While retailers over the years have perfected the art of setting the right mood in their stores through overhead music and scintillating scents, experts suggest that in today’s competitive landscape, footwear merchants should be especially thoughtful during the holiday season.
Danny Turner, global SVP of creative programming at in-store media solutions provider Mood Media, explained that music will play a crucial role in the in-store experience. “Crafting the proper music experience in retail has become one of the critical cornerstones in building a positive brand experience,” he said. During the holidays, that role becomes even more elevated, he said.
Staying on-brand is key. “One of the most important aspects of developing a holiday music strategy is brand consistency,” Turner said. “Seasonality should not dictate a diversion from your core brand persona.”
The right music positions the customer in a better place to interact with the brand and enriches the shopping experience, Turner explained. “Holiday music is even more evocative, personal and intimate, and that’s the very reason you must approach it with purpose and intent,” he said. “Carefully curated music selections that speak to the brand’s attributes, demographics and aspirational targets go far in creating a positive brand interaction and affinity for customers.”
Jaime Bettencourt, SVP of business development and account management at Mood Media, added that the smells are also equally important. “Scent can help create the ‘feeling’ of the holidays,” she confirmed.
But retailers should be careful not to go overboard. “Subtle intensity is usually the way to go,” she said.
Bettencourt added that scent can “absolutely” put consumers in the mood to shop. “If a retail space smells pleasant and thematically congruent, then we are more comfortable in the space, which allows the consumer to engage in the experience more deeply,” she explained. “That translates to a better experience for the consumer — and more business for the retailer.”
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