For so long, marketers have relied heavily on data alone for the answers—but new research from sponsorship and experiential firm GMR Marketing goes beyond the what, and unearths the why driving consumers’ actions at events.

GMR’s groundbreaking new research study examines how to create brand trust through uniquely human moments at live experiences.

The study reveals why consumers are drawn to live experiences, and explores how brands can use this understanding of human emotion to augment data-driven marketing.

GMR visited live events across North America, from the runway to the rodeo, collecting data through interviews, on-site surveys and online panels from more than 2,000 experience seekers.

Emotional need states: Deep human needs drive experience seekers

What’s your Experiential EQ? Emotion’s true impact in communications

“The conversations took place in environments that ignited powerful emotions for the interviewees, giving us the necessary insights to discover the why,” said Elke Zysk, executive vice president of strategy + insights at GMR Marketing, in a news release. “Human moments create the meaning we crave, and those moments become the anchor for trust, connection and memory making.”

For brands, the report exposes the needs that consumers seek to satisfy through memorable, live experiences. Brands can intensify the significance of live experiences by crafting distinctive memories to satisfy these needs.

What’s your Experiential EQ? Emotion’s true impact in communications

“As humans, we are constantly making memories, and some of the most memorable times are the outcomes of intentional experiences,” said Zysk. “This is where brands can add the most value and connect with their consumers on a human level, by engaging them in an emotional state meaningful to their surroundings.”

People are skeptical of institutions, corporations, the media, and of course marketing—only 19 percent of consumers interviewed for this research believe what marketers tell them about products. The growth of experiential, however, has the potential to forever change and enhance the way brands reach consumers.

GMR’s experiential need states framework gives brands an entry point for satisfying these emotional needs—building engagements that drive relevance, spark emotional connection and ultimately stimulate the personal memory making that will influence attendees long after the event is over.

Download the full report here.

What’s your Experiential EQ? Emotion’s true impact in communications

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