How Retail Spaces Can Forge Connections With Community Events

How Retail Spaces Can Forge Connections With Community Events
Cafe & Restaurant

PSFK's Future of Retail 2018 report takes a look at social events and experiences that bring communities together within stores

PSFK Labs
  • 27 december 2017

Today’s highly connected shopper doesn’t think in terms of physical, online or mobile. They simply want to shop with their preferred store or brand how and when they want, and enjoy the best experience possible when they do. To reach out to this new type of consumer, retailers need to start treating their physical space as a more dynamic and personalized space for each shopper.

With this change, retailers and brands should focus on amplifying the qualities that make physical stores so special—human connection, tactile experiences and product curation. Freed from the need to display endless aisles of inventory, smaller footprint showrooms can focus on actively building community among shoppers.

This community-building is part of a larger trend we are calling Third Space Connections in our latest Future of Retail report. To provide an aspect of social fulfillment to retail, stores and mall operators are creating community spaces and experiences that bring people together around the halo of a brand and offer new occasions to visit outside of the shopping trip.

Describing how this is represented in her stores, Rebecca Minkoff said, “We want to make our stores a hub of community. We host fireside chats, we host art openings, we host female entrepreneurs who want to launch something.”

This sentiment is echoed in the data of actual consumers. Eventbrite found that 69% of millennials believe attending live events and experiences makes them more connected to other people, the community and the world.

GAME Digital devoted sections of its stores across the U.K. to Belong, a community space where gamers can pay to play together, rather than remotely.

To better understand this concept, we took a closer look at how brands and retailers are building upon this idea:

Selfridges’ Music Matters campaign is turning spaces within the retailer’s London, Manchester and Birmingham locations into live music venues. The Music Matters campaign includes a list of special artist performances, fun family activities, DJ lessons and silent discos that happen in-store after traditional shopping hours. By creating events around the topic of music, the British department store establishes a more authentic connection to its music-inspired fashion and beauty collections.

Marks & Spencer is hosting fortnightly “Frazzled Cafe” meetings in locations across the U.K., welcoming people to discuss their feelings, stories and challenges associated with mental health. In partnership with non-profit Frazzled Cafe, the meetings operate with the purpose of providing a safe, anonymous and non-judgmental environment where people who are feeling frazzled can meet on a regular basis to talk and share their personal stories. The British multi-retailer is offering the events not only for people who identity as suffering from mental illness, but for everyone who is feeling overwhelmed by the stresses of modern life.

The Future of Retail 2018 outlines how companies can transform their stores into experience centers that extend their supply chain and digital commerce platforms, creating mutual value with a focus on shopper experience. Members can download the report today or all readers can immerse themselves in the findings at our retail sessions on Jan. 17, 2018.

Today’s highly connected shopper doesn’t think in terms of physical, online or mobile. They simply want to shop with their preferred store or brand how and when they want, and enjoy the best experience possible when they do. To reach out to this new type of consumer, retailers need to start treating their physical space as a more dynamic and personalized space for each shopper.

+apparel
+customer experience
+Europe
+experiential marketing
+Fashion
+future of retail 2018
+Gaming & Play
+IoT
+marks & spencer
+Millennials
+mobile
+psfk labs
+retail
+selfridges
+UK
+USA

Learn About Our Membership Services

Need Research Help?
As a member you can ask us any research questions and get complimentary research assistance with a 4-day turnaround. Reports inclde stats, quotes, and best-inclass examples on research topics.
Remain Informed & Strategic
We publish several trends reports each month. By becoming a member you will have access to over 100 existing reports, plus a growing catalog of deep topical analysis and debrief-style reports so you always remain in the know.
See Trends Come To Life
Meet your peers and immerse yourself in monthly trend and innovation webinars and discounted conferences.
No search results found.