In the 21st century, digital marketing has become a primary means of advertising for many, if not every, business. Businesses rely on their online marketing tactics to take their business to the height of success. But, can businesses really afford to dismiss the traditional offline tactics, given the limitations of digital to stimulate all five human senses? Many people forget that businesses have long succeeded before the internet took over our every-day lives. One company have assessed the marketing tactics currently favoured by UK businesses, and evaluated them on how effective they are at marketing to all five senses.

Marler Haley have created a ‘Sensory Marketing Cheatsheet’ which shows the effectiveness of more than forty marketing tactics in terms of targeting the five senses. These include both offline and online tactics such as videos, exhibitions, social media content and more.

Through their research, Marler Haley found that the only way to appeal to all senses is using in-person marketing such as conferences, exhibitions and in-person experiential events. They also found that mobile apps, branded content tools and games provide the next highest level of sensory activation. Take a look for yourself at

You may now be asking yourself the question: what actually is sensory branding? And how can I apply this to my own marketing tactics? Don’t worry it’s not as complicated as it sounds. When you exhibit, aim to emotionally connect with your visitors by appealing to all of their senses. By forging an emotional association between your brand and your customer’s minds, you are creating a subconscious bond. The more senses you appeal to, the stronger the bond. This bond will influence their purchasing behaviour and result in better ROI on your marketing budget. This is confirmed by the Event Marketing Institute, who have reported that 74% of the public say that engaging with branded event marketing experiences makes them more likely to buy the product being promoted.

Make sure at your next exhibition you’re not only appealing to your visitors’ vision, but to as many of their senses as you can.