24 Aug Experiential Retail Marketing
What is experiential retail marketing and why is it important for me?
Over the last 10 years, the world has become ‘online’. People use the Internet daily to read the news, keep in touch with friends, study for assignments, and even search how to treat their cold and flu symptoms. The web has made everyday life so much easier as it allows you to complete errands without having to get off the couch. Amongst all these fabulous features of the Internet is online shopping.
However, as online shopping has increased in popularity, there has been a decrease in visits to retail stores. While this was initially a concern for retailers, marketers quickly realised that online platforms will not yet become a sole channel for shopping. This is because consumers need to assess the cost and value of the products they are buying and whether the product they want to purchase brings them any joy. This part of the decision-making process when purchasing a new item is particularly important for consumers buying products they consider to be expensive. The real challenge for retailers is to get customers off the couch and away from the convenience of the online shop and into the store. This way they might be more likely to experience the full decision-making process and be more likely to spend money!
An effective strategy to help get more customers to come to your store is experiential retail marketing.
Experiential retail marketing can help you stand out from your competitors and create a buzz around your store. It also provides a great opportunity for customers to form a stronger connection with your brand by physically interacting with your store. Some examples of experiential marketing that you’ve probably seen floating around on the Internet may make this strategy appear as an expensive investment that can only be afforded by the big companies. However, experiential retail marketing doesn’t necessarily mean spending lots of cash. The basic concept of experiential retail marketing is to give customers an enjoyable experience instore – which can be achieved by any business, no matter the size!
Here are three basic tips to spice up your customer’s shopping experience:
- Customer Service
Good service is one of the key aspects of experiential retail marketing as it helps customers form a relationship with your store and your brand. Train your staff so that they are well informed of the product and understand the brand image of your business. If you are selling hand-made soaps, go a step further and educate your staff on the process of making the soaps. Customers will feel more satisfied when purchasing the soap if they talk to a sales representative that can explain how the soap was made and how beneficial the soap’s ingredients are for your skin. Lush are a great example of this, their customer service team are highly knowledgeable and know the products back to front.
- Interior Decorating
Another important aspect of experiential retail marketing is making sure that the interior decoration in a store matches your brand image. Think about how you want your customers to feel when they enter your store, when they are in your store and when they leave your store. Continuing the soap example, if you want to customers to remember that your soaps are different because they’re hand-made, you can incorporate some of the natural ingredients as part of your interior decoration. A vase of lavender or a jug of fresh goats’ milk on the side on the side of the display helps invigorate the senses of customers so that they remember the “hand-made” aspect of your brand. Over time, your store will become an extension of the brand itself.
- Differentiate your physical store from what you offer online
If online shopping is centred around convenience and user-friendly interfaces that are quick to browse, then brick and mortar stores focus on the deep experiential aspect of your store brand. Of course, this involves planning and a little experimentation to understand what your customers find important in a physical retail store. What sort of information will customers want to find out before purchasing the product? How can we make this information exclusive to the physical store? Some information can only be accessed through interaction with products. With soaps, a piece of information that customers can never find online is the scent. Hence if you position this as an important piece of information customers need to know before buying, customers are more likely to visit your store to learn more about the products themselves.
If you are looking for more advice on how to take your retail store to the next level, don’t hesitate to contact us at Redsteps! We can help you create a marketing strategy for your retail store that suits your needs and budget.