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Experiential Marketing and Customer Experience

How apparel stores build customer experience and interaction using in-store touchpoints

Written by E. Nyberg, M. Soini

Paper category

Bachelor Thesis


Business Administration>Marketing & Sales




Thesis: Experience and experiential marketing Experience has been conceptualized in both academia and business. Research by Schmitt (2010) shows that experience affects customer decision-making and increases competitive advantage and differentiation of the company's products in a competitive market. The term experience is mainly used in two different ways; first, experience is something learned or experienced over time; second, experience is a continuous emotion generated through interaction with a product or service (Schmitt, 2010). In this article, the focus will be on the present; how the situation is interpreted, and the thoughts and emotions elicited from visits to clothing stores and memories related to these experiences. In his best-selling book "Experiential Marketing", Schmidt (1999) compares the traditional product-centric view (focusing on the benefits and value of the product) with recent customer-centric experiential marketing; and Taking a narrow view of certain product categories can also complement the customer experience by combining the benefits of using a range of products with a focus on consumption. In other words, it is not efficient to focus solely on product functions, because marketers today are using senses, feelings, and emotions to attract curiosity and self-image, rather than focusing on rational and purposeful interpretations of value. Pine and Gilmore (1998) mentioned that Walt Disney is often seen as a pioneer in the experience economy, and how he refers to buyers of experiences as "guests." In addition, Pine and Gilmore (1998) used a birthday cake example to imagine economic progress as consisting of four steps: During the agricultural economy, mothers bake cakes from scratch at home for only a few cents. In the commodity-based economic era, mothers turned to pre-mixed ingredients for a few dollars. Later, in the age of the service economy, busy parents decided to buy a pre-made cake from a bakery or grocery store for $10-15. Finally, in the experience economy, parents no longer bake or buy cakes. Instead, they outsource the entire arrangement of the birthday party to a company that can host memorable events and provide cakes as part of the experience. This example shows the increase in the perceived value of services and experiences, and how the world has shifted from selling goods to a more service-centric society. According to Pine and Gilmore (1998), if there is no charge, companies will not provide an experience. This is demonstrated by showing examples of coffee and how it can be sold as a commodity in a supermarket at a low price, while luxury hotels can sell a cup of coffee at a higher price. The reason for this is that customers are not only consuming the coffee itself, but also fully experiencing it. This leads to the conclusion that companies that provide experience can charge higher fees. 2.3 Customer Experience Richardson (2010) claimed that the definition of customer experience is broad. He said that it can be defined as digital experience and interaction, or focus on retail and customer experience and service processes. Richardson (2010) believes that to retain successful companies, digital experience, retail customer experience, and service processes should be combined to create interaction and interaction between customers and brands, thereby building customer experience. Based on extensive reviews of influential research on experiential marketing Gentile et al. (2007, p. 397) defines it as: The customer experience originates from a series of interactions between the customer and the product, the company or a part of its organization, and these interactions trigger a reaction. This experience is completely personal, implying the customer's participation at different levels (rational, emotional, sensory, physical and spiritual). Its evaluation depends on the comparison between the customer's expectations and the stimulus from the interaction with the company, as well as the different moments corresponding to the touch or point of contact. "(Note: The citation in this quotation has been deleted. According to Schmitt (1999), experience stimulates the brain, heart, and brain functions that give touch, enthusiasm, intelligence, behavior, and To a person’s social value. Schmitt (2010) pointed out that providing customers with a brand experience is essential to differentiate products in a highly competitive market. Pine & Gilmore (1999) pointed out that companies do not sell experiences, but create ideals and inspiring An unforgettable environment allows customers to experience something unique. According to Verhoef et al. (2009), the customer experience is partly controlled by the company because everyone responds to their touch points differently, such as: atmosphere, interior, classification, Price and service. It is further concluded that companies cannot completely control the influence of customers and their shopping motivation. Meyer and Schwager (2007) proposed that customer experience is the internal and subjective response of customers to any type of contact with products and services This connection may include the purchase process, the use of products or services, or verbal communication and advertising. The equivalent between these definitions and clarifications is the subjectivity of the problem; the process takes place within the individual’s psychology and evokes different behavioral responses. Feelings and thoughts. Last year, British clothing retailer Burberry asked artists to hand-decorate their iconic garments, such as trench coats, to attract customers to their physical stores in London. 2.4 Sensory elements Schmitt (1999; 2003) and Pine and Gilmore (1998) defines experience as composed of five sensory elements, which are: feeling, feeling, thinking, action and connection. Read Less