news • Aug 10 2023

Bringing Brands to Life Through Immersive Experiences

By Justin Archer, Senior Development Manager

 

 

When it comes to attracting and retaining customers, the organizations that forge lasting relationships are the ones that personally connect their brands with customers. Whether it’s a cheeseburger or an Hermès Birkin bag, these organizations have used their creativity to establish a strong presence in people’s lives. In recent years, we’ve seen how establishing immersive brand experiences resonates with a customer base and recruits new ones. Here’s a look at some diverse ways brands have ensured their staying power by expressing their mission in a new way. 

 

Experiencing Entertainment IP

Retailtainment describes the literal merger of retail and entertainment by creating in-store experiences that are unique and enjoyable. As a result, the shopping experience is elevated. Instead of shopping being seen as a tedious task that consumes free time, retailtainment reframes it into something customers are eager to pursue. 

One of the best current examples of this is Netflix’s first pop-up restaurant, called Netflix Bites. Located in Los Angeles, the new eatery showcases creations from chefs featured on Netflix’s popular food and beverage shows like Chef’s Table, Iron Chef, Is It Cake? and Drink Masters. By directly introducing customers to the work featured on their programs, Netflix is forging personal relationships, and as a result, long-time customers. 

Thus far, experts have hailed Netflix’s evolution into retailtainment as a smart move. “Commercializing using a dining experience is a fantastic opportunity that allows fans to immerse themselves in a much more holistic way,” said Neil Saunders, managing partner at Global Data. 

 

Luxury Brands Meet Lifestyle Experiences

One of the most famed fashion houses in the world, Hermès made a brilliant move last year with the creation of “Hermès in the Making,” described as “an interactive and peripatetic event” that traveled around the country. Inside the event, visitors could observe a watchmaker, gemstone-setter, and porcelain painter from France as they mastered their craft.  

In sharp contrast to many other pop-up events, “Hermès in the Making” didn’t have a purchasing component. But that doesn’t mean the company didn’t see increased sales as a result. In fact, the series was so successful that it  made customers flock to the website in search of the brand’s items. By taking customers behind the scenes and immersing them in the magic of one of the world’s most famous brands, they still managed to benefit their organization. 

Some brands have found a way to create representation on a permanent level. Consider the Bugatti Residences by BinGhatti, a luxury real estate development in Dubai that brings the famed automobile company together with the property development firm. The 42-story development in the Business Bay area features 171 apartments, referred to as Riviera Mansions, and 11 penthouses, called Sky Mansion Penthouses. The French Riviera-inspired building has luxe features ranging from garage-to-penthouse car lifts and a private spa. The development successfully implements Bugatti’s notable presence as an elite source of design excellence with BinGhatti’s record of development expertise.

 

Toy Brand Destinations

In Mexico, Hasbro City is the popular toy brand’s first indoor theme park. In addition to having the instant recognition of the Hasbro name, the company is able to increase fan engagement with every new visitor that walks through the park’s gates. Their Transformers ride directly aligns with the popular toy and movie franchise, bringing characters to life and successfully affecting profits. As expected, statistics show that revenues are skyrocketing when it comes to location-based entertainment. The market size is expected to double to nearly $3 billion by 2028, according to a report by the Insight Partners.

 

As each of these examples show, it’s when creativity is channeled into the physical space that brands truly come alive. Companies should recognize these examples as powerful tools to truly engage with customers on a deeper level.

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