Experiential Answers (part one of a series)

Brand X magazine reader questions answered by Sally Durcan, MD, Hotcow

1. Should I trust an experiential agency to handle in accordance with the
Data Protection Act?

The simple answer is yes you can. As an agency we have a legal obligation to keep up to date on the laws and regulations that affect our services and our clients business. In relation to collecting and handling personal data this is no different especially as this type of data collection is normally linked to a competition, the competitions details and process would be run through someone like the Institute of Promotional Marketing to also sign off an agree. It would be agreed with the company on how they want the data handled and delivered back to them such as; in hardcopy or via PDA updates, live on-site sign ups or simply drive to website communication.

2. Do experiential agencies have access to mature people who can represent
my brand (i.e. aged 30-60)?

Yes. If companies have specific requirements such as a lady in her 60’s, with long brown hair that has had children we might often look to search outside our existing database and employ specifically for the role. This would require a recruitment and training process.

3. Do QR codes have a place in brand experience marketing?

Absolutely these are becoming more popular to use as they are easy to set up for the client and easy for the customer to grab information quickly. Not to mention it is much cheaper way of dissemination information.

4.  What agency selection pitfalls are there?

Here are 3 to get started.

1. Know what type of EM agency you need to employ and why as this will greatly affect your end results. For example do you need strategy or staffing as the key element in your campaign? Whilst most agencies offer a full service everyone has a core capability with a specific strong point – know what is and ensure it matches your required outcomes.

2. Know what type of people are going to be representing your brand and know they have been trained adequately. This will save hassle and issues in the future.

3. Leave adequate time to brief your agency the shorter the time line the less ability everyone has a great response and it will become more reactional to your requirements.

5. Are procurement teams good or bad for agencies?Can be both. Bad from the perspective that it doesn’t give brand and marketing managers flexibility to choose the agency and team they want to work with. Ultimately different agencies suit different requirements of a brief and stonewalling this creativity and flexibility can ultimately reduce overall effectiveness and brand goodwill purely because of internal process. Good because it can provide a structured environment for companies to know what type of agencies they are working with and ensure the service deliverables work out.

For more insight from Hotcow including the Mootalk blog visit www.hotcow.co.uk

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