Evolving the brand experience

Branding continues to evolve beyond a logo and witty pay-off line and what worked years ago may not necessarily work today. Sure, we still work with some of the same principles but how they’re applied is different. Before organisations could get away with a lot more than they can today; if a brand posts a piece of content that is deemed offensive or inappropriate by their audience, they’ll receive swift backlash and the opposite is also true – when brands share content that their audience loves, then that content will be shared and celebrated. It’s important that brands  pay attention to brand experience, now more than ever. 

Brand experience refers to the feelings and behavioural responses evoked by brand-related stimuli that are part of t a brand’s design and identity. People experience the brand at multiples points, from seeking the product/service, shopping, receiving and when they actually make use of the product or service.We live in a time where seeking a product or service can take up to minutes, mobile allows consumers to browse and buy all on their phone and on-the-go. Consumers are able to easily access the brands that they love, directly by going straight to the website or by visiting a company’s page or via another channel and all the while, the consumers is interacting with the brand without touching the product, entering the store or talking to an assistant. 

Therefore, it has become essential that brands ensure that the they give consumers an experience that is personalised, uncomplicated and also create unique ways for consumers to experience the brand. Sports apparel giant, Nike, offers their consumers various avenues to engage with the brand – website, apps, social media, stores, etc. Nike segments their audience to ensure that everyone gets content, promotions and product suggestions aligned to them; brands cannot afford to treat online as an afterthought because it’s not – it’s an extension of your brand and another path to connecting with the brand. 

Air Jordan II Tinker launch on Snapchat

The launch of the Air Jordan III Tinker on Snapchat is a great example of a brand providing its consumers with a unique and seamless shopping experience. The collaboration between Nike’s Jordan brand, Darkstore and Snapchat, married social media, e-commerce and artificial intelligence to give their consumers a shopping experience that used technology to make the experience of buying exciting. The sale of the Air Jordan III Tinker is the first time a product was sold on Snapchat by a brand other than Snap. The sneaker was sold at the Jumpman All-Star after party in Los Angeles; attendees were given an exclusive code that would take them to Snapchat to complete their purchase but it didn’t stop there, once users were on Snapchat they could project a 3D augmented reality version of Michael Jordan in flight, wearing the Air Jordan III Tinker’s, that consumers could purchase by clicking on it. The entire process of buying the sneaker happens on Snapchat, allowing users to finish their purchase within minutes and receive their sneaker in under two hours.

 

Dresden gets personal

Australian eyewear retailer, Dresden, plans on changing the face of the vision industry by providing consumers with eyecare that’s affordable, fashionable and sustainable. Dresden’s unique selling point is that their products are made locally, and sustainably, through a zero waste process, and are affordable for everyone. Their glasses come in one frame shape and every part of the glasses is interchangeable, allowing consumers to personalise every element of their glasses. Dresden takes it a step further by giving consumers a great buying experience both online and IRL – online they make the experience of buying on their website fun and practical just like the brand. The same way you can customize your pair in-store, you can do so online.

The ecommerce experience is well packaged – every level of the experience is beautifully designed, well-considered and consistent with the brand’s personality. Which explains the why Dresden’s sales conversion rate has doubled since they redesigned the online shopping experience.

 

Experiential at Apple

 

In 2017 tech giant, Apple, launched a series of free creative sessions that would be held at Apple stores all over the world called Today at Apple. The sessions are about sharing skills, creativity and showing participants how they can use Apple products to create and teach. Since launching, there have been over 18 000 sessions held at various Apple stores around the world. Today at Apple is a great example of a brand creating unique experiences for its customers, that brings them into the store and allows them to engage with the product in an exciting way and doesn’t feel they’re being sold a product.

Audiences want personalised experiences, they want the process of buying online to be simple and with an interface that’s easy to use and they want to be excited and brands have no choice but to deliver. Not giving consumers memorable experiences is a risk marketers don’t want to take, especially today when consumers have so many options when it comes to where they spend their money. The evolution of social media and retail provides marketers with an opportunity to forge deeper connections with consumers and serve their market better. That being said, marketers still need to pay attention to the physical touchpoints. The in-store experience has to be as simple and delightful as the online experience; every element of the brand is important and should work together to drive an action.

 

Cole Ndelu graduated from the Stellenbosch Academy of Design and Photography with a degree in Visual Communication. She is an internationally awarded photographer and is part of this years class of Design Indaba Emerging Creatives. She is a content producer at HKLM, specializing in social media management, PR and strategy.

Cole Ndelu

Cole Ndelu graduated from the Stellenbosch Academy of Design and Photography with a degree in Visual Communication. She is an internationally awarded photographer and is part of this years class of Design Indaba Emerging Creatives. She is a content producer at HKLM, specializing in social media management, PR and strategy.

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