Article

Karen Canty
Karen Canty 14 August 2013
Categories Innovation & Trends

Breaking The Fourth Wall - new Future Foundation retail trend

Retail is just beginning to skim the surface of experiential...

We often find ourselves discussing the resilience of physical shopping habits when faced with the onslaught of online retail. There are some things, we know, that people seem to simply never purchase without seeing; in other cases, a flagship store presents a bastion of brand that cannot be replicated digitally (yet). 5th Avenue and Oxford Street haven’t disappeared for two reasons: 1) there are important parts of retail that we failed to acknowledge when predicting the death of the high street, and 2) brands are emphasising exactly these aspects in their high street footprints. This we have referred to as Retail Reloaded.

 

Right now I’m investigating a whole host of new design philosophies that point to the exciting new ways in which brands could be building their stores. We know, now, that the experience of shopping is such an important part of the activity; simultaneously, numerous art exhibitions and public space have been experimenting with synaesthesia, multi-sensory, experiential interior and exterior design. Put these two trajectories together – I think the idea of the concept store is about to reach a whole new level.

 

Let’s take some examples. The recent Rain Room (pictured), seen in New York’s MOMA as well as London’s Barbican, is an opportunity to experience rainfall that responds to your movements: a storm that shields you dry.

 

Elsewhere, artists are playing with artificial light, modelling natural constructs – stars, suns, snowfall – in dynamic illuminated sculptures. With artists saturating every sense by filling spaces with interactive elements, sounds, and light, can’t brands be doing the same?

 

Take a flagship store today. It’s likely designed to look clean, modern, luxurious. Why can’t we have a Rain Room in a sportswear store. Or a subtle breeze with a whiff of meadow. Or the hint of a reddening sunset moving across the floor? It’s these elements – these experiential cues – that really make us want to grab a pair of trainers and pound the pavements.

 

The need to meaningfully connect with customers is an arms race of powerful messages and penetrative branding. Breaking the Fourth Wall – making space come alive – beats to this tune: the necessity for valuable emotional reward performed for consumers willing to exchange their time; a unique reward for custom.

 

Have you visited a space that really struck you? What was it that reached you? Could it be replicated?

Please login or register to add a comment.

Contribute Now!

Loving our articles? Do you have an insightful post that you want to shout about? Well, you've come to the right place! We are always looking for fresh Doughnuts to be a part of our community.

Popular Articles

See all
Digital Marketing Vs. Traditional Marketing: Which One Is Better?

Digital Marketing Vs. Traditional Marketing: Which One Is Better?

What's the difference between digital marketing and traditional marketing, and why does it matter? The answers may surprise you.

Julie Cave
Julie Cave 14 July 2016
Read more
Top 10 B2B Platforms to Help your Business Grow Worldwide

Top 10 B2B Platforms to Help your Business Grow Worldwide

Although the trend of a Business to Business portal is not new but the evolution of technology has indeed changed the way they function. Additional digital trading features and branding has taken the place of...

Salman Sharif
Salman Sharif 7 July 2017
Read more
7 reasons why social media marketing is important for your business

7 reasons why social media marketing is important for your business

Social media is quickly becoming one of the most important aspects of digital marketing, which provides incredible benefits that help reach millions of customers worldwide. And if you are not applying this profitable...

Sharron Nelson
Sharron Nelson 6 February 2018
Read more
4 Important Digital Marketing Channels You Should Know About

4 Important Digital Marketing Channels You Should Know About

It goes without saying that a company can't do without digital marketing in today's world.

Digital Doughnut Contributor
Digital Doughnut Contributor 5 November 2014
Read more
Collection Of The Best Email Testing Tools Online

Collection Of The Best Email Testing Tools Online

Don’t be afraid of email testing. There are many free or freemium tools online that can help you with testing your SPAM score, deliverability and even the rendering of your email. We feature 30 email testing tools in...

Roland Pokornyik
Roland Pokornyik 31 October 2016
Read more