumer Behavior in Marketing

Understanding consumer emotions and motivations is critical to marketing success. However, there are a myriad of theories and information on this subject, and it can be overwhelming if you don’t know where to start. First, understand your target market, including their age group, interests, motivations, and needs. Consumer behavior is affected by the product or service that you sell, so think about how your consumers and potential consumers need or want your product. Economists use four traditional consumer behavior models to understand a consumer base better. They are the learning model, the psychoanalytical model, the sociological model, and the economic model.

The Learning Model

The learning model believes that buyers are motivated to satisfy needs. These needs are defined by Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, which separates needs into basic needs, psychological needs, and self-fulfillment needs. As a company, you can ensure and market toward the needs of your consumers. Experiential marketing often meets the psychological and self-fulfillment needs of their clients.

The Psychoanalytical Model

The psychoanalytical model theorizes that consumers are driven by conscious and unconscious deep-rooted motives to make purchases. Thus, your marketing must appeal to their inner desires to be effective. Often, experiential marketing taps into unconscious innate desires; attendees can’t explain why they love the experience, but it taps into something that relates to them deeply.

The Sociological Model

The sociological model states that purchases are influenced by a person’s status in different social groups, including family, friends, and co-workers. Experiential marketing particularly taps into this model because the experience is often shared with social groups, and other attendees’ behaviors will influence your potential consumers. The economic model states that consumers will try to meet their needs while spending as little money as possible. Experiential marketing is directly tied to this model, providing products and experiences for very little money, which draws a large crowd.

Psychological Triggers That Affect Customer Engagement

Experiential marketing also taps into psychological triggers that affect customer engagement, including:

  • The novelty factor
  • Inspiring curiosity
  • Reciprocity
  • The snob effect
  • The conformity phenomenon
  • And more!

Experiential marketing is particularly effective in influencing consumers due to the role of sensory experiences in engagement. When consumers attend an experience, all five senses are often engaged, making your brand more impactful and memorable.

Experiential Marketing Event - LA Rams football team and cheerleaders in front of So-Fi stadium in Los Angeles, California

Experiential Marketing Case Studies in Los Angeles

There are multiple successful experiential marketing case studies in Los Angeles due to the city’s great year-round weather, numerous and varied venues for guests, and a diverse population base that includes influencers, celebrities, and high-income earners. Los Angeles marketing trends are projected to keep growing in the future.

Southport Marketing’s L.A. Rams Super Bowl sendoff was one highly successful experiential marketing campaign that reached over 12,000 fans and provided a positive marketing opportunity to build buzz around the SoFi Stadium and generate incremental seat license sales for the new stadium. Southport Marketing only had five days to put together this massive event and was able to procure all city approvals, parking, and security. The project was put together on time and within budget and met all deliverables with excellent coordination and communication from multiple teams. The result was an electrifying and safe experience that let fans send off their team in style and check out the new stadium for the following year. This heightened brand visibility and excitement for future games, which met multiple psychological triggers to affect customers positively.

Challenges and Solutions

Experiential marketing is highly effective in engaging consumers and building brand loyalty through experiences, but there are also challenges. Some of the common challenges include:

  • Missing The Mark: This happens when you fail to create an experience that resonates with customers.
  • Failing to Track ROI Accurately: This happens when you fail to track or budget expenses or do not measure your ROI after an event.
  • Being Overcome with Logistics: This happens when you need more resources or experience to create a successful experiential event and end up spending inefficiently or failing to meet customers’ expectations.

One of the surest ways to overcome these obstacles and enhance effectiveness is to hire a professional experience marketing agency. Experiential marketing agencies like Southport Marketing partner with businesses to curate effective, memorable experiences that hit the mark with customers. Together, they strategize with you to define goals and budget and then track costs and returns. Marketing agencies know the local culture in marketing and the importance of the psychology of engagement in your event. They also handle the logistics and planning, which saves time, money, and hassle.

The Future of Experiential Marketing

Experiential marketing will continue to be an essential marketing technique in the future. Event technology has had a marked effect on this type of marketing due to social media. It is easier than ever before for customers to see experiential campaigns and want to experience them, either because of the sociological model or psychological triggers like the fear of missing out, the snob effect, the novelty factor, inspiring curiosity, and more. Experiential marketing will continue to be shaped by technology and online social connections.

Engaged customers at Experiential Marketing Event in Los Angeles sponsored by Alaska Airlines - Technology enhances consumer experiences

Southport Marketing: The Experiential Marketing Agency that Understands Los Angeles Consumer Engagement

Understanding consumer psychology in Los Angeles’s experiential marketing landscape is vital to the success of your business. Southport Marketing is a full-service experiential marketing agency in Los Angeles, CA that creates unforgettable brand experiences that highlight your business in the best ways. Contact us today for powerful, creative, experiential marketing solutions highlighting your brand values with nationwide reach.