On the 29th of April, we examined how brands with thriving physical businesses are making creative use of digital channels to delight their customers.
Amid the April showers, we hosted our second Breakfast Briefing for Company Members in the Library at Shoreditch House – this time exploring how brands are creating meaningful and memorable customer experiences through their digital channels. We welcomed Andy Russell and Adam Goswell from Lush Cosmetics, who took us on a brand journey – dispelling any preconceptions about being a 'smelly soap shop'. Lush is a truly extraordinary company – with strong ethical values across sustainability and environmental impact, paired with an open-minded and inclusive attitude to ideas and business development. Their freshly launched mobile app, developed with digital product studio ustwo, blends both physical and digital touchpoints to connect customers with the latest organic, hand-made goodness to emerge from the Lush Kitchen. Dev Morgan, Studio Lead at ustwo London, joined Adam and Andy onstage to share his insights into the process of bringing Lush's sensory experience to mobile.
Following their presentations and a variety of intelligent and probing audience questions, YCN Insights Editor Sheena Patel delivered a punchy series of case studies from other brands; with businesses rooted in physicality, doing effective things digitally. All of which, along with in-depth interviews with Lush and ustwo, will be referenced in a forthcoming Insights Briefing for our Company Members.
Thanks to Sam Bush for taking the photographs below.
Six Things we learned
1. Emulate physical experiences digitally
Lush has managed to bridge the gap between the physical and digital realms by ensuring their collaborators had a thorough understanding of the brand experience. To commence the project, ustwo spent time at the stores, the factory and in the Lush kitchen. They experienced the tailored service from shop staff, tried the products and witnessed how they were made. Using this knowledge, ustwo were able to translate to digital a true picture of the Lush brand – cleverly incorporating the traditional Lush greeting 'How do you want to feel today?' within the app. Video content and beautiful photography from Lush's in-house teams were blended throughout the mobile shopping experience to communicate the physicality and sensory elements of the products, resulting in 'pockets of delightfulness' for the user.
2. Creativity can come from anywhere
Lush is a totally inclusive company – encouraging products suggestions and ideas from all corners of the business, from shop floor staff to customer feedback.
3. Release, then develop
Both Andy and Dev spoke of the importance of bringing new products to market speedily, then relying on user feedback to amend or make futher developments. A tried a tested method, ustwo find this is by far the best way to ensure that their products become the best that they can be.
4. App over Mobile Web
The app platform is a much superior quality user experience to mobile web, allowing for developers to build in customised content and simple shopping software – creating an all-round more holistic service for the user.
Cohabiting is the way to get things done quickly and effectively. Lush and ustwo worked alongside each other in close quarters and were able to bring their mobile app to market in just four months. By forming a tight relationship and having the ability to bounce ideas off each other from across a room, their collaborative efforts were accelerated and bettered.
6. Don't judge a shop by it's smell
The infamous Lush smell is no marketing stunt, it is a byproduct of their naked packaging.
Location:Shoreditch House Library,
London, E1 6AW,
Start:29th April, 2015 at 9:30am
End:29th April, 2015 at 11:30am