The Perfect Blend: Creating Lasting Connections Through Media, Merch, and Events 

 | Jeffrey Haynes

Picture this: an event that seamlessly weaves together the power of media, the allure of branded merchandise, and the magic of real-life gatherings. As I sat down with a client, sketching out the ideal scenario where media, merch, and events converge to create a captivating emotional connection, it struck me that this fusion is something worth sharing. In a world where budgets vary and resources are finite, this blueprint represents the pinnacle of success – a symphony of elements that come together for a memorable experience. 

Of course, there are so many variations and possibilities that are unique to each event, but you can generally boil it all down to three main phases: Pre-activation, activation, and post-activation.  


During pre-activation, you want to build awareness and anticipation with thoughtful communications and messaging. 

  • Email with Video Teasers: We kick things off with an email that piques interest, incorporating a captivating video teaser that sets the stage for the upcoming activation or event. 
  • Personalized Mailer with Curated Merch: A thoughtful touchpoint arrives next – a mailer complete with a personalized note and a carefully chosen piece of merchandise that’s directly tied to the event. It’s a thank you for registering or an extra nudge for those yet to respond. 
  • Detailed Email Briefing: A comprehensive email follows, providing participants with all the vital information they need. From schedules to dress codes, it’s all part of the “Accepted Process” that ensures everyone is on the same page. 
  • Last-Minute Updates and Reminders: The day before the event, another touchpoint drops into inboxes, delivering any final updates and gently reminding attendees of the key details. 



When it comes time to activate, it’s your job to captivate your audience.  

  • Engaging Room Drop: As the event unfolds, participants receive a delightful room drop featuring survival essentials, exclusive merchandise, printed schedules, and event essentials. 
  • Immersive Videos and Signage: Videos and captivating signage are strategically placed throughout the event space, infusing the atmosphere with energy and a sense of community. 
  • Opening Event Video: An event opener video sets the mood, immersing attendees in the experience from the very start. 
  • Merchandise Area: A retail-inspired merchandise shopping experience beckons attendees, offering them the chance to select a gift that will be sent to them post-event. 
  • Closing Ceremony: The event culminates in a closing ceremony video that keeps the energy alive and sends attendees back to their home base with a renewed sense of connection. 



You can keep the spark alive by following up after the activation with communications that reinforce your messaging and sustain the connection. 

  • Recap Email with Teaser: A post-event email arrives, recapping the event’s highlights with a recap video while teasing the next exciting installment of what is to come next year. Attendees are also provided with resources, tools, and content to share. 
  • Thoughtful Mailer: A personalized mailer from an executive arrives, containing the merchandise chosen at the event along with a surprise addition. Packaging is designed to impress and the personalized message reinforces the connection. 
  • Continued Engagement: An email brimming with tools and contacts encourages participants to maintain the conversation and keep the momentum going until the next rendezvous. 


The Magic of Media and Merch 

Throughout this journey, it’s also important to think about how the right merch and media mix can really elevate your activation. Take this anecdote, for example.  

Back in Haute’s early days, we curated wine glasses for a winery and crafted an accompanying video. One evening, using those glasses at my house sparked a conversation at dinner about the winery. What could have been a fleeting exchange about wine glasses turned into a planning session for a visit to the winery after they watched the video.  The video showed them what this amazing winery was all about and closed the marketing loop, emotionally engaging them on a new level. It’s the synergy of media and merch that fuels emotion and spurs action, turning curiosity into a memorable experience. 


Bringing It All Together 

The true enchantment of marketing lies in the harmonious blend of media, merch, and events. Like a well-conducted orchestra, these elements come together to create an emotional symphony that resonates with audiences. While budgets and circumstances may vary, the principles of crafting genuine connections remain steadfast.  

It’s not just about what we say or what we wear – it’s about the intricate dance of media, merch, and events that leaves an indelible mark on hearts and minds. Welcome to the realm where experiences become memories, and brands become companions. And personally, I believe it’s the cornerstone of true emotional connection and close-the-loop marketing. 


Ready to Get Started? 

At the core of Haute’s approach is a unique blend of talents – we’re not just a media house, not just an event agency, and certainly not just another sales enablement agency. We’re all of that, and then some. If you’d like to see this blueprint put to work for your business, be sure to contact us today

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