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Five Takeaways from IFA Berlin

Five Takeaways from IFA Berlin

The key topics from a must-attend event for big-name electronics brands

WRITTEN BY DAN HALL

This year’s Internationale Funkausstellung Berlin (IFA) event in Berlin proved it was once again a great place for top consumer electronics and home appliance brands to launch their latest products to the European market.

The annual event attracts 240,000 visitors over six days, including nearly 6,000 media representatives alongside trade and consumer delegates, who descend on the Messe Berlin to experience 10,000 of the latest innovations.

Below are just some of the features that caught my eye and hooked my interest during a two-day stint in the halls. Here are the top five takeaways you can apply to your own programme.

Breaking Down the Barriers: The organisers of IFA Berlin take a unique approach when it comes to who can and can’t attend the event. Rather than limit delegates to press or trade, members of the public are also able to visit — in fact, nearly half of the 240,000 people who attend are consumers.

This adds a whole new dimension to the event — most of the consumers seemed like avid tech fans, so the whole experience had a Comic-Con feel about it, and the footfall was impressively high.

Unique Opportunities for Content Creation: This tactic also seemed to benefit the brands, as rather than rely solely on the reporters to promote their new products through press conferences, news was also spread by consumers’ users-generated content — brands encouraged delegates to record what they saw on their devices and share it across social channels, and create firsthand content for blog articles or other channels to share with others. Word of mouth is also a powerful tool for brands — we all know that the opinion of a colleague or friend can influence an individual’s decision to purchase a product or service more so than other forms of communication.

Embracing the Event App: IFA Berlin is a tech-focused event, so it comes as no surprise that the organisers created an app especially for the occasion. The tool’s interactive 3D event map and exhibitor and product search functionalities were particularly useful when it came to navigating the enormous 1.6 million-square-foot venue, and the myIFA service was great for bookmarking relevant exhibitors and products.

Points for Creativity: It was clear that many of the bigger brands had invested a significant amount into their presence at the show — however it was some creative tactics by the likes of T-Mobile and LG that caught my eye in particular.

Interestingly, T-Mobile communicated its key messages in German, and opted for a unique pink installation on the roof of its hall. Instead of using its logo as a focal point, the brand’s pink and white colours were the focus. This created a more engaging environment, and caused attendees to stop and linger a little longer than they probably normally would.

LG created a tunnel made out of screens for the entry to its stand. It displayed high-resolution video content on the roof, which included blue whales swimming through the water and imagery of the cosmos, creating somewhat of an immersive environment.  

The Big Brand Experience: While there were some really creative stands at the event, in my eyes Panasonic seemed to truly embrace brand experience. What really stood out at its “A Better Life, A Better World” themed stand was the focus on the brand’s Lifestyle Showcase. It was designed to present the lifestyles we all desire through the display of its latest product ranges. The Personal Care zone was particularly interesting, and saw men receive complimentary grooming services; meanwhile, an SNS photo printing service was located in the ladies’ beauty section.

For an event that has been around since 1924, this year’s IFA highlighted just how important it is to anyone who plays within the consumer electronics, home appliance, and, of course, events space. From a delegate perspective, all of the biggest brands are there to explore. And for brands? They get to enjoy maximum exposure with both trade and consumer delegates traversing the venue’s many halls.

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