Great Experiential Marketing: Microsoft’s Inner Circle event


To show off the capabilities of ‘Cortana’, Microsoft’s new digital personal assistant for smartphones, the tech giant hosted an interactive experiential event in New York.


The interactive event, dubbed ‘Inner Circle’, built individual experiences for the 150 or so attendees. To ensure a personalised experience for every guest, each was required to fill out a Microsoft questionnaire prior to the event. The quiz consisted of questions such as “It’s cheat night. What are you most likely indulging in?” and “What song is most likely to get you on the dance floor?”microsoft_inner_circle_experience_3

A circular tour led guests to a series of freestanding screens. When they touched their I-D badges (which held all of their recorded data) to the displays, the screens demonstrated how Cortana creates reminders and schedules around users’ personal preferences. For example, one of the screens generated traffic updates based on a user’s usual daily commute.microsoft_inner_circle_experience_4

In the centre of the spiralling installation was the reception space, which consisted of a circular bar, device displays, and some pretty nifty experiential activations for Microsoft to show off its technology. As well as trying on outfits using a virtual dressing room program called Swivel, guests could also have their digital portrait done by an artist using a Surface tablet! Now that’s what we call experiential marketing!microsoft_inner_circle_experience_5microsoft_inner_circle_experience_6

Brands are always keen to build personal brand-consumer connections, but Microsoft really went the whole nine yards with this experience that was totally tailored for each guest.

We love fully immersive experiential spaces here at Because; they provide the perfect opportunity for your target audience to interact and connect with your brand. Last week we had a nose around Ray-Ban’s District 1937 event and we were previously impressed with HTC’s Skate Park in Selfridges.

If you liked this idea, then you’ll love YouTube’s immersive brand experience at Sundance Festival 2014! 

Author bio


With nearly 30 years of marketing experience, both client and agency side, I’ve acquired a rare perspective on brands and business: I believe you have to challenge things creatively if you want to grow sales. Consumer technology is reshaping our world, and it’s only the great brands that stay on the crest.