This weekend it was my birthday and so we decided to take our son into London for a day out. The day started with breakfast at Le Pain Quotidien in Covent Garden, a trip around HMS Belfast, the obligatory trip to Hamleys toy shop and finally dinner at the Rainforest Café. Oh and a trip to Apple to check out the iPhone6!

What struck me on this day out was how far retailers and attractions were going to make a visit an experience. The intention? To engage the shopper / visitor, to make it memorable and of course to make people spend more.

In this post, I will cover a key point from each location:

Le Pain Quotidien

A French bakery in the heart of Covent Garden that has been designed to look rustic and authentic.  After a few minutes you could forget that you were in London and feel like you were in the historical part of Cannes.

HMS Belfast

A warship now docked on the Thames in London. Parts of this attraction have been designed to engage most of the senses, the sights, sounds and smells all converge to create a kinesthetic effect.

Hamleys

This is just manic. The famous (and crowded!) toy store with a hands on approach to toys, entertainers on every floor wowing audiences with tricks and effects that make you want to spend. They know their target audience and they speak to them in a powerful way.

The Rainforest Cafe

This is a store with a restaurant underground. It feels like you are walking into a rainforest with sights, sound and tastes created to make it feel like a great experience… right down to the regular thunderstorms. If someone has a birthday to celebrate, the guests all sing Happy Birthday. To my embarrassment (and my sons delight), the restaurant sang Happy Birthday to me too! On departure, you leave via the shop that is every bit of an experience too. All in all, quite immersive.

Apple

Need I say more. Queues to get in, crowded store, everyone trying to get a look and feel of the new iPhones. Enough said. What was great to see is that other categories in the portfolio also had a lot of interest.

Engagement Is Key

These retailers and attractions understand that ENGAGEMENT is key. They reach out to different stakeholders and connect with them in different ways. Their aim is to win the hearts and minds of those that influence the decision makers. At 10am, on the 14th October 2014, we will be launching a powerful new tool that will help those in our channel win hearts and minds too. Be sure to register with us to be the first to find out more.
Register your interest by emailing kevin.brocklebank@oneredkite.comAs ever, thank you for reading & sharing.

Kevin