28 May 2024

Retail Design that Packs a Personal Punch

The retail brand community – a new species of social butterfly

The pot of gold at the end of the marketing rainbow has always been to succeed in building a great brand community. Success pivots on creating a captivating reason for would-be devotees to join, as well as there being some social and emotional prize to be gained through their involvement.

Central to the foundation and maintenance of any brand community are retail ID and marketing pros working in tandem.

What’s been happening recently is that interior designers have been given starring roles, as the importance of the retail brand community has grown. This ballooning craze allows individuals to immerse themselves in the physical as well as digital home worlds of their brand’s unique tribe.

And this is now travelling in an exciting direction largely thanks to interior designers.


In a recent article for ArchDaily, writer and architect Ankitha Gattupalli revealed exactly how instore spaces play an important part in the construction of successful brand communities. In other words, we’re talking about retail design that packs a personal punch.


In-store retail design for a hive of success

For starters, retail design is helping brands to differentiate themselves in competitive markets. This spin on the community marketing method is engaging customers within physical spaces via immersive and personalised experiences that match their values and lifestyles.

This has resulted in the design of retail spaces that serve as areas of recreation and entertainment. These spaces encourage exploration and a sense of belonging.

What makes this such a branding asset is that it attracts groups of brand-passionate consumers to actively participate in its purpose and ecosystem.

Ankitha cites successful examples such as Apple and Harley-Davidson. It’s no secret that their almost obsessive followers each own many products from the range, with the motorcycle owners regularly attending rallies. These people feel a sense of belonging directly because of the brand and other enthusiasts.

Why the retail environment has come into the picture, is because of a consumer-led craving for more face-to-face human interaction, as opposed to the digital marketplace.

One global brand which is taking this concept to the next level is Nike. Their flagship store in the Big Apple boasts a mini basketball court complete with cameras capturing games from multiple angles, a synthetic turf Soccer Trial Zone to try out boots, a treadmill with simulated outdoor runs, and even a customization bar for personalising Air Force 1s.

The whole ethos behind the store’s design is to promote active participation and Nike community building, whilst using the latest tech such as treadmill cameras which record customers’ performances for personalised sneaker recommendations. Now THAT’s innovation!


Meanwhile, beauty brand Glossier has created experiential stores which serve as Instagram-able spaces. Their Miami showroom is a great example which features a Glossier Canyon, complete with pink rock formations for selfie heaven. After that’s been posted, it’s just a matter of an East to West Coast flight to the Seattle branch to snap yourself in front of the Glossier Moisture Truck – a genuine vintage vehicle filled with enticing skincare products.

On top of this, Glossier uses its bespoke showrooms to host regular community meetups, parties, and product launches. It’s a beauty brand and cash register success story.

These are just two examples, but give a lot of food for thought about the range of options available for retail space design with attitude. And in a digital world where our communities are keeping us sane and grounded, their evolution within retail is an exciting opportunity for us all to connect with each other.


Calling all interior design mind readers!

Has this got your brain buzzing? Great, because if you know the space customers want to interact with before they even know it themselves, then we can help you climb the career ladder… fast! Our brilliant mustard ID team is waiting for your call, so pick up your phone and dial our hotline now – the numbers to press are 0117 929 6060.


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