Authenticity is Critical
With data more readily available than ever, consumers are looking for authentic experience. Knock-offs can no longer fly under the radar. Streetsense, a CBRE partner company, recently helped design a Hong Kong-style eatery in DC and, in the process, took several research trips to China. The design elements they brought back with them, including a signature red lamp they found to be paramount to Hong Kong dining, help create an ambiance that is a major draw for consumers—and their social media posts.
Cut and paste concepts have long been a staple of retail and restaurants, but increasingly, chains are looking to diversify their store experience and product offering based on their location or target audience. Brands are experimenting more with different styles of stores—whether it’s smaller, urban-focused versions of big box outlets or signature or marquee versions of smaller concept stores. Such diversification also helps retailers reach different audiences and test new products and engagement strategies.
The in-store and dining experiences have to adapt to the changing nature of the customer. Social networks and social media have changed the way we interact with our environments, and it doesn’t end with the Instagram-perfect photo. Many restaurants are adding seats to their bar areas and focusing less on traditional dining tables. Retailers are rethinking store floorplans, experimenting with larger try-on areas, unique display formats, and more interactivity between the shopper and the product.