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Luxury fashion brand Louis Vuitton joins forces with iconic contemporary Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama

Key routes to creating brand value


Consumers have an emotional connection to great brands, which can create significant value through inspired products and compelling marketing. Companies with strong brands have higher valuations but shopping centres do not explicitly place a value on “brand status”. Building a great brand for

physical shopping destinations should be centred on an enhanced, technology-enabled customer experience. A fully integrated and future-proofed technology platform will drive sales by engaging richer customers and creating dynamic promotions. Rich real-time customer

Multi-dimensional retail


Satisfying shoppers’ demands for convenience and flexibility has become increasingly important in recent times. A real depth of customer understanding or insight is necessary in today’s competitive and challenging environment, both by retailers and owners of retail real estate. This in not an easy task

when shoppers are no longer characterised just by location and socio-economic characteristics, but by a more multi-dimensional space of mood, attitudes, behaviour, time and opportunity. For retailers it is now about

the brand and how they get their products to the shopper; whether this is achieved through physical bricks and mortar stores, or via a website

6 Summer 2013

or mobile phone is, in some respects, academic, as retail is all about 21st century technology. Many retailers are already

using technology to develop new means of engagement with their customers to provide customised and individual messages, which changes the traditional relationship. New technology is allowing

retailers to enhance the store experience and also to interact with shoppers’ locations using GPS to target their offers. The most successful retailers

of the future will be those that are able to engage with a wide range of shoppers on a seemingly one-to-one basis. Where does this leave the

owner and manager of retail real estate? It is not all gloom and doom, provided shopping areas remain relevant to tenants and/or customers. If retail is no longer relevant

to the end-user then shoppers will vote with their wallets and go elsewhere, whether it is physically somewhere else or online. While the act of shopping

may have changed, for many people it is still about getting out and about, being surprised and entertained by unexpected treats in shop windows or in stores, the sensory experience of feeling or smelling the goods, meeting up with friends for a coffee, perhaps even buying something with the possibility of instant gratification. There is still a place for the

physical retail space, but maybe in a different guise. In the future, the physical

retail space is going to have to work hard to attract consumers, with a greater mix of uses needed to keep them coming back time and time again.

data could be shared exclusively with retail partners, enabling more cohesive and specifically targeted marketing communications. This new wave of customer experience will drive both spend and loyalty, and realise sustainable income streams – all key components in creating tangible brand value. The “power of now” is

becoming increasingly important in today’s ever- competitive physical retail environment. Shopping centres need to mirror the intelligence, adaptation and flexibility of the “Amazon shopping experience”, and seize the opportunity to manage the customer relationship before, during and after the shopping visit. Smart investors will realise

that firstly, by buying a technology-enabled shopping centre they are also buying an integrated solution ripe for roll-out across the rest of their portfolio. Secondly, they should realise that implementing a technology strategy in a piecemeal manner will be more costly and less effective in the long run.


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