Turn up the virtual sizzle for summer sampling wins

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Three ways you can digitally supersize your sampling success with virtual tokens.

Here’s something you didn’t know: one could say you’re a first adopter. In some ways, without even realising it at times, we’re all guinea pigs as marketers use new ways to lock in our digital attention and craft new ways to connect with consumers. Previously, the virtual and digital side of things were often sidekicks in campaigns. In 2023, they’re the main characters, with Main Character Energy

And you know what? We love it. Creative tech has always been our secret weapon in the war for brand attention, and Virtual Asset Tokens (VATs) are now our firm favourite. VATs are based on super smart cloud-based APIs that blend the virtual world with real-life locations. They can connect you to your customer, anywhere, in real time. They exist as a form of virtual media on a ground-breaking new platform that allows the distribution of infinite unique digital tokens virtually, and they can be shaped to create marketing magic. Unlike traditional methods, this isn’t about broadcasting content – VATs create interaction with your brand by allowing customers to engage, collect and share through their phones.  

Best of all, VATs aren’t an overhyped gimmick. They offer industry-leading conversion rates and engagement, and they’re beyond brilliant at first party data collection (thus growing customer databases). Registration rates are around 50%, gameplay happens for roughly 90% of registrations, and crucially, redemption rates are as high as 70%! That easily beats the performance of traditional sampling tactics, but here’s the thing: you don’t have to stop doing the conventional live work. You can just overlay it with VATs to get the best of both. We’ve already shared some of our previous sampling and technology wins here, but we’ve added some new ones using VATs and a similar virtual token platform to the mix. Take a look. 

Three ways to turn up your marketing heat with virtual tokens: 
1. Create virtual treasure hunts for real-life rewards 

Burger King challenged us to drive customer growth and sales, as their branch footprint in South Africa is smaller than their main competitors. Our solution: a potent collab with an experimental artist (African Ginger) to celebrate a power partnership (Burger King x Pepsi). To make this sing, we created a nationwide, AR-powered virtual hunt. We dropped virtual tokens in BK restaurants, peoples’ homes, and even in rival burger-based eateries nearby. The digital strategy was supported with an integrated campaign covering online, radio, social, outdoor, in-store, influencer and PR. The prizes in play: 20,000 free Whoppers, thousands of BK & Pepsi meal deals, 10,000 limited-edition NFTs and an original artwork by African Ginger worth $25K. 
Bringing the heat: a reach of over 6 million, over 250,000 game plays, 90% conversion rate, over 70% prize redemption in store. 

2. Drive foot traffic with hyper-targeted drops  

The recent pandemic sadly left a lasting effect on pubs and restaurants in Australia. Local venues struggled to get patrons back onto stools, and it affected the whole industry, including local suppliers such as Asahi Breweries. Our solution for the beermaker: a geo-targeted Beer Drop campaign across 250 venues that harnessed AR, virtual tokens, EDM, and targeted social media. For a fortnight, we dropped a limited number of free virtual beer tokens (100 at each venue) that patrons could collect. The first week, these were up to 10km away from the venues, and then the second week, the tokens were within 50m of the venues. This was all amplified by geo-targeted paid social media and a slick EDM campaign with reminders. 
Bringing the heat: 99% of users registered for a digital wallet, 43% of drinkers redeemed their beers within 7 days (target: 25%), Winner of Best Innovation 2022 – IHAC Awards. 

3. Reach (and convert) your next customer at home 

Benefit Cosmetics appointed us to help launch, They’re Real! Magnet Extreme Lengthening Mascara. We needed something very special to launch such an innovative product, so we created a gamified, at-home experience powered by virtual tokens that rewarded consumers in an engaging new way (and drove them directly to purchase!). Here’s how it worked: after signing up and dropping a pin to indicate their location, fans used their phone cameras in AR view to collect Benefit’s ‘magnetic surprises’ that appeared in their space. Each item they ‘grabbed’ was stored in their virtual wallet and used to spin-and-win some “powerfully attractive” instant prizes such as virtual beauty consultations, full-size and mini mascaras and product discounts. Benefit also partnered with beauty influencers to share exclusive content showcasing the product on the virtual platform, and promoted the campaign with their 1.4m strong Instagram community to ensure a seamless mobile experience. 
Bringing the heat: a conversion rate > 55%, CTR rate of 40%, dwell time over 2mins, 30,000 users registered, and well over 15,000 prizes collected. 


Summer is coming up fast (hooray), so let’s help you harness the power of Virtual Tokens to turn up the heat on your current sampling or experiential plans. We can readily add a digital overlay to your strategy which will drive higher levels of engagement and conversions. Hit here to start talking. 

Author bio


I'm an award-winning entrepreneur, a passionate business mentor, and I believe that great things can happen when we work together to help others.