How To Make Your Next Brand Activation Lounge A Hit


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How Can I Get Celebrities To See My Product? 

We've mentioned time and time again that getting celebrities to interact with your brand is a surefire way to make sales. Dedicated fans will truly do anything for their favorite celebrity, and purchasing a product that they're aligned with is an easy way to support them. While this feels like an easy way to make sales, it can be difficult to actually get your product in front of potential customers. 

An easy way to get your product in front of large amounts of celebrities is through event gift lounges  These lounges can be directly tied to one celebrity-filled event, or they can be surrounding a star-studded weekend. Either way, your brand will be seen by celebrities and journalists, alike. In this blog, Hollywood Branded shares an exciting branded content opportunity for your brand, as well as ways for your brand to get involved in celebrity lounges! 


TV Guide Comic-Con Lounge: A Perfect Fit For Your Brand! 

I'd really LOVE your help in getting the word out on a super cool event our team is building. They have all worked really hard, and put in a tremendous amount of effort into building an event that we know is going to be super cool.  We're looking for brand partners (of all sizes!) to come to help us make it magnificent!

This star-studded event is perfect for brands who could use help getting some extra press attention and social media love timed to the summer or back-to-school promo window. Best yet, it is a completely hands-free marketing opportunity that won’t interrupt summer vacation.  We’ll be helping brands leverage the power of the hundreds of celebrities attending and providing celebrity/influencer social posts, photos of celebs with the brand, and mega press coverage!
It’s really cool in fact – and has top-tier TV and movie celebs attending.  It’s different than other “gift lounges” that don’t get such great talent, and we’ve set this up to entertain these actors and actresses while they wait for media interviews.  They love the distraction (ok, and free brand product). Plus we have two media outlets who will be doing fully branded interviews – with a brand’s logo incorporated fully in their backdrop for the video and photo shoots, tagged in socials, and a complete print/digital takeover! F
or the celebrity gifting portion - brands can decide the total amount of product they want to gift - they do not have to gift everyone! We've thought of ways to make this a beneficial partnership for all brands - and the celebrity attendees, and we are super excited!
The event is priced for budgets of all sizes to be able to get awesome benefits (seriously - brands can participate for as low as $2,500). Come join - help us make this a major success story.

Interested? Check it out here

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How Do I Start An Event Activation Lounge?!?

So you are ready to do an event activation lounge... with our event (c'mon now - of course, you want in on this cool celeb event, right!), or someone else's. The first step is to decide what you want out of the event partnership.  

  • Do you want mega press and to make sure media covers you? Then you want to be one of the higher-tiered sponsors with branding throughout the venue.
  • Do you want pictures or testimonials about your product? Then working with a celebrity event where you can have an activation set up is a MUCH better idea.
  • Do you just need the REAL ability to say "we gifted celebrity xyz with our product" to be able to brag about it in press releases or to media outlets? If this is the case, just being in a gift bag and not on a shelf display for photos may be the best fit for you.

Below are some steps to keep in mind before starting an event activation lounge. 

1. Only Participate In Opportunities Where There Are Takeaways

Unless pure sampling to celebrities is the only end desire, never never never provide a product without a guarantee of some sort of takeaway – including photos, social media posts, or testimonials from attending talent.

DJ Khaled celebrity gifting

Photo Credit: Bloomberg 

2. The Screening Process

Brand managers should expect to provide two to five items of whatever product is being considered so the event producer can determine the best ways to showcase it on site, well in advance.

Stack of soap multiple products at event

3. Submit Your Brand

If you submit your brand to an event and it is declined, work on the core story of why the product is so unique or fantastic or beneficial, that will make it stand out for selection by another event opportunity. 

Brand story

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4. Decide What The Product Will Be

Providing company product – the actual product – in a bag is one option, with the other option being a gift certificate. This will depend on what type of product is being promoted, and even with gift certificates, a small sample of the product is advisable. As an example, a vacation resort could provide a candle, face mask, and CD of ocean waves set to native island music to tease the idea of a relaxing getaway.

Gifting Lounge Brand Activation

Photo Credit: ExtraTV 

5. Make Sure Your Product Fits The Caliber Of Attendees

A-List talent is usually a little more selective about what they take, while B, C, and always those D-listers are more open-handed and likely to embrace anything gifted. Some events allow a variance in the level of product gifted, to better match the talent range. Using a vacation partner again as an example, A-List talent may receive not only the vacation voucher, but also airline tickets to accompany, or special services at the resort.

Don’t knock those non-A-Listers however – their names often have a stronger affinity to a brand’s core demographic, who they seem more attainable than in the aspirational world of high celebrity. This is why it is so important to know what the desired goal is of the gift bag involvement, in order to manage internal expectations. For gift certificates, the brand manager also needs to predetermine if they are redeemable by anyone other than the intended gift receiver and put a strategy in place to ensure a seamless booking experience both for the brand and the celebrity.

Diverse caliber of attendees

6. Plan In Advance

Ideally, brand managers should start planning event sponsorships and gift bag opportunities at least a couple of months prior to the event so that the best opportunities for the brand can be researched, and samples of the brand sent. For brand managers who are true procrastinators, there are opportunities up to a week or two before the event that will still allow the brand time in the spotlight, but the risk is that a competitor will have exclusivity, and the ‘best’ opportunities will already be taken.

Gift Bag

7. Secure Press

Today, many event producers request extra products for the press. This should be more important to the brand manager than what the celebrities will take home – as the digital, print, and broadcast of the event is the big win. The media will base their stories on the celebrity’s favorite items - often highly influenced by their own personal favorites - which typically are the same items that are the big media winners at the end of the day. Take advantage of these golden media spotlight opportunities as they only cost in product dollars versus hard cash. 

Secure media to cover the event

8. Write A Press Release And Distribute It

Don’t make the mistake of thinking the event will provide all the press your brand can receive. Write a short press release after the event, listing celebrities who received the product. Provide access in the press release to photos secured on-site with the celebrities. Then distribute the press release in order to get potential additional press, and to also increase the brand’s overall SEO and keyword search in combination with the word celebrity as well as specific celebrities.

Press Release

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