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Published Sept 2014. Retail Focus Magazine. Brand Experience

“Retail focus provides accurate, high-quality, unbiased editorial content to the retail design community. Each month, Retail Focus offers an insightful and timely mix of news, projects, opinions, interviews and feature articles for those professionals working in this highly innovative and creative sector. ” Retail Focus

Whilst the digital age has brought us all the social media tools that can amplify ‘brand association’, physical spaces are where you live the experience.  You’re not looking at a screen but immersed within the whole.

It’s with some surprise that I meet brands today that don’t appreciate this, or worse still don’t know who they’re trying to communicate with. ‘Everyone’ is not a good enough answer. Everyone is no one. Bland, beige, lifeless. How can you elicit a response from a group of people if you don’t know what they’re into? Ultimately, there is no place on the high street for brands who are unsure of this. Neither is there space for brands who don’t know how to articulate their story through the use of creative experiences.

Helping you define this is the first stage of any Experience Design process. The answer is half analytics and half creative magic. In regard to physical retail spaces it’s about considering the environment as a whole. So where many design agencies finish with the physical elements, we use Experience Design thinking to amplify through sensory and digital tools.

Once in place, environments become more memorable and more relevant. Able to transform to mean different things, to different people, at different times. Whether it’s for an immersive brand experience, amplifying a campaign, or offering two-way interaction for information. Experience Design thinking provides a creative canvas for all of these things.

Experience Designers should have a broad understanding of retail design, creative, audience behaviour, technical and sensory tools. Collaborating with clients & introducing relevant case studies, best practice advice and partner recommendations. Managing the entire project within an organisation to realise the dreamer’s dream.

Darren Turrell