We have all experienced it. We are sat in our local multiplex waiting for the latest blockbuster to start. The room darkens and minutes later, the real world disappears and for the next 90 minutes or so, we live vicariously through our heroes on the screen. We have an out-of-body experience of sorts.

Cinema, theatre and other immersive activities fulfil a need for us to be somewhere or someone else. As pervasive surround technology has matured, it has altered our experience of escapism. Audiences are now active participants, rather than passive viewers.

Marketers are starting to realise the power of experiential entertainment, as it has the ability to provide that most elusive and sought-after return on investment – a long-term emotional connection. When people are being entertained, they are happy, positive, more inclined to share their experience and more likely to try something new. It’s an incredible state of being, which, if harnessed and used sensitively, can be exceptionally powerful for brands.

Once the sole domain of theme parks; it now seems that every part of the media landscape is becoming experiential, and there is a good deal evidence of this behavioural and content media shift;

  • Cinema and home entertainment are becoming hyper-sensory, thereby extending our sense of disbelief. This is due in part, to the introduction of multi-sensory, ‘4DX’ technology, which augments the filmic experience with environmental effects such as seat motion, mist, wind, and scents.

  • Transmedia, sophisticated multiplatform storytelling embeds us into imaginary fictional story worlds. By surrounding us with a sea of content, it reaches out to us across our plethora of personal digital devices and channels
  • There is also a growing trend for personalized life-games, which is evident from the popularity of live escape games, such as Hint Hunt, ClueQuest and Claustrophilia. From loyalty points to leader boards, they draw us into a parallel, social game world.

These emergent forms of experiential entertainment are starting to touch on virtuality, singularity and even transhumanism as we choose entertainment that fools our minds into out-of-body, matrix-like experiences.

If you’re looking for a point of differentiation from your competitors and seeking a credible, ownable asset; then there are few avenues that offer up an opportunity in the way entertainment does.

At Hotcow, we make it our business to stay ahead of the trends. With over fifteen years experience in the experiential market, we are well placed to help you create innovative and impactful experiential campaigns, with entertainment at the heart.

Hotcow is a non-traditional creative agency that specialises in experiential marketing that goes viral. Our campaigns generate buzz through crowd participation, PR and content sharing. Contact us on 0207 5030442 or email us on info@hotcow.co.uk.