In today’s digitally driven world, e-commerce is dominating, retailers are becoming defined by their social media presence, and one-click purchases are the expectation. Heritage brands are seeking creative ways to grow with consumer lifestyles and new brands are challenged to cut through the clutter of the internet. With fewer opportunities for consumer-facing interaction, brands must create retail store environments that offer the richness of one-on-one exchanges along with the convenience of digital solutions.
It’s no secret that consumers are more likely to purchase products they’ve tried. This is the foundation of the booming experiential marketing industry. According to the Association of National Advertisers, annual brand activation spending was over $560 million in 2015 and is expected to reach $740 billion by 2020.
Unfortunately, while in-field activations excel in driving awareness and brand loyalty, unless you have a POS system on-site, you’re not making direct product sales. Brands need to get their target audience into the retail stores for that.
This poses the million-dollar question: How do brands drive consumer loyalty and sales through meaningful in-store experiences in the digital era?
Taking cues from some of the brightest minds in event marketing, brands are transforming spaces into experiential havens that seamlessly blend the worlds of digital and physical.
The result: Experiential Retail. And just like many experiential strategies, the goal is to immerse the consumer in the brand and allow the sales to follow.
Take a closer look at NYX Professional Makeup, a digital-native turned experiential retail innovator that’s redefining the brick and mortar experience.
NYX Professional Makeup stores set a high bar for experiential retail. The cosmetic fangirl’s playground is both a socially entrenched and physically interactive experience that adopts the following methods for engaging with its media-savvy consumers:
- Beauty Bars double as interactive tutorial stations providing pointers and how-to’s for testing NYX products in real-time
- TV monitors serve up the latest user-generated social content, providing shoppers with inspiration and direction.
- Interactive discovery stations (touch screens built into product displays) encourage consumers to scan or search products to yield
- Instagram photos of other NYX consumers wearing the selected product/shade.
- Further embracing its cult-like Instagram following, NYX holds exclusive in-store Meet & Greets with its most popular brand influencers to create an immersive social media experience in the retail environment.
NYX Professional Makeup’s answer to this challenge plaguing all retailers is genius and brand professionals from any industry can and should take note. For another example of NYX Professional Makeup’s love for experiential marketing, take a look our case study on the Union Square Beauty+Swag Truck and Flagship Store Grand Opening produced by EventNetUSA.