High-street fashion brand Oasis has created an experiential pop-up in London to preview what to expect in-store for Autumn/Winter 2017. Innovation researcher Harriet Cox went along to check it out.
Last month, Oasis’s The Extraordinarium pop-up told the story of the brand’s new season collection for one day only by immersing visitors in a theatrical curiosity shop setting. Clothes and books alike were woven into a narrative aligning with a piece of writing by fictitious author Oscar Angus Sis – or O.A.Sis – called Autumn/Winter Tale.
Visitors to the pop-up received a goody bag and could get a personalised bookmark monogrammed on-site, with a calligrapher also available to handwrite a custom keepsake of the event for each guest. An old-fashioned newsletter handout told customers about in-store events taking place at the brand’s nearby Tottenham Court Road flagship, such as a terrarium workshop, and complimentary rickshaws were laid on by the brand to ferry customers between the two sites.
Beyond the well-executed storytelling, the standout feature of the pop-up was the way it previewed next season’s styles. Adding another layer of engagement to the experience, customers who download the Oasis shopping app could use the barcode scanner to scan items they like in the new collection and request to be contacted via email when they come into store later in the year.
The brand’s take on the ‘see now buy now’ model – which has been explored in high-end fashion by the likes of Burberry and Prada – encourages customers to think about shopping with the brand in the future. Successfully building excitement around new products, Oasis were also able to gain valuable feedback (and data) from the event to get an indication of which styles will be popular.
A brand that prides itself on its customer relationship management, this is the first time that Oasis has staged an event like this. The employees that I spoke to at the pop-up said that customer reaction to the space had been positive, with many saying that they felt privileged to have been invited to the event and were already excited about the new collection going on sale.
Customers were encouraged to share their experiences of the event using a specially-created Snapchat filter and #Taletotell.
This strategy from Oasis fits nicely into discussions we have been having at GDR for next quarter’s trends surrounding experiential retail and the importance of layering experiences and storytelling to make customers feel at home. Spinning off from the initial product, the brand is cleverly creating meaning through every interaction with its target customer.
If you’re interested in finding out more about the trend mentioned above, or any of GDR’s other work, please get in touch with our insight director Felix Scarlett by emailing email@example.com.