Experiential Marketing: 10 Proven Ways to Get Stakeholder Buy-in

September 3, 2019

Amy Kelley

Amy Kelley is the Global Digital Content Marketing Editor at GES. With a strong background in content marketing, social media and communications, she is a passionate writer and self-confessed word geek. Amy is also the founder of a non-profit and a health and wellness online community.

Experiential marketing is one of event planning’s hottest trends right now. According to the site Statista, 74 percent of consumers said they were more likely to purchase products promoted by eventsand 93 percent of them claimed that live events had a larger influence on them than TV ads. But experiential marketing can be expensive. Take these 10 steps to secure stakeholder buy-in and support. 

1. Set an Appointment to Ensure All Decision Makers Are Present 

Don’t catch your stakeholders in the hallway and hope to “put a bug in their ear.” Make sure all decision-makers are present in your scheduled meeting, that you have necessary materials, answer individual questions and gauge interest through body language. 

2. Know Who’s Likely to Say Yes 

Know who you’ll be presenting to and whether they are likely to be champions of your idea or budget sticklers. Align your ideas with at least one person. In advance of the meeting, build consensus with at least one champion.

3. Use Examples to Sell Experiential Marketing

Using case studies and examples from other events remove your opinion from the presentation and prove the approach works for competitors and partners alike. Use statistics and include budgets to show where experiential marketing has worked. 

4. Deliver on ROI Because That’s How They’ll Measure Success

Couch all on your arguments in terms of return on investment (ROI), the ways to generate revenue, and the opportunity for innovation. Make sure your stakeholders are willing to invest their career capital as well. 

5. Shape Your Ideas Around Business Needs 

Align your ideas with the company’s vision, mission and strategies. Speak to how experiential marketing can help meet each business need.  

6. Solve a Business Problem 

Build a business case for using experiential marketing to solve a challenging problem within the company. Make sure to back up your tactics with details and financials.

7. Add Science and Data for Quicker Buy-in

Include industry data regarding experiential marketing. Use stats that talk to the shift of experiences over material goods and interaction with brands influencing purchases. 

8. Anticipate Opposition to Your Case 

Be prepared for the “what ifs” and the negatives. Have answers to counter opposition but don’t antagonize the stakeholders. Build trust by anticipating all aspects of the program. 

9. Present Options to Improve Your Chances of Yes

Present a high, medium and low budget option. Even if they choose the least expensive option, you will be getting what you want, and they will feel like they are trying experiential marketing at a safe entry-level price point. 

10. Cut Costs in Advance 

Show your stakeholders that you’ve already reduced the budget and reallocated where possible. This shows fiscal conservatism and innovation, two things stakeholders appreciate.

At the conclusion of your meeting, reiterate the top three points and give the stakeholders an easy path to approval. Just as you would keep in mind the desires of your audience when creating an experience they’ll enjoy, consider the personalities, needs and concerns of your stakeholders when trying to gain support for your experiential marketing initiative.


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Partner Voices
Dallas already boasts 35,000 hotel rooms, award-winning global cuisine, and a walkable downtown. But we are just getting started. Visit Dallas is thrilled to announce that the city of Dallas is doubling down with a massive new convention center and entertainment district. Featuring 800,000 square feet of exhibit area, 260,000 square feet of meeting rooms, and 170,000 square feet of ballroom. The center will connect business travelers with dining and shopping options in the popular Cedars District means more places to get down to business, and even more ways to unwind. “Dallas is already a great meetings and conventions destination, with the accessibility of two major airports, affordable labor, and an outstanding hotel product,” said D. Bradley Kent, Visit Dallas senior vice president and chief sales officer. “The new center and Convention Center District will enhance Dallas’ competitive position and are exactly what our customers’ need and have been asking for." What’s New – AT&T Discovery District Located in the heart of Downtown Dallas, this new district on the AT&T corporate campus is tailor-made for groups of all sizes. It boasts a multi-sensory experience, including outdoor event space, the AT&T Theater, and multiple dining outlets including JAXON Beer Garden and The Exchange, a bustling food hall. Hotels Coming Soon Names like the JW Marriott (Downtown), lnterContinental Dallas (Uptown), and Hotel Swexan (Uptown) are adding luxury amenities and bountiful event spaces. The projects will debut in 2023 and beyond. JW Marriott This new, 15-story, 283-room hotel will open in the heart of the city’s downtown Arts District this year. The property features a 25,000-square-foot grand ballroom, as well as a spa, restaurant, lobby bar, fitness center, and a rooftop pool deck and bar. InterContinental Dallas  Located in Cityplace Tower in Uptown, InterContinental Dallas will feature sweeping panoramic views of the Dallas skyline. Guests will enjoy spacious, high-end rooms and amenities, including more than 21,000 square feet of event space.   Hotel Swexan Hotel Swexan, a new, 22-story luxury property, is rising in Uptown’s Harwood District and will make its mark on the Dallas skyline. Opening this year, it is a sculptural building with cantilevered upper floors, as well as a 75-foot rooftop infinity-edge swimming pool and a hidden underground lounge.