Burberry’s first social-media store, in Shenzhen, China
Burberry has teamed up with tech giant Tencent to launch its first social retail store in Shenzhen, China. The Burberry Social Store is uniquely designed with a variety of materials and textures, from plywood to mirrors to glossy finishes. Occupying an area of 539 sq.m., the store accommodates 10 sales halls.
Burberry’s social shop offers a wide range of products, including the brand’s latest collections and exclusive items. All materials are provided with QR codes, which, when scanned, display information on the screen of the client’s gadget. This is the first brand store with QR codes on product tags.
Upon entering the store, customers are greeted by an interactive window. Inspired by the brand’s mirrored catwalk, the window reflects the figures of visitors and reacts to body movement. The window changes depending on the season, reflecting the latest trends in the brand’s collections.
Burberry dressing rooms feature three different concepts, reflecting the brand’s house codes – “Kingdom of the beasts Burberry”, “Reflections” and “Monogram Thomas Burberry”.
Thomas Cafe&# 39; s, named after the founder of the fashion house, features a modern, elegant design with glossy shades of beige, curtains and a beveled mirrored mirror. The cafe can be converted into a space for social events such as seminars, exhibitions and live performances.
The social store also hosts the digitally created Trench Experience space to «Bring to life the legacy of Burberry’s research and create unique and personal content that the customer can share on social media».
«The store explores this relationship by blending the digital and physical in an exciting new concept.», – explained Riccardo Tisci, creative director of Burberry.
«I wanted to embody this love of outdoor life in all the elements of the store, which can be seen in the prints “Kingdom of the beasts Burberry” in a cafe, as well as full immersion in the Trench Experience and even in the small details of design materials. I really wanted to use these familiar home codes to bring our community together on an interactive journey of discovery», – told Tisha.
«When it comes to social and retail innovation, China has become a haven for some of the most digitally sophisticated luxury shoppers.», – stated Marco Gobbetti, CEO of Burberry. Burberry’s social retail store offers interactive experiences through the TChatnt WeChat mini-program, which allows customers to enjoy exclusive content and personalized experiences.
«… The Burberry Social Retail Store in Shenzhen is a place of discovery that connects and rewards customers when they shop online and in store. This marks a change in the way we interact with our customers and we can’t wait to share this innovative experience with the world.», – said Gobbetti.
The Mini Program also provides a platform where shoppers can explore the store and product, book in-store appointments, and book events or tables at Thomas Café and public space..
The WeChat mini program also includes a reward program called «social currency», in which bonuses are assigned to customers and they can interact with each other. Customers can unlock exclusive content and personalized experiences by building their social currency. Rewards range from dishes from the cafe menu to mini-content of the program.
Burberry’s social retail store is a unique space to test and explore innovations that can expand to the rest of the Burberry network in China, the company said..
Burberry signed an exclusive partnership with Tencent last year to develop social retail in China. The Shenzhen Social Store is the first step in a partnership to interact with social media in a real retail environment.
Strengthening ties are taking place as tensions between the two countries escalate, when the Chinese Ambassador to the UK said that relations «seriously poisoned».
The Shenzhen social store is the first phase of a partnership whose true goal is actually to position Burberry as an innovator among Chinese shoppers, who account for about 40% of its sales..
«Burberry is well-versed and ahead of the curve in understanding the importance of social media and e-commerce to Chinese consumers.», – notes Sean Rain, founder of China Market Research Group.
Luxury brands are being actively marketed in China as residents are unable to travel overseas to expensive overseas stores due to travel restrictions during the coronavirus pandemic.
«China is the best bet for the most digital and social consumers, as well as a large market for retail luxury goods, says Siddharth Pathak, partner of the consulting firm Kearney. – The use of digital technology in stores has been widespread in China for several years, but this is definitely taking them to a whole new level.».
However, Burberry may face major hurdles given the growing political tensions between the UK and China..
Ambassador of Beijing to London on Thursday Liu Xiaoming said the relationship between the UK and China "seriously poisoned".
Recently, the two countries have faced disagreements on a number of issues, including the ban by the Chinese tech company Huawei on the introduction of 5G into the UK mobile network and the new Chinese security law introduced in Hong Kong..
«Burberry could be embroiled in a standoff between the UK and China. Chinese may boycott brand if UK continues to support Hong Kong unrest», – Raine warned.
British luxury brand has 61 stores in China.