Brand Activation Essentials: Building a Solid Foundation

Brand activation is an essential aspect of building and promoting a brand. It involves creating a campaign, event, or experience that enables a brand to engage directly with consumers and build a loyal brand community around its products or services. Brand activation is not a one-time event but a long-term strategy. It requires ongoing effort and adaptation to changing market trends and consumer preferences. With a solid foundation and a commitment to continuous improvement, brands can successfully activate their brand and build lasting relationships with their customers.  

Here are some essentials for building a solid foundation in brand activations: 

Brand’s Mission: 

This is the brand’s reason for existence, the driving force behind its actions. It’s the “why” that fuels every decision, every campaign, and every interaction with the target audience. It’s the core belief that propels the brand forward and sets the tone for its presence in the crowded market. The mission is not just a statement; it’s a commitment to creating a meaningful connection with the customers and making a difference in their lives. 

Brand’s Vision 

The brand’s vision is its North Star, guiding its journey through the dynamic business landscape. It’s the long-term goal that shapes the brand’s strategies and helps it navigate the challenges of the industry. The vision is not just about where the brand sees itself in the future, but also about the impact it wants to have on its customers and the world. It’s about creating memorable experiences and lasting impressions that resonate with the audience’s minds. 

Brand’s Values: 

The brand’s values are its moral compass, guiding its behaviour and decision-making process. These principles reflect what the brand stands for and what it believes in. They are the pillars that support the brand’s identity and influence how it interacts with its customers. Whether it’s integrity, innovation, or customer-centricity, these values play a crucial role in shaping the brand’s reputation and fostering loyalty among the customers. 

Unique Selling Proposition (USP): 

Unique Selling Proposition (USP): The USP is what sets the brand apart from its competitors. It’s the unique benefit or advantage that the brand offers to its customers. It’s the “what” that makes the brand special. Whether it’s a groundbreaking product feature, exceptional customer service, or an innovative business strategy, the USP is a powerful tool that helps the brand stand out in the competitive market and attract more customers. 

Target Audience: 

The target audience is the group of people that the brand aims to reach with its products or services. Understanding the target audience involves knowing their needs, wants, preferences, and values. It’s about knowing “who” the brand is talking to. This knowledge helps the brand tailor its marketing campaigns and product offerings to meet the audience’s needs and create a deep emotional connection with them. 

What the Audience Values: 

This is about understanding what’s important to the target audience. It’s about knowing what they value and appreciate. This knowledge helps the brand align its offerings with the audience’s values. Whether it’s quality, affordability, sustainability, or convenience, aligning the brand’s offerings with what the audience values can help build brand awareness and increase online sales. 

Building a Strong Brand Identity 

A strong brand identity is the backbone of successful brand activation. This includes a distinctive logo, a consistent colour scheme, and a unique brand voice. These elements should be consistently used across all marketing channels to create a cohesive brand image. Listed below are ways to formulate a strong brand identity: 

Distinctive Logo: 

The logo is the face of the brand. It’s often the first thing people notice about a brand. A distinctive logo helps the brand stand out in a crowded marketplace. It should be simple yet memorable, and it should reflect the brand’s personality and values. The logo is a crucial part of the brand’s identity and plays a significant role in brand activation campaigns. It’s not just a symbol; it’s a powerful tool that can evoke emotions, build brand awareness, and create a lasting impression in the audience’s minds.

Consistent Colour Scheme: 

Colours evoke emotions and associations. A consistent colour scheme helps to reinforce the brand’s identity and create a certain mood or feeling. For example, red can evoke feelings of passion and excitement, while blue can evoke feelings of trust and reliability. In the world of marketing, colours are used strategically in branding to influence customer perceptions and decision making. They are an important component of the brand experience and can significantly impact the success of brand activation campaigns. 

Unique Brand Voice: 

This is the personality and emotion infused into a brand’s communication strategy. It’s reflected in everything from the wording and tone of your messages to the content of your visual imagery. A unique brand voice makes a brand more relatable and memorable to its target audience. It’s a key element in shaping brand perception and fostering an emotional connection with the audience. In the context of brand activation, having a consistent and unique brand voice can help in creating more engaging and impactful marketing campaigns. 

Brand Personality: 

This is the set of human characteristics associated with a brand. It could be fun, serious, professional, adventurous, etc. The brand personality should resonate with the target audience and be reflected in all aspects of the brand, from the logo to the brand voice. It’s what makes a brand unique and differentiates it from other brands in a competitive market. A well-defined brand personality can attract more customers, generate interest, and contribute to successful brand activations. 

Brand Story: 

This is the narrative that connects the brand with its audience. It could be the history of the brand, the inspiration behind it, or the vision it strives for. A compelling brand story can evoke emotions and build a deeper connection with the audience. It’s a powerful tool for brand activation as it provides context, adds meaning to the brand, and enhances the overall customer experience. A well-told brand story can increase brand loyalty and create a memorable brand experience. 

Brand Promise: 

This is the value or experience that the brand commits to deliver to its customers. It sets the expectations for the customer and is a key factor in building trust and loyalty. The brand promise is essentially the brand’s commitment to its customers. It’s what customers can expect from every interaction with the brand. In brand activation, delivering on the brand promise is crucial. It not only helps in building a strong brand but also plays a significant role in driving online sales and business growth. 

