It feels great to take a seat at a keyboard that I just haven’t been able to pull my chair up to in order to type the written word. Inspiration sometimes strikes in the oddest ways and in the oddest places – this time it was in the grocery store – Aisle #6 to be more exact!
We make our way through our days and try to make sure that we keep the happiness meter pinned all the way on happy. It’s just that life has a way of throwing curveballs sometimes and so we must adjust, refocus and head back into the game.
While out the other day, I was running low on my essential vitamin supply. So I asked my Dad if he wouldn’t mind stopping by the grocery store to see if they had any good deal on the vitamins and various supplements that I take.
I certainly wasn’t planning on having Aisle #6 turn into a classroom of sorts for a student (my dad) who actually seemed to be intrigued into the insights into the science of retail and the paramount importance of design.
Great design affects us at many levels, but brilliant, simple design affects us at the subconscious level mostly – at least in my case. However, there was an opportunity for me to bring the importance of design into the conscious arena.
It turns out that Kroger (local supermarket) is doing a major re-brand for all of their vitamins. The old design was on the shelf directly next to the new design. It was almost a surreal experience to pick up the same product in different hands with the different designs and be able to be conscious to how the design was affecting my purchasing behavior. Whereas, the old design was something that you would expect from a store brand/generic – the new design was simple, clean, crisp and the usage of colors was magnificent.
So much so, that I can say with 100% honesty that the design had everything to do with my purchase intent and then with my actual purchase. And, I know that nothing had materially changed except the design, but it also played into a much bigger narrative arc in which the Kroger has been revamping the entire store so I’ve been changing my view on the grocery store for a fairly long period. I’ve felt that it’s great to invest in the shopper, and their shopping experience
All to often, experiential marketers and even your traditionalists overlook the true power of design. It’s so important because it’s what is directly affecting the visual input channels in our brain. So, fast forward 10 minutes into my little diatribe that I was having with my dad, and the simple point is that once again we put into focus how each and every part of the sensory experience is as important as the next. Even though we know that certain sensory experiences have a greater alignment with recall – we still can’t leave out the other points on the consumer sensory map.
As we move into the days of consumer journeys and shopper marketing – these sensory touch points become extremely pivotal because they serve as the VITAL on and off-ramps in the most critical thing that we as marketers deal with – the pathway to purchase!
And, this marketer was stopped in his tracks over something visual, and it could have been something that dealt with another sense, but this time it was visual. The pathway to purchase is a fluid thing, and we must always be consumer-centric with our thinking so that we insure that we provide more on-ramps than off-ramps in the daily consumer journeys.