- HBR Blog, Make Sure New Features Match Your Brand.
- Veteran Creative lead Lee Clow on the value of a brand experience.
Inspired by JACK’s recent white paper about the value of the brick & mortar experience, here are three examples of brands kicking major booty in the retail space:
1.H&M’s new 4-story flagship store in Times Square (launching Jan 1) redefines the path-to-purchase by allowing customers to make their purchases from the dressing-room.
2. Under Armour's “experience store” in Shanghai is the ultimate hybrid of entertainment and shopping. Visitors are first introduced to the space with an immersive video featuring Olympic athletes’ stories. After the video, performance trainers (read: sales reps) guide guests through the store’s selection of apparel. CEO, Kevin Plank put it brilliantly, “we lead first with our story and bring the people into the best Under Armour experience possible before we ask them to try our merchandise.”
3.Intel’s pop-up stores: The B2B brand makes a brave leap onto the streets with the launch of its line of pop-up shops targeting consumers. The dynamic space will transform 3x daily and will allow visitors to test-drive Intel products and enjoy free coffee and movies. Maybe, I’m just a sucker for free coffee and movies, but chances are I’m not alone. This is a smart move for a brand in major need of an awareness boost.
Tesco, the giant UK-based retailer, are having a rough time at the moment. They’re the second largest retailer (by profit) in the world and earn £3 for every £10 spent in UK supermarkets, but profits are down…and this can mean a loss of focus.
And when things do go wrong and standards slip, as they apparently have at east London’s Haggerston branch (aka “The Very Worst Tesco”), customers can document and share that fail in excruciating detail.
Big data… or big whoop?
The Wall Street Journal reports that the airline industry stands poised to leverage customer data to “personalize” the flying experience.
The article describes a near-term future of cabin crew equipped with tablets showing seating maps and passengers’ details—thereby enabling them to be aware of personal preferences (the vegetarian, the honeymooner) and hone in on top customers.
So is this a case of big data to the rescue—or a big whoop about nothing?
My view: data is only as big as it is helpful to making the customer experience better. Data for the sake of data? Big whoop.
If airline brands mine and use customers’ data to sell them more (seat upgrades, for example), that’s a good thing for the airlines’ bottom lines. But if they can use data to make the experience itself better—saving customers time and giving them what they already want, more quickly—that’s a great thing for airlines’ brands.
This infographic from BuzzFeed came to my attention at just about the same time lululemon co-founder Chip Wilson’s cockamamie comments about how some women’s bodies “just don’t work” for yoga pants came to light. One’s hilarious, the other is tragic, but I’m not telling you which is which.
- Antoine de Saint-Exupery on leadership, vision and the importance of selling the big idea.
It’s a bracelet for remote tactile communication. Think Nike+ crossed with a hug. You and a loved one each wear a paired bracelet. When the other person strokes, taps or otherwise touches the strip on the bracelet, that touch is transmitted to the other bracelet and delivered via little moving parts.
If turnabout is fair play, then the announcement of Politico’s glossy mag is a sign of the times. Just as online-only retailers look at setting up pop-up and brick-and-mortar stores, online media properties are looking for life in the real world as well. It’s just another indication that to grow your brand today you need to eventually cover all your experiential bases.
"People said showrooming would kill Best Buy. I think that Best Buy has killed showrooming."
For some time now it’s been conventional wisdom that “showrooming”—consumers checking out merchandise in store and then buying for less online—would be the death of brick and mortar retailers.
A great article in today’s Wall Street Journal suggests that in fact, retailers like Best Buy may be winning the battle—precisely by embracing consumers’ behaviors and turning a perceived weakness into a strength. Indeed Best Buy calls its stores “the ultimate holiday showroom” and emphasizes giving consumers experiences they can only have in-store.
That’s exactly the kind of advice we’ve been giving retail clients. Read our latest article on Slideshare for 3 tips on retail success in an online/offline marketplace for more ideas: