Hue Robertson

Really Real Experiences

2010 has already seen 3D technology take the world by storm; but why is there a sudden need to get up close and personal with absolutely everything? I guess the answer lies in the emerging trend of ‘really real’ experiences that consumers now crave, a trend which has been around for a few years and, to me,shows no signs of abating.

Consumer’s pursuit of everything and anything that gives them something different to talk about is a must. Status is no longer measured by symbols that you can show; it’s all about the personal experiences that you can talk about. Having ‘really real’ experiences is the most authentic and relevant way to appease this consumer craving, with entertainment technologies like 3D, augmented reality and the rest, in pole position to deliver them.

In their very nature, these technologies make what you see more life-like, they bring you closer to the action and they captivate an audience. They are harder to fabricate and therefore more trustworthy. They move the interaction from simple passive participation to an immersive experience, engrossing and involving the audience to a much greater degree.

Examples of this in action can already be seen with O2’s 3D screening of England’s six nations rugby matches at cinemas across the UK, providing a completely new rugby viewing experience. Sky has also got in on the act, recently conducting a trial of 3D football screenings in pubs across the country. Of course we can’t forget the traditional stomping ground of 3D, the cinema, with the hugely successful release of Avatar 3D taking all the headlines (and the box office takings).

Technology aside for a minute, this trend goes deeper than execution and into the very fabric of communication. Concepts and messages must maintain the raw sense of honesty and realty to truly resonate in the modern market place

So the point is simple. The rise of these technologies isn’t technology for technology’s sake, its meeting a consumer need, a need to close the gap between sender and receiver. And this is true of both media and message. If brands can help facilitate this pursuit for ‘real’ experiences they not only create positive brand association, they also create an immersive interaction with a consumer which has no interruption. Surely, a marketers dream (certainly and experiential marketers dream)?

One important caveat… content is still king. If it is poor quality, really real or not, the technology and the strategy will only bring to life your failings. So come on folks… time to GET REAL.

-Alistair Dickson, Planning Team-

  • Craig Wallace

    I think so. Anyone you put in front of your clients should be worth paying. How much? well thats another question…

  • Kim Payne

    I think you’ve got it pitched just about right. I have a particular disdain for the rise in adverts for ‘interns’ who receive just expenses and travel costs. As anyone who has worked in this industry knows this is a full-on business where each of us relies upon the commitment and dedication of our colleagues. If that young person is a part of the team then they deserve to be paid. Worst of all are the companies that ask for the unpaid intern to provide their own equipment in order to produce presentations, web design or videos which are then sold on to clients or used to promote the business. I would suggest that your approach is a wise investment in both your business and the futures of the bright young things who will populate the industry for the next 30-40 years. That, to me, is professional, responsible and, best of all, exciting for your clients and your in-house team.

  • Abi Cozens

    I have recently graduated from University and did a placement/ internship a couple of years ago. From a student’s point of view, having ‘intern’ in front of your name makes you feel separated from the rest of the company. In terms of pay, I was on the minimum wage (as it was then) and had to cover payments like living away, travel costs each day and so on. Throughout that year I was running my own events and leading a team including departmental managers and yet still on minimum wage that barely covered everything. I feel a student’s salary should be based on their role within the company and depending where you are based, ie London slightly higher as living costs are higher. Merlin group offers a fantastic opportunity for students and more companies need to pick up on this and as a positive; the Event’s industry is becoming more competitive and more universities are taking on more students each year. A placement year can be vital experience for them.

  • Amy Earley

    We have a sucessful programme of internships that lead on fully paid management positions, it is vital to have young blood & in our company. We are always looking at new recruits so if you are interested in a career in sales, marketing & events we currently have an intership available, if interested please contact me on