I came across this interesting mobile tour/sampling event at my local grocery store here in Austin last week put on by Gardenburger, the vegetarian burger makers. Overall, the brand experience was engaging, the footprint attention grabbing and the brand ambassadors nice and outgoing.
Mission accomplished, right?
Well, yes and maybe no, depending on who you ask. In light of this and the many brand tours our agency has put on the road, I thought I would share just a few best practices of Mobile Tours.
Deliver your brand experience at all consumer touchpoints.
Signage, consumer activity, props, brand ambassador uniforms and scripts, etc. Gardenburger did a great job of branding their event elements and ensuring that their entire experience communicated “garden goodness”.
Fabricate so that your setup is as simplified as possible.
While the Gardenburger footprint is great looking, it’s definitely a complicated setup. Staffers told me it takes them 2 hours to set up and 2 hours to tear down for a 2 hour store event. In 100+ degree Texas heat, that seems like a lifetime and honestly, a bit unnecessary. More importantly though, it reduces the amount of customer engagement. Shortening the setup and tear down time would have given them the opportunity to execute 3 events in a 12 hour day instead of 2. That’s a 33% increase on ROI before you even drive the vehicle out of your fabricator’s shop.
Keep an eye on the weather and be able to adjust on a dime.
Again, heat, rain, wind storms….they should always be considered and contingency plans put into place. In the case of this Gardenburger event, moving the sampling portion of the activation inside would have definitely made a greater impact. It was, quite frankly, too hot to outside enjoy the tasty veggie patty morsel, much less participate in any other activities they might have had planned, while standing on black asphalt at this location. If that wasn’t possible, misters would have been nice. 🙂
Close the sale whenever possible.
Giving a coupon out in the parking lot is great, but how can you encourage day of purchase? Positioning brand ambassadors inside the store is one way, purchase incentives another. Close the sales loop.
Look for PR opportunities to leverage your beautiful footprint and investment.
Brand Managers should try to leverage your marketing investment as far as possible across departments. Partner with your PR team and/or media teams and come up with a way to extend your reach. For example, on this tour they could have invited local news teams to utilize your footprint as a backdrop to their weather-casts.
These are just a few ideas to consider as you plan and execute your next mobile marketing tour. I applaud Gardenburger’s efforts and hope that it did indeed pay off for them!