As we get back into the swing of things for another new year at GPJ, our strategists look back at the some of the most interesting stories we shared throughout the year in our monthly Experience Intelligence reports, which explore the latest insights and trends at the heart of today’s experiential world.

So, what were the top trends that defined 2022?

person with VR

The lines between physical and digital continue to blur. People are trying to establish a physical-digital equilibrium after years of tech-first engagement. Moving forward, brands may need to solve for more personalisation across digital and physical formats as a way to let attendees dial in their preferred ‘mix’. Beyond being able to more effectively reach audiences, the ability to supplement experiences with increased sensory stimuli via both physical and digital presents a whole new way of promoting deeper connections to concepts, content and people through experience. Source: August ‘22 Report.

‘Living in the moment’ takes on new meaning. There is a growing trend of people stretching out, slowing down, and appreciating the little things in a post-pandemic world. In a world increasingly driven by always-on, continuous engagement that evolves over time, focusing on the moments that come together to make a holistic experience is a compelling strategy for brands and marketers alike. Source: November ‘22 Report.

Brands are rethinking the role of the office. New work dynamics are causing brands to approach the office as an experience. Across industries, spaces are evolving to be more purposeful—and the office is no different. People are ready for an evolved relationship with work, and brands should reconsider their offices as true ‘brand experiences’, focussed on the benefits of being together in-person, to meet new realities and expectations. Source: July ‘22 Report.

The greatest out-there experiences of 2022

The World Turns Upside Down

In celebration of the return of Stranger Things, the Upside Down took over 15 global landmarks through visual spectacles of “unprecedented size  and scale.” Source: June ‘22 Report.

Netflix’s Airdropping Billboard

To promote Netflix’s adaptation of Stephen King’s “Mr. Harrington’s Phone,” people passing by a cryptic billboard suddenly received AirDrop requests from beyond the grave. Source: November ‘22 Report.

Mastercard’s Album Drop – Priceless

The latest in sonic branding news, Mastercard’s first album is now available on Spotify. Featured artists span cultures, languages, and genres and turned the brand’s subtle melody into full-length songs. Source: July ‘22 Report.

Dating Site Creates A Gallery Of Dick Pics

Dating site Plenty Of Fish has turned the crude phenomenon of the dick pic into a clever new campaign by creating a gallery of actual men named Dick. It implores people to channel their ‘Big Richard Energy’ with the very positive tagline “don’t be a dick when dating”.Source: November ‘22 Report.

What trends do we have our eye on for 2023?

Generative AI

Experiences are manifestations of brand values. As brand expectations grow around topical POVs and actionable CSR policies, marketers must consider how to deeply integrate and amplify their initiatives, values and beliefs into meaningful experiences.

Generative AI will be a game changer for experience design.  Generative AI will bring a new wave of creativity and content creation to experience design. From smarter content generation, greater personalisation to condensed marketing timelines and increased ROI, generative AI will reshape the future. There needs to be more clarity around security, governance, and risks, but there’s no denying that it’s here to stay.

Pressure to plan and execute green events is increasing for experience marketers. With intensifying expectations for industries to embrace real sustainability intensify, events and experiences will need to rethink and reframe their approaches to achieve true carbon neutrality. Globally at GPJ we leverage resources like ISLA, the EIC Sustainable Event Standards and ISO, and can help guide your event teams towards more sustainable practices.

We are excited about what the future holds and believe these three trends will reshape experiences in the months ahead.  We’ll continue to keep our finger on the pulse and share the insights we uncover in our monthly Experience Intelligence reports – make sure you don’t miss out! Sign up here.