Apple has long been among the world’s most innovative companies when it comes to advertising, so it goes without saying that their efforts should be closely monitored. That’s why all eyes were on Apple when they revealed that they were restructuring their relationship with their ad agency, TWBA\Media Arts Lab.
With the new arrangement, Apple will focus more effort on creating regional campaigns, as opposed to big brand campaigns that get “localized” for global markets. This new strategy is designed to appeal to the ever-changing ways in which people consume media and content, hoping that the more targeted and authentic approach will resonate more strongly with consumers.
While this move will likely have a ripple effect throughout the advertising world, it’s one that has equal merit within the fields of event marketing and experience design, as well. Today’s consumers are more discerning than ever. Whether it’s an advertisement on television or guerrilla marketing efforts on the street corner, it means nothing unless it is relevant to them personally.
This is why brands like Mtn Dew, with their DEWshine Tour, create programming tailored for individual markets. The brand spent the spring of 2015 traveling through the Carolinas, Georgia, Kentucky and Tennessee with the goal of reconnecting with their backwoods roots. Armed with an array of vehicles from the ‘30s and ‘40s, the team of DewShiners traveled throughout the South, sampling their wares out of mason jars at bluegrass festivals, sporting events and colleges — all in the interest of reaching men in the 18-24 demographic. These Southern nuances, as well as special events at a secret Florida Georgia Line concert and a NASCAR race, made the tour so successful that they added another 17 weeks to bring the DEWshine Tour nationwide.
As we saw with Mtn Dew, the nuances don’t need to be outrageous or outlandish. Rather, a simple twist on what makes each market unique is all that matters, because, ultimately, today’s consumers yearn for relevance as much as they yearn for authenticity. Now that Apple has realized this — and, consequently, shifted their strategy, the question centers around the extent which marketers can apply this learning to how they design consumer experiences.