Often unparalleled in their potential to target and motivate prospects through engaging the senses, live events present exciting opportunities to increase a brand’s visibility and strengthen relationships with existing customers.
Well-executed live events create a tactile experience – one which drives an emotional connection in a way purely digital content like video streaming or online networking cannot accomplish. However, as consumers become more dependent on technology, events themselves are morphing to match their expectations by combining the benefits of digital media with face-to-face environments. With the right concept and design, digital content can be effectively integrated into the event space to enhance the visitor experience by promoting interactivity and creating high-level engagement.
One of the largest automotive brand showcases in Asia planned, designed and staged by Kingsmen, BMW World 2014 – Stories in Motion, was a prime example of this new breed of events that successfully employed a variety of digital elements to tell the unique stories about its brand.
Novel Multimedia Technology
First stop – visitors are greeted by futuristic see-through LCD screens fused into glass display cases. These screens form a smart window where visitors can learn about key features of different BMW cars through videos while admiring miniature car models in the background. These innovative multi-dimensional showcases certainly make great conversation-starters for BMW enthusiasts.
In line with BMW’s commitment to innovation, curved panoramic projection screens seamlessly integrated into the walls made the BMW World Grand Launch, BMW i Grand Launch and Future of Mobility International Conference even more impactful and memorable. To optimize the visual experience, exclusive “Stories in Motion” videos were also produced and projected onto these panoramic screens, which appear to envelop the audience.
Augmented Reality & Mobile Engagement
More than just a fad, mobile apps are progressing towards becoming an essential tool in the events industry. A feature-packed app – the BMW World All-Access Pass – was specially developed to create an immersive experience at the event. Available for download on both Apple and Android devices, the app’s built-in augmented reality function was one of the highlights. A hybrid derived from the combination of visual, 3D environments with virtual information, augmented reality enabled visitors to experience a simulation of BMW’s automated parking system, take a 360 degree virtual tour inside BMW cars and pack the boot of a BMW active tourer for an exciting road trip. Opportunities to win prizes at the event by scanning the BMW logo further incentivized users to keep revisiting the application for event and vehicle highlights.
For the first time at BMW World 2014, the event included a section dedicated to the MINI brand, whereby an interactive display reflected the fun side of the brand by allowing visitors to virtually spray-paint a MINI car using a digital paint-gun controller.
BMW World 2014 also served as the launch pad for the BMW i brand of electric cars in Singapore. Hence, BMW’s Future of Mobility zone took centre stage to showcase the all-electric BMW i3 and the plug-in hybrid BMW i8, as well as the innovative and intelligent BMW Vision ConnectedDrive Concept Car. To encourage visitors to gain a better understanding of the BMW i8 plug-in hybrid sports car, an interactive X-Ray application on a touch screen panel was created to allow guests to scan different parts of the automobile to learn more about the technology, which powers it and its special features.
Mementos that tell a story
Finally, to extend the BMW experience beyond the event, attendees were invited to create personalized mementos to take home with them. Two different interactive photo stations were created for the event. One as a physical photo booth and the other, a virtual one which captured Instagram posts with the event’s unique hashtag. The physical photo booth provided a brand-centric interface and a thematic shell lending great presence to the brand. On the other hand, the virtual photo booth harnessed the power of social media in promoting the event. Aside from fun photo opportunities, the photo booths’ data collection capability also enables continual engagement between BMW and its customers throughout and beyond the BMW World 2014 event.
Ultimately, the use of digital technology should heighten the event by providing the brand better insights into their audience, promote attendee-level collaboration and enable organizations to craft more targeted and value-added experiences that bring about better business results. At BMW World 2014, digital technology played a key role at the event by enhancing the overall brand experience for the audience.
The contributor is the Sales & Marketing Director of Kingsmen Exhibits Pte Ltd, a leading communication design & production group in Asia Pacific & the Middle East.