Technology is no stranger to retail at this point, and the window to be disruptive via technology is closing; or so we thought.
Silently, video games are making their way across retailers and asserting themselves as a big-time player in brand experience. What it really comes down to though, is leaving an impression with the customer that ultimately positions the brand to the forefront of their mind.
So, how are they doing it?
Physical spaces have incorporated video games into their stores for years. Big box retailers are continually creating electronic hubs which encourage the hands-on approach. But we’ve seen that before, and it doesn’t always connect.
Companies are now using video games to their advantage, as tools for product education, personalization and purchase. Chanel’s “CoCo Game Center” is an immersive beauty pop-up giving customers the chance at high-scores and so much more. Chanel even took the opportunity to brand these games after their products, giving them a persona of their own.
Yves St. Laurent has also drafted their own iteration of retail gaming, allowing customers the chance to accumulate digital points, eligible for redemption on any of their products in store. This is achievable through the various retro-themed games in the YSL Beauty Hotel.
Playing the game
Puma incorporated fresh gaming tech into their latest NYC flagship, not just to wow and promote play, but to provide a look inside real-world, adrenaline-pumping sports experiences. An F1 simulator, equivalent to the type used by professional drivers for training, allows consumers to race down virtual New York City streets. Soccer players and fans can test out the latest Puma boots on a virtual San Siro Stadium pitch, all while being coached by pro footballers Antoine Griezmann and Romelu Lukaku.
The video game market is massive and continually growing with the help of platforms like Youtube that showcase competitive gameplay. As video games rise in popularity, retailers will use it as inspiration for the next wave of the customer-company connection.