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What Is Experiential Marketing? 22 Examples & Takeaways



What Is Experiential Marketing? 22 Examples & Takeaways

People love to be entertained, as well as learn and experience new things. So let’s use this knowledge to build marketing experiences around our products and services.

These experiences can help us sell our products and services and fulfill specific marketing goals.

In this article, you’ll learn what experiential marketing is all about and how to execute it based on more than 20 examples.

What is experiential marketing?

Experiential marketing is a type of marketing that provides prospects or customers with real-life experiences to raise awareness, build understanding, or increase sales of products or services.

These experiences can be offline, such as live events, trade shows, demo days, or online webinars and conferences.

In recent years, thanks to virtual reality and augmented reality, more and more opportunities for experiential marketing have emerged.

However, according to Experiential Trends, 67% of consumers don’t show up for low-cost or free virtual events.


On the other hand, 75% of B2C marketers believe in-person events are vital to their success.

Let’s explore why experiences are important for marketers and brands.

Why is experiential marketing important?

Experiential marketing has become increasingly important because it allows businesses to connect deeper with customers. The key difference between experiential marketing and other types of marketing is that an experience takes place in “real” life.

The main advantages of experiential marketing include the following:

  • Raise brand awareness
  • Create search demand
  • Create a bond between a brand and its audience
  • Deliver authentic in-person experiences
  • Capitalize on the fear of missing out
  • Boost product or service trial
  • Drive sales conversions

Experiential marketing examples and takeaways

There are several types of experiential marketing campaigns, and each has its pros and cons.

Some campaigns can be applicable to any business, whereas others can only be applied to certain types of products or services. Besides a good product fit, making the choice between an experiential marketing strategy and a traditional one depends on your budget, goals, and target audience.

Let’s look at the different types of experiential marketing campaigns and see how these 22 examples can be used for inspiration. We’ll go through the following:

  • Pop-up stores
  • Co-branding
  • Solo experiences
  • Product demos
  • Product sampling
  • Tours
  • Conferences
  • Classes and workshops
  • Augmented reality and metaverse

Let’s dive into it.

Pop-up stores

A pop-up shop is where a company temporarily takes over a physical space for a short time to showcase or sell its goods and services.


Hamleys is a world-famous British toy retailer that opened a pop-up shop in London in the build-up to Christmas trading.


Along with the products it sold, the pop-up store also featured live product demonstrations and special guests.

To quote Hamleys CEO Sumeet Yadav, “Hamleys has always been about offering the very best in magical experiences for families, from making life-long memories during the festive period to finding the perfect toy for under the tree.”

Takeaways for marketers

There’s an abundance of retail space available in most cities and towns. Contact the management of shopping or town centers to explore retail opportunities.

While the costs for a one-off pop-up store could be high, they can be spread over a series of events and experiences.

Bowie 75

Bowie 75 is a retail experience celebrating legendary musician David Bowie.

A pop-up store opened in London (and New York) to enable fans to experience audio, video, and photography of his art, as well as purchase merchandise.

Homepage of the Bowie 75 website; singer David Bowie is featured reaching out to the right

Takeaways for marketers

The Bowie 75 website has an event section and sign-up form to help its team build up a database of fans, which it can use to promote future pop-up shop openings.



Co-branding is when two or more companies collaborate to create an experience that jointly benefits both brands.

Zavvi and Lego

Zavvi is an online entertainment retailer that partnered with supplier Lego, a plastic brick toy brand.

They created a pop-up store in a high-traffic Manchester (U.K.) shopping center for a month that featured Lego products that Zavvi stocked.

Takeaways for marketers

Co-branding is a win-win, especially when a retailer and supplier work together.

Ahrefs and Buffer

Tim Soulo, CMO of Ahrefs, and Brian Peters from Buffer teamed up to share strategies on getting website traffic through evergreen content (SEO) and social media marketing in a livestream.

Hosted on YouTube, the audience could interact with the hosts using the chat function and use the resources and slides provided.


Takeaways for marketers

Ahrefs and Buffer are a good fit for co-branding because their services don’t compete with each other.

Calvin Klein, Palace Skateboards, Pet Shop Boys, Willem Dafoe, and Joan Collins

Experiential marketing is about evoking experiences, and this collaboration merges nostalgic brands and products—CK One, Pet Shop Boys, Willem Dafoe, and Joan Collins—with a modern skateboarding brand, Palace.

The campaign features on the websites and social media accounts of Calvin Klein, Palace, and Pet Shop Boys.

Calvin Klein initially launched CK One in the ’90s, where a “memory comes with a scent,” and the reimagined product comes in a smaller bottle.


