Stores & Spaces (159)
Starbucks has launched unbranded stores before, but the new ‘stealth’ unbranded coffee outpost in the flagship Macy’s New York store represents the first Starbucks coffeehouse experience that has been tailored for the specific needs of the store’s shoppers.
Why it matters
It’s a bold move to throw away equity and bury a brand name. Starbucks, however, is using it as an attempt to evolve with consumers. As premium codes change, the things that made Starbucks famous may also make it less interesting. This is an extreme case, but as people increasingly seek novelty, the tried-and-true often needs to change. Short of tossing out all brand equity, what are other ways to push our brands to evolve with consumer taste and still stand for something? How might creating small customised experiences, even for a big brand, show consumers a deeper understanding of the way they live?
Coca-Cola has taken the notion of “in-store experience” to a new level with a pop-up bar and restaurant on the Champs Élysées in Paris by the name of ‘la Bulle’ French for ‘the bubble’. The pop-up exhibit was created to imagine the way people will buy and consume beverages in the year 2020 by using the best digital and interactive technologies. This pop-up space engages customers in a “disruptive, magical, and relevant” fashion. It allows customers to interact with the space, communicate with the brand, and enjoy an interactive and exclusive experience.
A few years ago, pop-up stores were a big investment. Now, because of the recession, real estate is much cheaper. This means brands can make use of temporary stores to take advantage of consumer interaction and the resulting buzz generated from them.