Inspiration blog Inspiration blog

The Experience Brands Weekly #189

The power of life event stages for brands

Habits take long to form and are hard to break. Research has shown that on average, it takes anywhere between 18 – 254 days for a new habit to be formed and over 2 months for a new habit to become instinctive. Once this habit is formed changing it is very problematic.

Yet brands thrive on recruiting new customers which requires convincing them to change their habit; instigating them to buy brand A instead of B or to change from buying at only X time to also buying at Y time.

Life events are occasions that have been statistically proven to grant brands the ability to have their communication penetrate through the autopilot mode we function in 40% of the time. A life event is a definitive period in a person’s life when they go through important changes like changing jobs, getting married, moving houses, having a baby etc. In the book, The Choice Factory, Richard Shotton explains that it’s in these moment that people are more susceptible to brand comms because of the change in circumstances and context.

Understanding life events will help brands better react to consumer behaviours and unlock opportunities by offering relevant solutions. For example, if a wine brand knows that the reason a loyal customer has reduced their purchasing frequency is because they are about to change homes, it won’t waste resources by bombarding the consumer with re-targeting ads running the risk of irritating a valuable costumer. Regardless of how good an ad is, a person in-between a move is very unlikely to stock their wine cabinet.

Once a brand understands this, the next step is to:

  • Identify the life event relevant for its category. A make up brand might want to target people changing jobs or recently single for a confidence boost.
  • Implement tools to recognise when your audience are going through a life event. Facebook and Google now offer Life Event targeting.
  • Determine the best time interval to target; before or after the life event? How soon after? In the above example of a wine brand, after the move could be a great time to send a congratulatory bottle of wine or upsell to a more expensive brand if the consumer has moved into a more affluent neighbourhood.

For ads to be effective, brands must reconsider targeting mere demographics or keywords to identifying key stages in audience lives. In your next campaign, you might want to consider if it is best to target ‘millennials’ or ‘people about to get their first job’.


Other Bites:

Nesquik: 70 years anniversary

The Nestle owned, Nesquik, is celebrating 70 years of selling its chocolate powder brand to customers with a two-storey slide, and a collection of 3 years’ worth of its ads. People will also be able to buy two drinks created by Canadian chef and restaurateur Jordan Andino at the Nesquik Milk Stop in Santa Monica, California. The activation will run until 27 July.


Seedlip: The world first no & lo alcohol cocktail bar

The non-alcoholic brand is launching a pop-up cocktail bar experience called Nolo at Dandelyan bar in Southbank and Panda & Sons in Edinburgh on the 24th and 25th of July. Nolo aims to focus on the mix of ingredients and flavours in the drinks instead of drawing attention to its lack of alcohol.

At the same time as the UK activations, bars around the world in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Sydney and Stockholm will also be serving no and low alcoholic cocktail drinks.


Brancott Estate Wines: World first train station micro-vineyard.

Brancott Estate Wines has created what it terms the ‘world's first’ train station vineyard. The sampling activation has 50 separate vines, each over 7ft tall, at London train stations where commuters can wander in to sample 100ml glass of wine. The activation will be at Waterloo, London Bridge, and London Paddington stations on the 19th, 21st and 24th of August respectively.