Retailers talk about going from runway to store and many have done so to great success.
Tommy Hilfiger has a new take on this approach by bringing the actual runway show to the brick-and-mortar store experience. Through the use of Samsung’s GearVR headset, customers can experience the retailer’s Fall 2015 lineup in a way they could never have before, in virtual reality.
Not only does this experience allow you to transport yourself to a fashion show in Italy without leaving the store, you can move around the show in ways you would never be able to do in the real world. For instance, you can get up from your “seat” and walk right down the center of the runway next to the model wearing the design you wanted to get a closer look at – something that would get you immediately thrown out of the show in real life.
One of the major problems with fashion shows is that designers typically present their lineup 6-8 months prior to the season, meaning there is a huge initial wave of excitement and interest followed by over half a year of waiting until the merchandise hits the store.
According to a recent article on Forbes:
“The smartest thing about this initiative however, is the fact it’s in-season. By that I mean that it’s taking a catwalk event that occurred more than eight months earlier, and making it relevant to today. The garments next to the setup are indeed the very same ones you can see in the 360 video, meaning they’re instantly shoppable.”
It is too early to say if this technology will takeoff and become widely adopted but in a way that is not the concern for Tommy Hilfiger. What they have done is create a unique customer experience, complete with a “wow!” factor that brings the customer a little bit closer to the brand.