Burberry debuts Social Retail Store in Shenzhen, China
by Julia Pott (exclusively for EuroShop.mag)
Last year, iconic British luxury brand Burberry launched a new store concept that puts social media at its center. The Shenzhen store is designed to entice shoppers with an interactive and immersive retail experience that combines the physical and digital worlds.
“When it came to innovating around social and retail, China was the obvious place to go as home to some of the most digitally savvy luxury customers,” Marco Gobbetti, CEO of Burberry explains why the brand chose this location for its pioneering experiment.
Burberry’s store design in Shenzhen
The store, which covers an impressive 500 square meters/5800 square feet, features a total of ten rooms and a series of spaces with their own unique design.
Interactive shopping experience centers on a WeChat mini-program
The retail space allows customers to enhance or share their experience through a special WeChat mini-program – an app in an app. In partnership with Tencent Technology, a Chinese multinational technology conglomerate holding company, Burberry implemented the concept and developed a custom sub-application within the Chinese WeChat ecosystem. “The first step in an exclusive partnership between our companies, Burberry’s social retail store in Shenzhen is a place of discovery that connects and rewards customers as they explore online and in store,” says Marco Gobbetti about the collaboration.
Customers use the WeChat Burberry app to explore the store and access product information. The app has dedicated features for each store area to provide access to digital content, unlock services, book in-store appointments or make reservations.
The more customers engage and interact with the WeChat app, the more “rewards” they can earn through Burberry’s digital “social currency” function. Store visitors use this currency to unlock new, exclusive content and personalized experiences such as select services and access to products, digital contents, or promotions.
Here are just some of the ways customers can interact with the Burberry store:
Here is what it looks like when Burberry customers share their photos:
Customers becoming brand ambassadors and brand promoters is an aspect of increasing importance. User-generated content enjoys rising influence over marketing messages from the brand itself. More and more, consumers look to their peers for recommendations and advice. Cool photos and shared exciting experiences incentivize shoppers more than any professionally created advertising campaign. The store in Shenzhen is not only a marketing success for Burberry, but it is also a unique way to test and learn, and to trial and assess innovation that can subsequently be taken into other Burberry stores.