Social Media Experience inside Bricks-and-Mortar Businesses

It’s a digitalized world, and in order to stay in the game, there are factors that retailers have to be constantly adapting to. One such adaptation is delivering an in-store social experience for customers. This is a perfect opportunity for retailers and venue owners, just in case you can’t establish a strong presence within the virtual world to cater tech savvies (which is undeniably a rapidly growing demographic). Assimilating virtual displays on shopping experiences, using iPads and several other state-of-the-art technologies can lure this digitally-inclined population into your business.

An adorable example of in-store social experience is offered by The Box Coffee Shop in Split, Croatia. This shop decided to swap newspapers with iPads instead. The initiative is connected to their vision of a green world while getting into the current digital trend. Another example is the Intel-Addidas project, called Adiverse Virtual Footwear Wall. It offers 3D spectacles of up to 8,000 shoes on a single, unified huge display. You can flip and rotate shoes, as well as get all their information and customer feedbacks through Twitter feeds on the same screen. It significantly reduces the amount of space that you will consume should you decide to display actual shoes.

Of course, the social word just isn’t complete unless you find Facebook somewhere in there. So, in-store social techniques are providing us a different kind of Facebook experience via the Kodak-sponsored Target Social Network Connectivity. It allows users to print pictures off Facebook images but you have to log in to your account of course. Another advancement that amazed me was the Citibank of New York, which now boasts interactive touch screens instead of paper brochures, a 24/7 video chat station to interact with customer service reps, ATMs that can take checks without deposit envelopes and similar sorts of digital advancements. It deserves to be called the futuristic bank.

Another term I can tightly associate with the “in-store” trend is location-based. It’s getting a grip in the industry as a powerful approach to lure customers. Groupon, for example, has accumulated $760 million last year. Living Social, which stands just behind Groupon in popularity, decided to team up with the biggest players in the commerce space–Amazon. Making a subtle transition to mobile, location-based mobile company WHERE released a new mobile app feature called Perfect Places. It takes social media nearer to local, real-life extent by recommending users to local place they might be interested in.