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Brands shift towards community-focused events

Events have become a rich tool for marketing organisations. Now more than ever, the 18-35 demographic are seeking a sense of affinity with their chosen brands. 

No longer are TV campaigns, imposing billboards and targeted online advertisements sufficient in gaining the affinity of an audience. Young people are seeking experiences over material goods, with 80% of millennials reporting that they would make daily sacrifices of material or luxury goods to participate in experience-driven exercises. Why eat luxury cheese at home when you could tap into a community of cheese lovers at a festival or pop-up marketplace. It seems that as a society, we are becoming more enticed by this sense of camaraderie and shared culture, whether it be for our favourite food, beverage or technology, the events industry is thriving off of a move towards experience-driven marketing. 

Ever-popular champions of local businesses in the city, Independent Liverpool and Laces Out's pop-up events have been indicative of this growing culture. Their cuisine and culture-focused events have consolidated their brands into event-based offerings that showcase the finest independent vendors around.

It’s clear that everything from regional to global organisations are now focusing more resources than ever towards the execution of event-driven campaigns, in an effort to create a community around their brand.

The Pulse report finds that once brands have converted their audience through an experience, their customer-base is far more willing to champion their product online - placing digital marketing into the hands, and authority, of the consumer. Justin Crane, director of The Crane Event company had this to say; 

“Changing focus to include community-building and education can really engage an audience, increase uptake and encourage sharing of online content."

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Event creativity set to flourish

2018’s report also revealed that whilst many within the industry are expectant of both growth and event frequency, their budgets would remain fixed closely to those of 2017. 

An increase in marketplace competition is a clear signal of this, and will positively lead to a determined diversification of the industry. More creative events, in increasingly creative spaces will likely become the flavour of 2018, as event organisers look to take their ideas further whilst retaining the budgets of the past year. 

Accordingly, the more personable, and intimate event spaces are likely to see a rise in interest, as brands look to engage each individual customer - in a resolute effort to avoid passive marketing techniques that have characterised the past decade. When creating Hinterlands, these shifting tides were taken into consideration, producing a space that was purposefully malleable and responsive to the individual requirements of event organisers.

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A growing emphasis on technology

Playing an increasingly exciting role in this shift towards socially-minded event marketing, smart technology is set to see a sharp rise in interest in 2018. Digital content plays a pivotal role in the building of relationships between brands and their customers. 

Venues and event organisers must become responsive to these emerging requirements, with 26% of those surveyed suggesting that free Wi-Fi would enhance the experience of a venue. 

In-line with this, Hinterlands will be working closely with a number of Liverpool-based tech and digital companies to carefully integrate Wi-Fi, bluetooth and beacon technology into the venue - ensuring that event organisers can always stay connected with their customers, offering them a personal and unique experience upon each visit. 

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Venues must continue to adapt

For many event organisers, it seems the future will be distinguished by their choice of venue, with 62% of those surveyed stating that this remains the most important factor in their process. 

Accordingly, these venues must become increasingly flexible and responsive to the requirements of their customers; integrating new technologies, a range of hire packages and more dynamic approaches to event management than ever before. As a brand-new event space, located within the city’s thriving digital, creative and cultural quarter, Hinterlands recognises these requirements, holding them at the core of the venue's offer.

As the Pulse report finds, the demand for unconventional event spaces is on the rise. Technology will play a leading role in brand’s increasing aspirations to create a community of followers - dedicated and invested into their ethos. As a brand-new event space for the North West, Hinterlands is ready to adopt the findings of this year’s Pulse report into their venue. Valuable now, more than ever, is the lasting impression an event leaves on its customers. Creative and unique spaces will help foster a lasting memory in the minds of attendees.

2018 Pulse Report Key FindingsPercent of those surveyed
Expect industry growth on 201767%
Will be holding more events in 2018 than 201757%
Won't see a budget increase in 201869%
Increased competition will be the biggest impact on their events in 201831%
Cite "bringing people together" as the primary ambition of their event32%
Ranked "flexibility of space" as the key factor in their venue chice49%