Marketers begin to commit to event marketing and adopt the term “experiential marketing.” Organizations across the industry develop dedicated event budgets and start to get serious about the discipline. Advertising cuts continue to fuel the event industry’s growth.
Sponsorship portfolios begin to get strategic, and Visa leverages sponsorships at a time when debt is high and credit cards aren’t doing well. The brand leans on communication, assessment and evaluation for sponsorship success while looking toward the Athens Olympics. (Visa continues to be a powerhouse Olympic sponsor today.)
Builders improve their mobile marketing trucks with better graphics, hydraulic locks, air conditioning, satellite and internet access. In fact, at this time, Wells Fargo takes a mobile classroom on the road with desktop computers and internet access for an educational tour aimed at bank employees. Meanwhile, Anheuser-Busch’s Bud World changes mobile marketing forever with a footprint that includes three interactive exhibits, a theater and the Bud Brew House, where on-site brew masters teach the art of brewing with multisensory engagements.
Sheraton introduces the Sweet Sleeper bed by taking over Central Park for the World’s Largest Pillow Fight starring 600 employees and guests. The event boasts entertainment, music, games, raffles, dozens of beds and a 40-foot by 80-foot giant bed used for the fight.
Brands infiltrate schools to reach moms, including Peeps, which embarks on a 96-market mobile tour that takes the sweet treat right into school classrooms. The program, developed to broaden the awareness of the spongy confection as more than an Easter-time treat, invades art classes with activity workbooks that show students how to use Peeps in arts and crafts.