X de xmas, X de experiencia

If there is one time of the year that is particularly suitable for Brand Experiences, it is the one we started a few days ago. Across the globe we are immersed in an eminently festive season, characterized by family gatherings, religious celebrations and a great deal of shopping! The Ritual of the Gift as an expression of the best feelings of gratitude and love.

Over several weeks we experience an exponential increase in commercial activity, providing a crucial showcase to present new proposals and promotions. Undoubtedly, this season becomes an invaluable source of traffic for retailers and contributes to the growth of tourism for large metropolises.

Consumers experience these holidays with a mixture of feelings, a cocktail of dopamine, serotonin and cortisol, which together with social and emotional disturbances generate a heightened mood.

In this scenario, year after year brands and retailers redouble their efforts to create a shopping environment that accompanies the emotions, facilitating the shopper’s experience and inspiring them to live the moment in a special way.

This aspiration is not new: since the end of the 19th century and throughout the 20th century, window dressing and decoration of spaces has been at the heart of these initiatives. From the innovative window displays of RH Macy’s & Company in NYC in 1874 to the mythical ones of Harrod’s in London, this tradition has constantly evolved, giving rise to the theming of cities over the years.

Emblematic examples of this trend include Rockefeller Center and its ice-ring, the Shinjuku City illuminations in Tokyo or Berlin’s Christmas markets. These are just examples of the beginning of a new discipline that is developing unstoppably: Experiential Shopping.

Memorable experiences taken to the next level

If Christmas is the time of memories, the new experiences offered during this season are designed to leave an indelible mark on the memory. Rooted in the theming and theatricalization of environments, they are increasingly enhanced by the use of new technologies, especially audiovisuals.

In such a way that, in addition to extra-memory, multi-sensoriality is also stimulated. The simultaneous stimulation of several senses allows for greater receptivity. This combination, together with disruption and creativity, is unbeatable in ensuring a superior emotional footprint.

The possibilities are endless, and some brands and institutions are taking advantage of them. At Beagle, Darwin & Verne’s Customer Experience business unit, we have put together a selection of examples from which to draw inspiration, learnings, and key takeaways to consider.

• Coca-Cola, with its recent spectacular use of drones to project its Christmas campaign in Yokohama, Japan. https://youtu.be/msVuAZBOVHI?si=A¬¬0FZovY309poFzDU

• Covent Garden and its daily sound and light show… and daily snowfall! https://www.tiktok.com/@visitlondon/video/7309523730361847072?lang=es

• Gucci Beauty, with its web-immersive floral carpet, virtual fitting room and gift recommender. https://guccibeautywishes.gucci.com/#/en/

• Lego, and its Transatlantic Snow Throw, an interactive snowball-throwing competition between customers at its flagship stores in London and NYC, which brings to life the Christmas execution of its “Play Your Superpower” campaign. https://www.instagram.com/reel/CzwF0ousUKw/

• Rockettes, the classic Radio City Hall musical, and its incredible exospheric ad in the Las Vegas Sphere itself. https://www.rockettes.com/blog/sphere-x-rockettes/

• Uniqlo and Outernet, team up to develop the Enchanted Snow Globe, a great interactive Christmas show in which to participate by creating footprints in the snow through motion cameras. https://www.youtube.com/shorts/K6yR_68VppA

• Walmart launches a 23-episode, 3-minute Christmas-romantic series featuring over 330 products for purchase with the +ADD option. Launched on YouTube TikTok. https://www.linkedin.com/posts/madridcontentschool_add-to-heart-activity-7136043313261916160-gDnN?utm_source=share&utm_medium=member_desktop

• Jo Malone, the cosmetics brand set up a pop-up gingerbread house, with user experiences, product testing, tutorials, etc. https://www.tiktok.com/@abbeysadleir/video/7304743744765512967?lang=es

Phygital experiences.

These examples, and those to come, continue to leverage the hybridization between physical and digital experiences. In this approach, devices become extensions of our body to interact with the environment, creating a synergy where physical and virtual commerce intertwine seamlessly and naturally.

While we can’t say that “this has just begun”, we can be sure that we have only seen a small part of the qualitative leap that will take place in the Christmas Brand Experiences. We are looking forward to next Christmas to experience them!