Long time, no post. After an eventful final year at university, I have successfully made it through to the end. This year has definitely been the time that I learned the most, both about myself and my course, Business and Management (Marketing). So after 14,500 words (or possibly more) of corporate reports and dissertation and 3 exams crammed into the space of 9 months or so later, I’d reached the end of my final stage of education. I’m not going to lie, I will definitely miss my uni life. *Sad face*
But anyhoo, as I was out and about with friends in Central London, I noticed banners across Regent Street; apparently Magnum are holding a special event on a Sunday which made me recall a YouTube ad about the launch of a new product line. After 3 years of studying Marketing covering as many areas and corners of the field as possible, am I sick and tired of marketing? Hell no. I decided that I must see what’s happening… although the freebies were a pulling factor too of course.
On a rare occasion, Regent Street in London closed off all traffic so that Londoners, visitors and tourists could join the Magnum street party. According to The Food & Drink Innovation Network, the marketing campaign cost Unilever £13 million.
Of course the first thing to do was to try the new Magnum line because I mean, I was purposely there just to be exposed to the experiential marketing, right? The clue is in the name. The two new products were Magnum Pink Raspberry (PINK) and Magnum Black Espresso (BLACK) so the whole street was filled with pink and black decorations which made the atmosphere much more fun to say the least. Surprisingly, the event was much more calm and organised than expected which was ultimately down to the event being well managed. Also a big shout out to the friendly and patient members of staff handing out the free ice creams because the queues were long – hope that no one got repetitive strain injury from the continuous wrist movements! Guests were generally patiently choosing which ‘personality’ they wanted to bring out – their “Playful Pink” or “Sophisticated Black” sides. Each person was also handed a leaflet where they Tweet or Instagram a photo with a certain hashtag to be entered into a competition; a great way to spread electronic word-of-mouth across multiple social media platforms.
EVENTS OTHER THAN EATING!
Activities were held on the street including a fashion catwalk show featuring brands on the street (including the likes of French Connection, Karl Lagerfeld and Juicy Couture), music performances and a Magnum Emporium where guests enter either a pink or black door which led to a floral garden and jazz club. The activities were clearly carefully selected to maintain an upbeat and engaging atmosphere – even on the cloudy London afternoon. Enough activities were taking place to keep guests busy as they browsed around which added to the special experience.
Of course, the day wasn’t completely about Magnum as other stores also seized the rare opportunity of extra visitors. For instance, themed cocktails at nearby restaurants, free popcorn (from Armani Exchange) and even toy shop Hamleys were generously dishing out free ice cream. Of course, most things such as the free popcorn had the brand stamped on the product so that people like me would post it for people like you to see. Nice and easy publicity.
Obviously the day had more activities than outlined in this post, but I didn’t get a chance to stay long enough for the rest. Still nonetheless, this was a great way of involving customers and potential customers with the Magnum brand and I’m sure families and friends enjoyed their free day out interacting with the brand that they will remember for much longer than if they simply saw an advert.
I’m glad I got this opportunity to be a part of this event because it’s made experiential marketing mean much more to me than what I already know from just reading.