Nowadays, most of us are lucky enough to delve in the luxury of online shopping from the comfort of our own home. So much so, that we are seeing many brick and mortar stores closing around us. Does this mean our physical stores will cease to exist? Not exactly. The new generation simply have started to demand more from us. They crave an experience rather than just a store to shop in. This means to survive we must up our game as businesses. How we can do this? Through top tier customer service, indulging our customers with a memorable experience and by offering them tangible takeaways as a reminder of their time with us. This is how you will retain and grow your customer base in brick and mortar stores.
To gain competitive advantage against your online competitors you must make your customers say “WOW!”. The question is, how do we do this?
Interact with your customers
When Lifestyle Sports created their new store in the centre of Cork City, they knew they needed to introduce something that would stand out from other sport stores. They immersed their store with an edgy and raw urban feel with exposed brick and graffiti murals. They used astro-turf as flooring and included a high-tech Gait Analysis lab, plus a jersey and boot customisation station. They really pulled out all the stops to create an experience for their customers. They use interaction stations such as the Gait Analysis lab as service that a customer cannot be availed of online. Therefore, by offering these special services in store they are giving their customers a reason to use their physical store rather than just ordering online
Stand out from a crowded market
Another example of a company who hit it out of the park with experiential marketing in Cork is Dunnes Stores. They noticed how people may go to their shop for their essentials but would go to different stores to get their meat, vitamins or lunch. So, Dunnes came up with the clever idea to put all these attraction in the one location for their customers. They implemented a market style experience into their Bishopstown store, taking Corks most loved butchers, fishmongers, health store, cafes and cheese & charcuterie stalls and put them all in under the same roof.
This store is the absolute definition of what experiential marketing is meant to be. The experience touches each of your senses by the visual layout, the aromas along with hustle and bustle of a real market. It all encourages the excitement of being in the store. The immersive experience gives customers the opportunity to buy all their goods from the one shop which increases customer loyalty and customer retention for Dunnes Stores. If you haven’t been here yet, we most certainly recommend checking it out ASAP!
Give your customers something tangible to remember the experience
Carlsberg created the campaign “Probably the best poster in the world”, this was a play on their tagline “Probably the best larger in the world”. The campaign grabs their customers attention by offering them to pull a pint from the poster. This caused great hype around the brand and created many social conversations about the brand, which in turn got people to try their product.
After having a lovely pint from the best poster in the world, customers got to take the pint cup away with them. This tangible gift will forever remind them of the experience they had with Carlsberg. This memorable experience will be spoken about in bars for years to come amongst friends and strangers, increasing the amount of people trying Carlsberg’s products.
Experiential marketing is vital for the survival of companies in an ever-growing world of online shopping and increasing numbers of competitors in your markets. You must ensure your business stands out from the crowd by introducing memorable experiences for your customers. This is how you company will excel in its industry. After all a happy customer is the best business strategy of them all.