Experiences are the predominate capital of the world. A journey - drinking a reserve wine, attending a concert, a meet up with your online community - is what we value. Making experiences "authentic" may be the buzzword of today, but authentic isn't exclusive to millennial generation marketing. Today, my 65 year old mum expects authentic.
Manufacturing authentic is hard. Or impossible, depending on the perspective. One can't trek Antarctica or touch the highest peak, without at least a manufactured airplane, sat phone, or North Face parka.
I believe any experience can be authentic so long as it is authentic to the experiencer. Rendering an authentic experience is not only possible - it's critical. The companies who can consistently manufacture authentic will lead the market.
How to do this?
I believe for companies to survive and thrive in the new consumer atmosphere there must be an identification and activation of passion-ists. Call these "local" or "specialists", whatever the term applied it points to the same event. Tap into early audiences and allow them to authentically become your early campaigners. My upstart DSC taught me that only through specialising in specific product categories and experiences for our users (home fitness, three minute meals) could we draw in the right customer.
The right customer will become and help a company grow its 'tribesmen'. These early or loyal customers will not only follow but champion. They will be your manufacturers of authentic through their support and participation (online or off). They will naturally point your marketing team to spokespeople and ambassadors bringing the highest ROI. Authenticity will follow.
To lessen the gap between decision making and purchasing, tap into these customers and users and let them aid your digital campaign. At DSC, whenever an order was delayed or out of stock, I would write the customer personally and send a gift (often our mini bespoke coco-wax candle). The cost being inconsequential in comparison to the loyalty the customer would go on to show.
These customers are to later become your local influencers and their authentic voice and experience of your product will bring incredible value to your brand, authentically.