All co-brands will aim to leverage the opportunity to achieve their own marketing goals.

Takeaways for marketers

You’ll need a strong brand and big marketing to activate this type of campaign; it’s a risk—but a rewarding one if pulled off successfully.

Solo experiences

A solo event is where a few, rather than many, people experience a brand, product, or service.


GuitarGuitar is the largest guitar retailer in the U.K. and provides soundproof booths to allow customers to experience and try out guitars.

Customers can plug the guitar into an amp, close the door, and play as loudly as possible with other customers oblivious to the sound.

Takeaways for marketers

Solo experiences are ideal for high-ticket products, such as guitars, but probably not very practical for fast-moving consumer goods.


Philadelphia 76ers – 360 Video Booth

VIP guests were given a video booth experience at a football stadium, which they could share on their social media accounts.

Takeaways for marketers

This experience lends itself well to specific products and industries, such as sport, entertainment, and hospitality, so make sure any experience aligns with your brand values.

Product demos

A product demo is where a company lets customers try its products or services.

Wilson Golf

Wilson is a worldwide golf brand that hosted 95 product demo days throughout the U.S. in 2022, where golfers can try new golf clubs and balls and have custom-fit equipment.

Takeaways for marketers

Product demonstration tours like Wilson’s enable manufacturers to put products into the end-users’ hands while supporting their retail customers and sales.

Apple Genius Bar

Apple’s Genius Bar is another product demonstration experience where Apple’s technical staff helps customers learn how to use its products.


You’ll find a Genius Bar in most Apple retail stores. To meet with a staff member, customers need to book an appointment online.

Takeaways for marketers

Genius Bars won’t work for pile-it-high-sell-it-cheap retailers like Tesco or Walmart because Apple has positioned the in-store product experience and Genius Bar appointments as central to its premium brand strategy.

Ahrefs Enterprise

Ahrefs provides one-to-one product demonstrations, customer support, and other enterprise-level benefits for qualified leads.

Form to book a call and learn more about Ahrefs' Enterprise Form to book a call and learn more about Ahrefs' Enterprise

Takeaways for marketers

Most enterprise customers have higher expectations and more diverse needs than any other type of customer, so this example is as much about experiential marketing as it is about pricing your services.

Product sampling

Product sampling is when businesses offer free samples of their products to potential customers to promote brand awareness, generate leads, or increase sales.

Pret a Manger

Pret a Manger is a franchise of 460 sandwich and coffee shops throughout the U.K.

To promote its new coffee subscription service, consumers sampled a free flat white coffee.


Staged in a London shopping center, event staff served shoppers coffee from a branded Piaggio van.

Takeaways for marketers

There are no results for this campaign, which suggests it may not have been successful. So if you’re considering this type of campaign, be sure to implement a lead or purchase a tracking system.


Product sampling works online and in person.

Ahrefs provides several free tools that enable non-customers to sample and experience some of its marketing tools.

But the best example is Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, which helps you analyze and review your website performance and rankings while simultaneously allowing you to experience the paid-for tools.

Takeaways for marketers

The backlink checker is the second-most linked-to Ahrefs page, and the keyword generator is the 10th most-linked page.


These two tools, combined, have earned around 8,500 unique referring domains.

Best by links report results Best by links report results

Screenshot taken from Best by links report in Ahrefs’ Site Explorer.

Product sampling of online tools is an excellent tactic if you’re looking to earn backlinks and new customers.


A tour is when customers get to see a company behind the scenes and, usually, receive product or service samples.


The Guinness Storehouse is a unique brewery experience in Dublin, Ireland, where consumers can tour the brand museum, learn how to pour the perfect pint, and taste the stout beer in the rooftop bars.

Takeaways for marketers

Brand experiences like these from Guinness and Nike are the pinnacle of brand or product category leadership.


If you’re an emerging or challenger brand, this experience may not be a good fit.


Laphroaig is a brand of Scottish whiskey distilled on the island of Islay, accessible only by ferry.

Visitors can learn about the history and secrets of distilling whiskey. They can also extract their favorite “dram” from a cask to take home in a branded gift box.

Man opening Laphroaig whiskey Man opening Laphroaig whiskey

Takeaways for marketers

Laphroaig is a nostalgia or destination brand much like the rum brands from Barbados, so these experiences are ideal for tourists and brand enthusiasts.


A conference is an event where people gather to discuss their industry or profession topics.

Conferences enable people to network with other professionals in the same field.


BrightonSEO is the world’s most renowned conference for the SEO industry and brings together SEO experts and practicing search marketers.

