We’ve all heard it. ‘Technology is amazing’. And we agree.
But not when brands get it so wrong when incorporating it into their marketing.
All too often we see brands using tech for tech’s sake, whether it's for a one-off campaign, an installation, shopping experiences or product innovation.
Luckily, with the help of some truly imaginative creative technologists, we're also seeing brands nailing it, adopting art-installation-level brand experiences within retail and brand spaces.
The result? A seriously entertained and delighted audience.
Here are 3 x retail examples you should know about.
1. Hyundai Motorstudio Design Room
As some of you may know, here at LOVE we're evangelists for a good design philosophy. They play a vital role in guiding a brand’s approach to design, but all too often such philosophies can end up as a meagre few pages hidden deep within a brand book.
But not for Hyundai Motor Company. Here is a design philosophy which has been brought to life in an extraordinary way.
Working with Universal Everything, Hyundai have created a ‘kinetic display experience’ at the Motorstudio exhibition space in South Korea.
A visitor centre dedicated to cars and transport, its promise is this: ‘Moving beyond transportation. A space that moves people'.
The design room is home to a 360-degree video wall, LED lighting and surround sound, all sitting around a central sculptural installation of 1,411 kinetic rods.
The rods dynamically move and ripple in unison with the digital displays, with the lighting and music communicating Hyundai’s philosophy of sensuous sportiness, human-centric design, hyper-connected vehicles, clean energy and future mobility.
The result is a truly immersive digitally-enhanced theatrical experience that lives and breathes its brand philosophy.
2. Samsung x KaDeWe interactive installation
On the right street, in the right city, not only can shop windows be the greatest media space, they can also become a groundbreaking gallery space too.
This was the thinking for Samsung's activation in Berlin’s iconic department store KaDeWe.
With the help of Unit9 and their agency Cheil, Samsung took over ten signature windows to launch the new Galaxy S10 phone.
Each window highlighted a unique mobile feature, creating a bespoke and interactive art installation within each window.
These included, ‘a rising sun to represent its superior charging power, a fingerprint embedded into glass to represent its ultrasonic fingerprint scanner, and a rain room to highlight that the phone is waterproof’.
Artful and innovative, the installation used a variety of advanced technologies to make them eye-catching and interactive.
For example, some windows used proximity sensors and kinetic technology to allow people to touch, engage with, and trigger reactions inside the windows themselves. Other highlights included light displays, sound installations and ‘avant-garde’ design concepts.
“The way Samsung technology benefits and impacts the consumer, cannot always be adequately translated through conventional campaigns”, say Miriam Preissinger and Arnab Biswas of Cheil Germany.
“Staging their innovations in a public space gives us the opportunity to present them in a fun and playful way. Art has relevance and moves people – just like technology. It was just a perfect fit".
With tens of thousands of people visiting the store each day, the windows exposed shoppers to Samsung Galaxy S10’s new features in such an effective and non-intrusive way.
3. Nike Adapt BB Self-Lacing Launch
Do you remember Marty McFly’s self-lacing Nike shoes in Back to the Future? Well, back in January the future became a reality when Nike launched the Adapt BB self-lacing basketball sneaker.
Dubbed the ‘world’s first app-controlled, power-lacing performance basketball shoe’ the Adapt BB comes to life when you tell it to.
Lighting up in customisable colours, and sensing the wearer, the shoe then adjusts to the shape of the foot and activity at the touch of a button, ‘so you always get a perfect fit’, says Nike.
Unfortunately, it launched to mixed reviews thanks to connectivity issues.
But we’re not bothered by that. What we love is the way it launched in the brand’s flagship House of Innovation Store in New York.
Created in partnership with creative wizards, Hovercraft, the result was ‘an end-to-end digitally-led journey that allows consumers to experience the product for the first time and find their perfect fit’.
Shoppers were offered a pair of Adapt BB’s, before being invited onto a digitally powered court.
Once the shoes adapted to the shape of their foot, the court powered up and game play began.
Coaches (Nike employees) could tailor the experience based on participants interests and ability levels, allowing the shopper to truly put the Adapt BB’s to the test.
But this was no ordinary basketball court.
Tracking technology and mesmerising motion graphics ensured this basketball gaming experience was next-level.
Like the shoe itself, this experience was seemingly futuristic, and Tron-like (if you're up with your geeky sci-fi films).
At the end of the trial, the player received a personalised, one-off, large format poster based on data collected during the trial.
Beyond this amazing digital-cum-physical sneaker trial, the experience was flanked with a series of installations that fused tech, lighting and theatrical futuristic staging where shoppers could dive deeper into the products back stories and capabilities.
Check out the video here.
This article has been compiled by our Head of Strategy, Neil.
Want to say hello, ask questions or challenge his cultural knowledge? Drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.