As one of India’s leading consumer promotions and loyalty experts, BigCity has delivered over 6000 campaigns for over 400+ clients. As such we can not only spot trends in promotional marketing but create them too.
Here are the trends we have been seeing in recent years:
1. From At-home to Experiential Rewards
Digital rewards for obvious reasons were extremely popular with consumers during the pandemic. However, post-pandemic, consumers are looking forward to indulging in experiences. With a spike in outdoor sessions, brands are trying to create offers and promotions around relevant passion points to build brand affinity. A report by BCG  found that 37% of Indian consumers value experiences over products.
Experiences elevate emotions and build a connection between the brand and its consumers. When we enjoy experiences, we are also more likely to share them on social media too. Experiences are not just rewards; they are memories that will be shared and treasured. Through our campaigns, we have found that rewards such as salon experiences, movies, dining, and sports have created a far deeper bond between consumer and brand.
2. Digital Transformation
Today’s consumers expect instant gratification and this extends to rewards. Consumer journeys need to be smooth and simple, but most importantly deliver a lifestyle reward instantly in code/ voucher format ready for the consumer to use instantly.
Research shows that 35% of business executives claim that digital transformation  helps them to better meet customer expectations and improve operational efficiency and 38% of executives plan to invest more in technology to make it their competitive advantage.
At BigCity, we place technology at the core of everything we do, allowing us to develop promotional solutions quickly and efficiently. One such example was when we conceptualized an offer of gratitude for brave warriors of Covid-19 (across hospitals, streets, police stations, etc.) in the form of a digital ‘Thank You’ on behalf of a leading confectionery brand. Consumers could choose a nominee, personalize the product, and share it as a GIF through WhatsApp.
3. Gamification & Conversational AI
Another effective technique being used by brands to capture the audience’s attention is gamification. Playing a game to earn a reward is more engaging than simply getting a reward as it provides a sense of skill and control. Gamification as an engagement technique is expected to grow from a $6.8 billion industry in 2018 to a $40 billion one by 2024 .
A growing number of consumers engage with brands that use gamification or conversational AI like chatbots to enable mechanisms like point scoring, leveling up, and being part of global leaderboard.
Recently, we have seen a surge in the number of brands who have approached us to create a gamified experience as part of their promotional campaign. It allowed them to capture first-party data and even develop direct-to-consumer promotions.
4. Long-term Strategy, Short-term Tactics
More and more brands are looking to the long-term with regard to engagement and have realised that greater engagement arises from constantly running on-pack activity that is relevant to their audience. It is a way to encourage trial and move the consumer into the habit formation stage. Once the habit has been established, long-term engagement and loyalty generally follow.
5. Customers understand the Power of Data
Customers understand the power of data and why companies are so keen to harvest their data. In some instances, consumers even want monetary gains for providing their information. In our experience, we only ask and use the basic data you need to engage promotionally with your consumers. Do not alienate your audience by asking for too much or sensitive data.
Most importantly, share value with consumers for sharing their data in the form of added value offers or better customer service. Because, when consumers see that their data is being used for their benefit , in ways that they value, they are likely to connect more with the brand.
6. Relevant Targeted Content
The secret to gaining and keeping consumers can be summarized in just three words: relevant targeted content. Creating content that is relevant to a consumer’s needs and is specific to the target group, generates greater engagement. This relevance extends to promotional themes and rewards too.
Curating relevant rewards targeted toward the right sentiment is also important. Considering the festive season, brands that gratify consumers with pertinent rewards through their promotions help them achieve higher profits. For instance, by rewarding consumers with gold at the festival of Onam, BigCity helped an FMCG brand create a successful promotion.
7. The Metaverse
A new marketing ecosystem has evolved where brands can connect with their customer base in ways that have never been possible before. Built on augmented or virtual reality, cryptocurrency, and digital goods including NFTs, the Metaverse offers an additional sales channel for brands, or more importantly, a completely new revenue stream.
The key is to naturally introduce the brand into the Metaverse in the same natural way that consumers are used to engaging with the brand in the real world. Having built cutting-edge gamification mechanisms, AI-enabled platforms as well as truly immersive AR/VR experiences, BigCity can guide brands to leap from the real world into the Metaverse.
Investing in the Right Consumer Trends will pay off.
Consumers’ expectations of brands are constantly evolving, and brands need to meet those expectations to maintain and improve brand loyalty both tactically and long term.
Our key skill is in adapting consumer trends to specific brands so that every aspect from a creative proposition, planning, technology, and rewards work together seamlessly to deliver an exception and rewarding experience.
BigCity understands this and based on insights from working with 400+ blue-chip brands, we have successfully executed over 6000+ campaigns in consumer promotions, loyalty programs, and rewards management whilst being empowered by relevant cutting-edge technology.
To discuss how we can assist you in creating your next promotional campaign, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.