There are live talks, in-person training, and networking events.


For example, in April 2022, besides being a headline sponsor, our own Joshua Hardwick presented the process and challenges of scaling content.

Takeaways for marketers

Presenting at a conference allows you to share your expertise and educate the audience on your topic experiences.

Having a presence as an exhibitor allows you to create more personal connections with your fans and target audience.

Craft + Commerce

Craft + Commerce is an in-person and virtual three-day conference held by ConvertKit that brings content creators together to experience keynote speeches, workshops, and meetings.

Income is generated from ticket sales and event sponsors.

Takeaways for marketers


ConvertKit markets the conference superbly to its customer base. You’re made aware of the conference on its website and within the application. You’ll also receive regular emails with information on the conference benefits and key speakers.

However, an own-brand conference requires a huge investment in planning, time, and budget.

Classes and workshops

A workshop or class is an event hosted anywhere by an expert who teaches a small number of people how to make or do something practical.

Vivrant Winter Camp and Jägermeister

During lockdown, Swedish record label Vivrant created a “Winter Camp” to connect record label artists with fans.

The online experience provided fans with an insight into the creative process, live Q&As, and live sets from the musicians.

Jägermeister sponsored this experience as part of its “Save The Night” campaign.

The head of the record label explains the experience in this video.


Takeaways for marketers

This type of campaign allows your audience (or fans) to get up close and personal and form a close connection with the people behind the brand.

Kirstie’s Flowers – Local florist

Kirstie’s Flowers is a local florist in my hometown that converted part of its retail space to host flower arrangement evening classes for customers.

These classes don’t cannibalize product sales—quite the opposite. They generate interest and business for flower arrangements required at weddings and large events.

Exterior of Kirstie's Flowers' shop Exterior of Kirstie's Flowers' shop

Takeaways for marketers

Even the smallest of businesses can implement experiential marketing, as demonstrated by this local florist.

Use your existing property, leverage your customer base, and create workshops that align with your product or service.

With free booking and appointment tools available from Google and Calendly, you can gauge interest for a class or workshop before actually staging these events.


SparkToro Office Hours

An audience research tool, SparkToro, hosted an online workshop to demonstrate how content marketers could improve their ROI using its software.

In the session, over 1,400 people attended a live workshop where they could ask questions, interact with the hosts, and receive workshop assets such as video recordings, checklists, and presentation slides post-event.

Takeaways for marketers

This workshop is a lesson for marketers who want to add value beyond a regular webinar.

During the workshop, co-founder Rand Fishkin delivered the brand personality as he taught attendees how to use his product.

Augmented reality and metaverse

Augmented reality (AR) overlays digital information onto real-world environments, such as physical objects or places in space.

AR is used to create interactive experiences where users are immersed within a virtual world.

Shopify and IKEA AR

Shopify’s AR enables online shoppers to better experience products before purchasing them.


Here’s an example of a table light using AR:

  • Visit the product page on your mobile phone
  • Select the AR button
  • Product appears on your screen
  • Move the product around and position it next to the computer

IKEA AR works similarly, but I did have some trouble positioning this office chair on my floor and not by the desktop.

Takeaways for marketers

With the online share of total retail sales at 28.9% in the U.K. and 20.7% in North America, product experience is critical to the purchasing process.

Some products, such as eyewear, are a challenge to experience online. But there’s a bright future for retailers invested in AR.

Travis Scott and Fortnite

Fortnite is a video game played on popular consoles such as Playstation and Xbox.

Musician Travis Scott collaborated with the game designer to stage a virtual concert for fans of the game.

With an estimated 12 million concert attendees, the musician earned a reputed $20 million from the performance.

Takeaways for marketers


Gaming platforms are no different from MTV of yesteryears; it’s where large audiences hang out.

There are vast audiences of gamers who play video games, so give them something to leverage your brand and increase your revenue.


Roblox is an online platform where people play games created by other users.

Nike created its own game called Nikeland for customers and gamers.

To get started, you register and then download or install the app.

Nikeland is a shared digital space where players can create their own personalized avatar, purchase clothing and accessories, participate in community events, and connect to the real world via smartphones.

As a sports brand, Nike wants its users to be active, so players can choose to play the game on their smartphones; an accelerometer in the game will track movement, such as a gamer walking into a real Nike store, where the avatar is rewarded with more superpowers.

Takeaways for marketers


Not only is Nike creating brand awareness and attracting millions of visitors to Nikeland each month, but it’s also connecting the real and online worlds of customers with this unique experience.

