Five International Event Strategies that Hit Home

June 20, 2018 | B2C

No doubt about it—some of the greatest experiential campaigns in the world stem from American events like CES and the Super Bowl. But savvy event marketers recognize that inspiration can come from anywhere—including beyond U.S. borders. From Europe to Asia and everywhere in between, brands are engaging attendees in clever ways, often leveraging the local culture to inform their strategy. Take a look at the following international event strategies from companies that are hitting home all over the globe.


In general, the Swedish are humble, reflective people—a fact not lost on Swedish automaker Volvo. With that detail in mind, the brand brings its values to market via the Volvo Getaway Lodge, a sanctuary tucked away in the Swedish mountains that emphasizes mindfulness. The experience is described as a “peaceful retreat for people wanting to reconnect with their passions in life,” and includes a yoga and contemplation room for guests’ use, along with a full range of winter sports equipment. The experience supports Volvo’s broader campaign for its V90 luxury crossover wagon, which stresses mindfulness and a work-life balance.

Burger King

It took BK plenty of blood, sweat and tears to establish its first location in Brussels. Access to the less-than-centrally-located restaurant is limited. The brand devises an experience-driven solution: the Whopper Bus, one of the most targeted international event strategies. On the way to its final destination, the Burger King in Auderghem, the branded vehicle makes stops all across Brussels to give Burger King fans a chance to get their fix. At every stop, tickets and swag are distributed to passengers, adding an interactive element to the campaign. It just goes to show that offering consumers something they need at the exact moment they need it is a strategy that works the world around.


Ahhh… Amazon. Where isn’t the brand these days? The ecommerce giant pops up in Tokyo’s upscale Ginza district with an exclusive liquor bar to promote alcoholic beverages sold on its website in Japan. The brand, which is beefing up its brick and mortar retail efforts as of late, designs a 78-person bar that offers up beer, wine, sake, and cocktails, including exclusive products not yet available to the public. Appealing to Tokyo’s discerning and tech savvy consumers, Rather than menu, Amazon’s bar features a sophisticated ordering system that also suggests drinks. To boot, the brand hires sommeliers that dispense wine advice on-site each evening. Kinda makes your local watering hole feel like a blast from the past, doesn’t it?


Consumers love candy year-round, not just on Easter, so to entice loyal customers, Cadbury, best known for its Crème Eggs, designed an entire experience around its confections with the launch of its Crème Egg Camp. In 45-minute sessions, “Egg Crème hunters” were tasked with tracking down hidden candy (“Hunt for the eggstremely rare White Crème Egg—it’s hiding somewhere in Camp!”) as they participated in quirky camping-style engagements, and of course, enjoyed a sweet, woodland-inspired treat. The experience served as a self-guided attendee journey, providing British attendees with the kind of laid-back approach they often crave. Food-based international event strategies are delicious!


Heineken applies international event strategies at international events! The beer brand offers Dutch fans, athletes and media a home away from home at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang with the return of its Holland Heineken House. The venue represents the only national house where all of the nation’s Olympic medal winners are celebrated, and, serves as a respite from the chaos of the Games. In addition to victor ceremonies, the experience features restaurants and food vendors, live music, sports-themed engagements, clinics with Dutch Olympians and screens displaying all the action from the main event. It’s no wonder the House is recognized as a hotspot at both the Summer and Winter Olympics. As Hans Erik Tuijt, director-global Heineken sponsorships, puts it, “It’s the fans that can celebrate, and the athletes really look forward to letting their hair down after such a fantastic performance, so the emotions are quite unique.”

In an industry that gets more competitive by the day, finding true sources of inspiration for your activations is essential. Consumers have no trouble telling brands with tired strategies that they’ve “been there done that.” So, next time you’re looking for a creative way to distinguish your company, why not take a look at international event strategies from our friends across the pond?

Check out events designed and produced by Sparks. Also, take a look at Sparks international work.

Posted by Kristy Elisano | Request as a Speaker

Caffeine dependent Jersey girl. Inspired by creative risk takers and underdogs. Chief Marketing Officer, Doodle owner and lover of all things chocolate.