New year, new predictions! Consumers are in for a super creative year in brand experience, as marketers get to adopt and apply the emerging technologies that blew our minds in 2023. Here’s what our pros are looking forward to the most.
As technology empowers us, brands will craft experiences that surpass mere sight and sound. Imagine entering an experience for a perfume brand, there is an interactive display pulsing with the colors of flowers detected in the scent of the perfume in the air, instruments begin to play corresponding to the pulse of the flowers, you reach out and touch the flowers that have texture to bring them to life and you are handed a sweet chocolate that is infused with the flavors of the perfume. Brands are poised to create synesthetic experiences that tap into multiple senses, thereby forging deeper emotional connections.
– Fred Shank, SVP Brand Experience
PULL VS. PUSH
The ultimate dream is for consumers to seek out brand interaction, instead of the other way around, and 2024 could be the year for that as brands provide access to tech-supported experiences that consumers crave and can’t necessarily purchase. After all, Apple’s Vision Pro is going to cost around $3,500. It’s one thing to put on a headset and “feel like you’re there,” but 2024 will push us to places consumers never even knew they could go. Through AI, augmented reality, and tech in general, Experiential is begging for groundbreaking, never-before activations that will leave consumers craving more… more wearables… more of an experience, creating a deeper impression. Gives me goosebumps to even think about it!
– Ali Delzell, SVP Experience
The humble QR code will continue to surprise. They’re moving into jersey patches, and we’ll surely see them on the Las Vegas Sphere and in creative implementations in event executions. Imagine MAX and “Friends” partnering to roll out a promotion for the show’s 30th anniversary this year, where you can visit Central Perk. How would you integrate massive amounts of content without throwing off the look and feel of the space? You got it: QR codes. Scan and see what coffee your favorite character ordered the most, with a personalized message to thank you for being a fan. Access episodes, read background stories, or watch interviews and outtakes, or link to Matthew Perry’s book. The simple QR Code completes the consumer journey, and deserves our full consideration.
– Matt Levitan, Account Manager, Experience
Imagine engaging with a chatbot that can detect that you’re having a stressful day and tailors its tone and content to empathize with you while offering the help you’re after. In 2024, we will see experience creators utilizing the ever-advancing realm of artificial intelligence (AI) to create experiences that extend beyond a personalized engagement and into an emotional engagement. Alongside generative AI capabilities, emotional and personalization modals will enable brands to emphasize with us in real-time to create a deep and lasting connection.
– Monty Lack, Sr. Director, Interactive Experience
Augmented and virtual reality have been most closely tied to the gaming industry, but these technologies will broaden, pushing brands to make more of an enriched connection with their audiences in all aspects of life. We’ve seen virtual music experiences in Fortnite and Roblox, and we’ll see more immersion into that experience. What if you’re able to attend a music festival from your couch? Brands have the opportunity to bring fans alongside festival-goers, standing in the muddy audience, hanging out in the back, or even pushing through to the front to see the artists up close and to feel the vibrations of the music. While AR/VR are still expensive and progressing, these tactics will become more of an expectation from consumers in the future.
– Sami Barnett, Sr. Director, Gaming
I’m excited to see hybrid events continue to grow in scale, inclusivity, and immersion over the next year while our industry reaches its technological renaissance. As brands embrace digital extensions, leveraging XR, AI, and other cutting-edge technologies, they will create immersive experiences that not only capture attention but leave an indelible mark on the hearts and minds of consumers. AR and VR technology will take center stage allowing brands to transport consumers anywhere including captivating environments that transcend boundaries everywhere. The future is digital, interactive, and personalized – a journey where technology becomes the canvas for unforgettable brand stories.
– Ryan Krahn, Sr. Interactive Producer
TMA executes thousands of brand experiences per year for clients including Wendy’s, State Farm, Nintendo and U.S. Army.