Final thoughts

Experiential marketing allows brands to expose customers to products and services through events, activities, and experiences rather than just ad campaigns and content.

These experiences can occur online and offline without large budgets and can build brand awareness, interest, product adoption, and sales.

Got questions? Ping me on Twitter.

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Top 6 Free Survey Maker Tools For Marketers



Top 6 Free Survey Maker Tools For Marketers

The number of online surveys has risen dramatically in the past decade, according to the Pew Research Center.

From short social media polls to lengthy feedback forms, it’s never been easier to survey your target audience and find out what exactly they’re thinking.

When it comes to free survey makers, you have plenty of options to choose from.

That’s the good news.

The bad news is you have to wade through your options to figure out the best survey tool for you.

In this article, I’ve done that dirty work for you.

Below I outline the top six free survey makers, with a simple bulleted list of their pros and cons, so you can quickly select the best one for your needs.


But first up, the caveats.

What You’re Missing With Free Survey Makers

When something’s free, there’s usually a catch. The same goes for free survey makers.

Free survey tools, or the free plan offered by a paid survey tool, often come with the following limitations:

  • Limited export options. You may not be able to export your survey data for review in Excel or Google Sheets. There may be a PDF-only export option or no export ability at all.
  • Limited analytics. Free survey tools often skimp on the analytics. You may be left to your own pivot tables and Excel expertise if you want to create anything fancy from your survey data.
  • Limited survey functionality. This runs the gamut, from a limit on how many respondents or questions you can have per survey, to only allowing so many question types (e.g., multiple-choice, long-form, etc.).
  • Limited extra perks. By perks, I mean those other features that make software from good to great. With survey makers, that might mean easy-to-access support, the ability to embed surveys in email or webpages, multiple user accounts, or integration with other email marketing or CRM software.
  • No branding. Free survey makers give you their tools for free. In return, you provide them with free brand awareness. Don’t expect to be able to swap out their logo for your own. You’ll probably be stuck with their branding, along with a prominent link to their site throughout the survey or on the thank you page (or both).

If any of the above is a dealbreaker for you, you should plan to drop a little dough on a paid survey tool. That’s why I’ve also included the starting price for all six of the tools featured below.

In case you end up having to upgrade later, it’s easier to do so from a tool you’re already familiar with.

Top 6 Free Survey Tools

Without further ado, I present the best free survey makers you’ll find today. These are listed in no particular order.

1. Google Forms

Screenshot by author, June 2022

Do you live and die by your Google Drive?

Great news: Google also offers free survey software via Google Forms.

Alright, I know I just said these were presented in no particular order, but I’ll openly admit Google Forms is my personal favorite. Just look at all of the features they include in their free plan!

All you need is a free Google account to get started.


Here’s what’s included in the free plan:

  • Unlimited surveys.
  • Unlimited questions.
  • Unlimited responses.
  • Export to Google Sheets.
  • Survey logic (ability to skip or trigger questions).
  • Ability to embed images and YouTube videos.
  • Ability to embed the survey on your website and share to social media.
  • Survey analytics, updated in real-time.
  • Integration with Google Docs, Sheets, Slides.
  • Unlimited collaborators.
  • Customizable survey templates.
  • Free branding.

What’s missing from the free plan:

  • Enhanced security and collaboration options.
  • Integration with your existing Google Workplace account.

Price: Completely free. Google Workplace pricing starts at $6 per user per month.

Best for: Anyone and everyone, for business or casual use.

2. SurveyMonkey

surveymonkeyScreenshot by author, June 2022

SurveyMonkey is the online survey tool. Established in 1999, it’s still the most well-known online survey software.

Despite the limitations of its free plans, SurveyMonkey continues to be popular thanks to its intuitive interface and brand recognition. Notable clients include Allbirds, Tweezerman, and Adobe.

One nice perk is that you can test out any of the paid features with your free plan. (You just won’t be able to actually use it in your live survey until you pay up.)

Here’s what’s included in the free plan:

  • Unlimited surveys.
  • 10 questions.
  • 15 question types.
  • 100 responses per survey.
  • Over 250 customizable survey templates.
  • Ability to embed the survey on your website.
  • Mobile app.
  • One user.

What’s missing from the free plan:

  • Unlimited questions, question types, and responses.
  • Data exports – this is a biggie!
  • Custom branding.
  • Survey logic (ability to skip or trigger questions).
  • Team collaboration.
  • Advanced security (single sign-on, HIPAA compliance).
  • A/B testing.

Price: Freemium. Paid plans start at $16 per month for individuals, $25 for teams.

