ECCO Leather Factory Petit – Experiential marketing at its finest

Last week I had the pleasure of attending Factory Petit – An experiential marketing event hosted by a client of ours, ECCO Shoes, and their wholly owned subsidiary, ECCO Leather.

Factory Petit is just one of ECCO Leather’s “nomadic” events that happen throughout the year, and is a concept which involves a warehouse space being temporarily transformed into a living, breathing leather workshop (sans actual cows thankfully…) for a day. The space is filled with sewing machines, dyes, buttons, zippers, and shelves upon shelves stacked high with every colour, thickness, style and animal type of leather you could imagine. Cow leather, yak leather, veal leather, red leather, yellow leather… Um, well yeah you get the idea.

Media personnel are invited to come along, touch and feel the leather, and then have a go at making their own leather item, such as a handbag, clutch, wallet, or purse wallet.

At the end of the event, everything gets packed up into a large black shipping container, and shipped off to the next destination – The team was off to Japan after wrapping things up in Sydney.

Cool things we learned at the event:

  • That ECCO Leather supplies all the leather for Apple Watch straps, iPad and iPhone covers
  • They make glow in the dark leather, as well as heat sensitive leather that changes colour as it gets warmer
  • Elderflower mocktails are the biz
  • Alexander Wang is a huge fan of ECCO Leather, and uses it in his iconic handbags
  • Fashion bloggers and magazine editors are not as scary as I thought they would be

Check out some snaps from the day:

ECCO-FactoryPetit-1 ECCO-FactoryPetit-20 ECCO-FactoryPetit-19 ECCO-FactoryPetit-18 ECCO-FactoryPetit-17 ECCO-FactoryPetit-16 ECCO-FactoryPetit-15 ECCO-FactoryPetit-14 ECCO-FactoryPetit-13 ECCO-FactoryPetit-12ECCO-FactoryPetit-10ECCO-FactoryPetit-9ECCO-FactoryPetit-8ECCO-FactoryPetit-7ECCO-FactoryPetit-6ECCO-FactoryPetit-5ECCO-FactoryPetit-4ECCO-FactoryPetit-3ECCO-FactoryPetit-2

The importance of experiential marketing for online

So at Reef, we’re all about online, but the event got me thinking – There’s no doubt that a great experiential marketing event can go a long way to helping promote your brand both offline and online. There are just a few ways an IRL event can help with your online PR and SEO – SRSLY.

  • Link acquisition – In a world where nearly everyone writes/posts/blogs about almost everything they do, it makes sense to give people a reason to talk about you online. Bloggers, magazine editors were all invited to the event, with the goal of encouraging them to write about ECCO and link to them (case in point – this very blog post, although we’ll admit we’re slightly biased given that they’re our lovely client). The takeaway? Doing something newsworthy significantly helps you with getting those all-important links back to your site for organic search.
  • Social mentions – With the meteoric rise of Instagram in the past 12 months, it’s safe to say that if your brand’s not on Instagram, well then, it’s time to reassess your life choices, especially if you’re a fashion, travel, health, beauty or lifestyle brand. Experiential events are a great way to generate social buzz around your brand on social channels. See: Nike’s upcoming NTC Tour in Sydney, which will no doubt have attendees snapping and hashtagging themselves into a frenzy.
  • Consumer loyalty – Of course, at the end of the day, your customers are humans. Giving them a memorable real-world experience is going to go a long way in helping to turn someone into a lifetime customer who has a personal affinity with the brand. I can say from personal experience that there were many people at the event whose opinion of ECCO as a brand changed drastically for the better after the event, and that the hands-on nature of the day really stood out in comparison to other drab, stand-around-and-sip-champagne-politely-and-take-home-a-goodie-bag media events they often go along to.

Has your brand experimented with experiential marketing in order to help grow both your online and offline brand presence as well?

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