Creating a Unique Brand Activation Campaign

Brand activation is all about creating a unique brand experience. This involves creating an experience that is unique to the brand and resonates with the brand’s target audience. This could involve hosting events, creating interactive campaigns, or leveraging technology to create immersive experiences. Let’s dive in and see industry practices in making original brand experiences: 

Hosting Events: 

Events provide a platform for brands to interact directly with their target audience. They can range from product launches, pop-up shops, to webinars and workshops. The key is to create an event that not only showcases the brand and its offerings but also provides a memorable experience for the attendees. 

Creating Interactive Campaigns: 

Interactive campaigns engage the audience in an active and participatory manner. This could be through social media contests, interactive ads, or user-generated content campaigns. The goal is to create a two-way dialogue between the brand and its audience, fostering a sense of community and engagement. 

Leveraging Technology: 

Technology can be used to create immersive experiences that captivate the audience. This could involve the use of virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), or interactive digital installations. These technologies can transport the audience into a different world, providing a unique and unforgettable brand experience. 


This involves tailoring the brand experience to meet the individual needs and preferences of each customer. This could be through personalized product recommendations, targeted marketing messages, or customized user interfaces. Personalisation makes the customer feel valued and understood, enhancing their overall brand experience. 

Exceptional Customer Service: 

Providing excellent customer service can greatly enhance the brand experience. This involves responding promptly to customer inquiries, resolving issues efficiently, and going the extra mile to exceed customer expectations. Exceptional customer service can turn a satisfied customer into a loyal brand advocate. 


Regardless of the platform or channel, the brand experience should be consistent. This means maintaining a consistent brand identity, message, and level of service across all touchpoints. Consistency reinforces the brand image in the minds of the customers, making the brand more recognizable and trustworthy. 

Engaging the Target Audience

Engagement is key in brand activation. This involves engaging the target audience in meaningful ways. This could involve creating interactive experiences, engaging on social media, or creating content that resonates with the target audience. Below are applicable practices: 

Creating Resonating Content: 

Content that resonates with the audience is more likely to engage them. This involves understanding the audience’s needs, interests, and values, and creating content that addresses these. This could be through blog posts, videos, podcasts, or infographics. 

Leveraging Social Media: 

Social media platforms offer a wealth of opportunities for brand activation. Brands can engage with their audience through regular posts, live videos, contests, and more. The key is to create content that is engaging, shareable, and true to the brand’s identity. 

Regular Posts: 

Regular posting on social media keeps your brand at the top of your audience’s mind. These posts can range from product updates, behind-the-scenes looks, to educational content. The key is to provide value to your audience and keep them engaged with your brand. 

Live Videos: 

Live videos offer real-time interaction with your audience. This could be in the form of Q&A sessions, product launches, or behind-the-scenes tours. Live videos can create a sense of community and foster a deeper connection with your audience. 


Contests can drive engagement and increase your brand’s reach. This could be in the form of photo contests, quizzes, or giveaways. 

Using Experiential Marketing

Social Media Activations 

A great example of a successful social media activation is Starbucks’ Sparkle Shop campaign. To introduce a new series of carbonated drinks, Starbucks Canada opened a sparkle pop-up store. Many Toronto-based bloggers and influencers welcomed this new experience, took part in this pop-up store, and made these Starbucks beverages hot on social media. 

In-Person Events 

Lean Cuisine, traditionally thought of as a diet brand, ran a pop-up event in New York City where they invited women to look not at their body weight, but instead at their biggest achievements and positive attributes like being a single mom to four children, or going back to school at age 551. This type of messaging helped Lean Cuisine form a new, more positive brand identity in the minds of consumers that moved away from pre-existing stigmas or brand perceptions. 

Influencer Marketing 

Dunkin’ Donuts launched “The Charli” drink in partnership with TikTok star, Charlie D’Amelio. This campaign leveraged the influencer’s massive following to promote the new drink, resulting in a significant increase in brand awareness. 

Creative Activations 

Snapchat promoted the launch of their “Spectacles” smart eyewear by setting up a big, yellow vending machine outside of their head office at Venice Beach in California. This unique approach helped build a lot of hype due to the limited access and exclusivity of the vending machine being the only place to get them at first launch. 

Trade Shows 

An example of an experiential marketing activity in a trade show is by Australian company, Car Expert. They commissioned stand builder Expo Centric to customise a stand for the AADA convention that would generate traffic in the stand to boost Car Expert’s brand position in the market. The idea used to draw in people was the installation of a fun virtual reality (VR) game, which was set up for the trade show participants’ entertainment. Given that the client is in the business of automobiles, it made sense to install a type of simulation game that revolves around cars and racing. Time scores of stand visitors were flashed on an HD screen to spark further interest utilising friendly competition and bragging rights. With the help of a fun game, Car Expert was able to connect with potential and existing customers. 

Are these Essentials of Brand Activation Important?

Yes, it is crucial for building a solid foundation. It’s about targeting the right audience, implementing effective brand activation strategies, and creating memorable brand activations. This process increases brand awareness, boosts online sales, and fosters brand loyalty. 

Whether it’s through in-store activations, free trial campaigns, or event planning, every strategy plays a role in the competitive market. The marketing campaigns should be engaging, offering free samples or hosting exclusive events. 

Brand activation is not just a buzzword in the marketing world, it’s a key to business growth. So, let’s continue to innovate and use brand activation as our guide in this dynamic business environment. 

We are a full-service live experience agency, specialising in exhibitions, events, retail, activations, experiences, and marketing. Get in touch with us and boost your business with our solutions today! 

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