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“Retail brands no longer win customers solely on badge value. Instead, they must connect emotionally, creating brand advocates,” contends SEGD member and contributing writer, Marcos Terenzio. But how to do this? Marcos writes about his recent collaboration with luxury retailer, Canada Goose, and how his firm, iGotcha, delivered integrated brand experiences to connect, captivate, and inspire customers with the company’s new footwear line.
Canada Goose, a luxury Canadian heritage retail brand, took a huge step into footwear for the first time in the brand’s history. As part of their “Beyond the Parka” growth strategy, the company decided to diversify their winter wear by launching a line of high-tech winter footwear. For this global launch, Canada Goose wanted to deliver immersive and engaging integrated brand experiences that would emotionally connect with customers, bringing richer storytelling and “fit experience” to retail locations across Canada, the United States, London, Paris, Shanghai, and Hong Kong.
iGotcha Media partnered with Canada Goose throughout 2021 to provide an extensive digital experience strategy to shape the customer journey and identify the role of technology and digital experiences within physical retail locations. My team and I worked closely with the Montreal-based retail design firm GH+A Design Studios to seamlessly blend iGotcha’s digital experiences with GH+A’s beautiful store designs.
As part of the customer experience strategy, iGotcha explored several emerging technology solutions including, AR/VR, 3D projection mapping, and 3D holographic and spatial reality displays to complement the more conventional large-format LED video walls and digital signage displays. iGotcha provided conceptual renderings, animated presentations, and prototypes which our firm reviewed with Canada Goose during weekly sessions to narrow down the optimal solutions.
As my team and I began refining the technology, we also began designing and creating the digital experience content. The goal was to establish consistent themes and desired responses from customers through technology and content, which we would roll out globally.
We knew that we wanted to connect with customers through large digital signage experiences, drawing customers into each store – and wowing them as they entered. In the Canton Road location in Hong Kong, iGotcha created a stunning ceiling-mounted 6750mm x 1812mm DVLED entranceway, conveying the beauty of Canada’s northern paradise to the world. To do this, we designed a custom ultra high-resolution 3D “Northern Lights” interstitial to mesmerize customers as they approach the store exterior. These images now blanket over customers as they climb the front entry stairway.
At the Sherway Gardens store in Toronto, we took this idea even further. We elevated an existing experience where customers enter through a long narrow “crevasse” with rock-surfaced walls. The floor now comes to life with digital screens located underneath the glass that simulate cracking ice as customers walk through the entrance. To heighten this experience, we designed and integrated a first of its kind, ceiling-mounted, HyperVSN 3D holographic LED fan array. This technology emits an adapted version of our 3D Northern Lights interstitial. It is complimented with sound effects and lighting, providing a sensory-rich experience.
At each location, Canada Goose continues to engage customers through digital signage. iGotcha designed various larger than life DVLED walls in varying configurations with aspect ratios to best compliment the physical properties of each location. In Paris, London, and Shanghai, the DVLED walls ranged in sizes of 3000mm x 1012mm to 4600mm x 1012mm. The screens feature beautiful lifestyle and product-centric content spots, allowing the customer to build an emotional connection with the branded imagery and portrayed lifestyles. In specific locations, like Yorkdale in Toronto and Canton Road in Hong Kong, we also introduced transparent OLED experiences which provide lifestyle and product content when they light up. Touch-enabled screens were also installed in preparation for interactive content to come later.
At the Sherway Gardens location in Toronto, a large round 360-degree projection experience inside the Elements Room is highlighted by a beautiful cocoon-like structure inspired by Indigenous art, designed by GH+A , which houses one of our digital foot-scanning experiences.
To captivate customers and deliver two-way engagement, we explored a guided and interactive “fit experience.” Canada Goose wanted a new type of buyer experience, one that provided accurate measurements and custom fit profiles of shoppers’ feet. Given that Canada Goose stores are designed for luxury retail, sales associates serve as concierges for patrons; they guide customers on their visit, to help find the optimal fit. To accomplish this, iGotcha paired our digital signage experiences with 3D foot scanners designed by Volumental. Through API hooks linking these two technologies, we were able to display branded customer-facing results on digital screens. Canada Goose staff, armed with tablets, collect 3D foot scans, qualifying questions, and other data to recommend the optimal boot style and size for each buyer. This process allows a unique fit profile to be created for each customer, which can then be emailed to the customer and stored in-house to help with future purchases.
And now that the retail locations are all open? Canada Goose is very pleased with the results, and customers have been completely captivated with the experiences.
Want to learn more about the process and technological solutions employed by iGotcha within the Canada Goose retail spaces? Read Marcos Terenzio’s original case study on the iGotcha website.