Are You Really Measuring Brand Experiences? We Are.

Measuring the effectiveness of brand experiences is what clients have been asking agencies forever. GMR has the answers.

These answers will challenge preconceptions about how to plan an experience marketing program.

GMR can now determine ROI through a combination of our Three Factor Model, our unique understanding of need states (GMR Experience EQ) and thousands of hours of in-market research and machine learning.

GMR’s data-informed design capability around the science of memory-making is what we call the String of Lights Effect®, or SOLE Science™.

The best way to describe this is through an analogy. Think of your life story as a string of lights. Each bulb represents a memory. Some bulbs burn brighter, because those moments really meant something. In fact, when you’ve had a highly engaging, multisensory experience with a brand, you’re almost six times more likely to remember that brand when considering other options. That’s the String of Lights Effect.

Traditionally, experience marketing has had a negative perception for its supposed inability to demonstrate ROI. We set out to discover whether experience-based investments for brands could be: a) measured; b) deliver concrete ROI; c) empower clients to focus on forward planning with greater certainty; and d) fulfill people’s needs.

We now know that the act of creating genuine emotional satisfaction can trigger autobiographical memories that lead to consumer-impacting behaviors.


GMR’s Three Factor Model consists of:

  • Sensory Immersion – The number and intensity of senses engaged with a brand experience
    • Just as important to this is the extent to which your attention is grabbed. Examples include which senses and the centrality of the experience (i.e. was this the main attractor or simply one of many touchpoints).
  • Level of Engagement – The number of touchpoints a person is invited to interact with
    • This incorporates the number of touchpoints, the duration of each and the type of content aligned to that touchpoint. Examples include brand ambassador engagement; the presence (or lack thereof) of premium giveaways; or access to talent/influencers via the brand experience.
  • Relevance to Context – The degree to which the brand and its activation aligns with the event and delivers against the audience’s passions and interests
    • This accounts for the “fit” of the brand at the event, the activation components and audience expectations.

GMR Experience EQ consists of:

  • The four emotional need states that drive experience seekers
  • The experience territories that act as entry points for brands to meet consumer needs


We now have data proving how experiential activations that follow the Three Factor Model and GMR Experience EQ will:

  1. Drive a behavior change or enhance a person’s perception of your brand
  2. Influence a person’s decision to purchase your brand over another
  3. Encourage a person to advocate on behalf of your brand.

No marketer wants to invest precious dollars into a brand experience that a) falls flat, b) is forgotten (or worse, remembered for the wrong reasons) or c) doesn’t deliver against agreed objectives. The magic of SOLE Science™ will show you how to not just avoid those things, but create great vs “meh” activations and predict ROI while turning people into brand fans.

Read the full report to learn more about SOLE Science™, the GMR Three Factor Model, and GMR Experience EQ, resulting in the inaugural GMR Brand Experience Index© (GBEI), the first-ever holistic assessment on the impact of brand experience. In it, we share the brands that rose to the top amongst more than amongst more than 450 brands across 55 events in more than 40 markets across North America in 2022. Did yours make it?