Last Word: Our marketing methods enhance people's lives

Live Brand Experience Association chairman Matthew Bending hopes promotion and research will enable the sector to maintain its upward curve.

A lot has happened in a year. The inaugural pre-launch meeting of the LBEA took place in April 2004 and the official launch followed in November. Since this time, the LBEA has developed a strategy which includes a vision, a mission and a plan to meet the association's aims and objectives.

The LBEA's ambition is to promote live brand experience as a powerful marketing medium that can be deployed strategically and integrate with all other forms of marketing activity. And a year on, pooling knowledge and expertise appears to be paying dividends. It has become more common for live brand experience to be the lead below-the-line discipline, acting as the platform for associated SP, DM and PR activities. And 2005 is seeing brands keen to look at ways to align their sales and marketing activities more closely. When brands use live brand experience in creative ways close to the point of purchase, results are both immediate and impressive.

All members of the LBEA steering committee believe that brands are turning to live brand experience for a simple reason - it's what consumers want.

Where most forms of marketing interrupt consumers' lives, experiences enhance them.

The association's aims are:

- To position live brand experience as a mainstream medium that integrates with all other forms of marketing

- To significantly grow business levels for all stakeholders

- To promote best practice among members by communication and knowledge share.

Members agree that research will play a significant role. For several years, steering members of the LBEA have been working with clients to evaluate their brand experience activity. Steering members are now actively looking to develop LBEA evaluation techniques that will provide established methods of measurement.

Live brand experience is at the start of a huge upward trend. And with other media platforms becoming increasingly fragmented, live brand experience is achieving the standout brands are looking for.

Membership already spans over 30 of the UK's leading experiential marketing practitioners. So if you're a stakeholder in this growing market show your support and join us in taking our industry forward.

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