Best for: Those who want a tried-and-true survey maker with all the features you could ask for.

3. Typeform

typeformScreenshot by author, June 2022

Many online survey tools are designed for the general public.

Readers of Search Engine Journal will be happy to hear that there’s a survey tool created just for us. Typeform was built specifically with marketers, UX researchers, and business owners like us in mind.

Here’s what’s included in the free plan:

  • Unlimited surveys.
  • 10 questions per survey.
  • 10 responses per month.
  • Basic question types.
  • Basic reporting and analytics
  • Ability to embed the survey on your website.
  • Integrations with MailChimp, HubSpot, Trello, Google Sheets, Zapier, and more.

What’s missing from the free plan:

  • Unlimited questions and responses.
  • Custom thank you screen.
  • Custom branding.
  • Survey logic (ability to skip or trigger questions).
  • Team collaboration.
  • Ability to accept payment.
  • Ability for survey respondents to upload files.
  • Integration with Facebook pixel and Google Tag Manager.

Price: Freemium. Paid plans start at $29 per month.

Best for: Enterprise users, UX researchers, and marketers hoping to track customer behavior.

4. Zoho Survey

zoho surveyScreenshot by author, June 2022

Zoho Survey is part of the same Zoho suite of apps that caters to sales, HR, IT, finance, and virtually any kind of business user you can think of.

Given their tenure creating SaaS software for business, their survey tool is just as robust as you might expect. Customers include big names like Netflix, Amazon, Facebook, and

Here’s what’s included in the free plan:

  • Unlimited surveys.
  • 10 questions per survey.
  • 100 responses per survey.
  • Ability to embed surveys in email or website, or share to social media.
  • Export to PDF.
  • 250 survey templates.
  • Password protection and HTTPS encryption.
  • One user.

What’s missing from the free plan:

  • Unlimited questions and responses.
  • Ability to export to XLS or CSV.
  • Survey logic (ability to skip or trigger questions).
  • Custom branding.
  • Team collaboration.
  • Real-time responses.
  • Multilingual surveys.
  • Integration with Google Sheets, Tableau, Shopify, Zendesk, Eventbrite, and others.

Price: Freemium. Paid plans start at $25 per month.

Best for: Zoho users, or anyone who needs an extra level of security for their surveys.

5. Alchemer

alchemer survey makerScreenshot by author, June 2022

Alchemer is an advanced survey maker developed for the enterprise client.

Paid features include custom coding so you can customize every single element of your survey, from the survey URL to the form logic.

They stand out among free survey makers for being one of the few (besides Google Forms) to offer unlimited questions and Excel exports in their free plan. Clients include Disney, Salesforce, Verizon, and The Home Depot.

Here’s what’s included in the free plan:

  • Three surveys at a time.
  • Unlimited questions.
  • 100 responses.
  • 10 question types.
  • Export to Excel.
  • Customizable templates.

What’s missing from the free plan:

  • Unlimited surveys.
  • Unlimited responses.
  • Unlimited question types.
  • Survey logic (ability to skip or trigger questions).
  • Custom branding.
  • Ability to embed surveys in websites.
  • Export to PDF, PowerPoint, or Word.
  • Ability for survey respondents to upload files.
  • Survey analytics and reporting.
  • Ability to accept payment.

Price: Freemium. Paid plans start at $49 per month.

Best for: Enterprise users needing to create long surveys with advanced logic and question types.


6. Jotform

jotform survey makerScreenshot by author, June 2022

With over 10,000 templates, Jotform takes the cake as the survey maker with the most form templates on our list.

Jotform also stands out for letting you accept payments with the free plan (although you’re limited to 10).

This popular survey maker includes clients as wide-ranging as AMC and Nickelodeon to Redfin and the American Medical Association.

Here’s what’s included in the free plan:

  • Five surveys.
  • 100 questions per survey.
  • 100 responses per survey.
  • Ability to embed surveys in email or website.
  • Export to PDF or Excel.
  • 10,000 survey templates.

What’s missing from the free plan:

  • Unlimited surveys.
  • Unlimited questions and responses.
  • Survey logic (ability to skip or trigger questions).
  • Custom branding.
  • HIPAA compliance.

Price: Freemium. Paid plans start at $29 per month.

Best for: Users who want a template for every kind of survey possible.

Which Survey Tool Will You Use?

There truly is a survey maker for everybody.

The above options are all solid choices. Which one works for you may depend on your organization’s needs and your personal preferences.

Take advantage of the free trials and see which one you like best.

More Resources:


Featured Image: Prostock-studio/Shutterstock

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