Why Freshers Fairs are Still Relevant for Your Business in 2014

The Bam National Fresher Report for 2014 shows that the current student market in the UK is packet with 2.5 million young people with an estimated spending power of more than £15.5 billion.

With a survey of 1,100 stallholders stating that their face-to-face experiential marketing activity is 80% effective (beating social media with a 49% effective outcome) the importance of marketing your business at Fresher’s week is still just as relevant to your brand awareness and consumer engagement.

The survey shows that 48% of students plan on using new brands after seeing them at a Freshers’ Fair. This gives businesses all over the country huge brand building opportunities every year. And with 95% of all first and second year students that attended the fair planning to come back the following year, the potential for building up brand loyalty is high during Freshers week.

So why are students still turning up in their droves to attend these Freshers fairs? In a similar vain to social media success stories the answer lies in giveaways and freebies. 64% of students go along to collect freebies, with the intent to collect information about new products and brands coming in at second place with 35% of students attending for this reason.

Other reasons include joining societies (30%) social reasons (26%) to find offers and discounts (25%) and to search for job opportunities (13%).

“This report just goes to show that, although businesses are turning towards social media more than ever to promote their products and services and to push brand awareness, students are still turning up in their droves to Freshers Fairs around the country, eager to see exactly what you have to offer,” explains Debbie James, Managing Director of JC Leisure.

“This makes it a golden opportunity to interact with your potential customers; not only do personlised wristband and lanyards show a professional and dedicated team, but can provide students and potential customers with branded freebies to take away – the latest loom-band fashion trend just goes to show how popular this kind of statement has become for people of all ages. Fashion branding, along with face-to-face interaction at these fairs is priceless and still very relevant in marketing today.”

With fashion brands being at the top of the Bam Freshers most wanted for 2014 list with 43% of students saying they wanted to see more, offering unique, stylish and branded fashion accessories for free is the perfect opportunity to supply a demand – no matter what your sector or brand.

Also coming in to the top 10 most wanted for Freshers 2014 was Food Outlets with 25%, Charities and Volunteering with 20% and Technology brands with 16% of students wanted to see more from these sectors.

Freshers fairs also open many long term commercial benefits for brands; the study shows that 73% of stallholders expect to keep up the momentum after grabbing initial student interest at Freshers Fairs. This includes social media interaction and targeting specific student calendar events such as returning students, graduations, winter balls and Bursary installments.

“Although the main draw is still for freebies, the study shows that students going into their 3rd or final years of University begin to become much more brand loyal,” continues Ms James, “New students are much more open to new brands and experiences – it’s up to the business to make sure that when they come back next year, yours is the stall they head for over your competitors.”

JC Leisure offer a range of wristbands, lanyards and personalized accessories branded to suit you. Whether you’re in the leisure sector, pub sector or health sector – we can provide wearable branding solutions to promote your brand for Freshers week and following events.
Whether you’re interested in branding up your team members, or want to offer students and potential customers some bright, colourful and fashionable freebies JC Leisure will customize something for your business.