Confex 2015: Big Cat Group forecasts positive future for experiential

Morgan spoke as part of Confex's marketing and communications programme
Morgan spoke as part of Confex's marketing and communications programme

Nick Morgan, chief executive of Big Cat Group, said he believes "experiential is here to stay" in a talk given to professionals at International Confex yesterday (19 February).

As part of the marketing and communications programme at the conference, Morgan’s session was entitled ‘The future of experiential - amplifying shared experiences’. He explained how changing consumer habits have impacted how experiential work is developed and what its future might hold.

"Brands are beginning to realise experiential is a serious contender to traditional advertising and PR," Morgan said. "But they need to become much more subtle, because consumers don’t like being sold to – this is why we’re seeing such a decline in sampling activity.

"People are now thirsty for immersive – they are obsessed with capturing a moment and showing off. Brands are starting to leverage this power."

Gamechangers for the sector highlighted by the chief executive, who oversees agencies House of Experience and The Fair, included greater collaboration between creative agencies and brands and a clearer measurement of ROI. He explained: "Return on investment is essential, we make sure our clients communicate their desired KPIs to us before we begin any work otherwise they can end up disappointed if a campaign doesn’t have the effect they hoped for."

He added: "There is still a lack of KPIs in the experiential world, but I imagine this will change as brands are becoming more interested and there’s more spend coming from the market."

Morgan also took the opportunity to highlight the economic benefits of experiential, citing stunts such as Sky Atlantic’s London polar bear and House of Experience's own TransferWise bath stunt as more inexpensive ways of getting publicity than traditional avenues. "When you compare the spend to activate a stunt compared to broadsheet or other traditional above-the-line advertising, it works out vastly cheaper," he said.

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