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If Burberry Can Go Digital, So Can You

Who knew that when the physical and digital worlds collided, it would be Burberry leading the charge? The fashion company, founded more than 150 years ago, is breaking barriers previously untested in the retail industry — and frankly, their new approach to the in-store experience looks like something out of the Jetsons.

Last September, Burberry opened their flagship store on Regent Street in London. The 27,000-square-foot store is the first to feature integrated technologies throughout, including full-length screens wrapped around the store, audio-visual displays, RFID chips in their clothing, and more. By creating a rich digital environment for their customers, Burberry has taken the phrase “personalized shopping experience” to a whole new level. It seems to be paying off too, as the company is experiencing its fastest growth ever in online sales.

Burberry may be a B2C company, but B2B companies can learn a lot from their digital marketing strategy. Let’s take a look at two important B2B takeaways:

Personalize the Buyer Experience

All store associates in Burberry’s London store are outfitted with iPads that contain a log of customer purchase histories. Armed with this information, associates can make informed recommendations personalized to their customer’s tastes and preferences. Burberry also streams their seasonal shows live in stores, giving their customers the option to order products for early delivery and request personalized touches.

The B2B Marketing Lesson? Personalization, personalization, personalization. According to recent research by eConsultancy, 66% of marketers listed improved business performance and customer experience as the main driver for personalizing the buyer experience. With today’s marketing technologies, B2B marketers can target and segment marketing communications to deliver the most relevant messages possible, use dynamic content to tailor the on-site experience to each unique visitor, and more. If you have the tools to personalize the buyer experience, why not use them?

Don’t Ignore the Interactive Element

One of the coolest parts of Burberry’s new store is also the most interactive. Certain clothing and accessories in the store have electronic tags woven into them — and they’re not for security purposes. Whenever a customer approaches one of the screens in the common area or a fitting room with one of these tagged items, images and videos appear on the screen showing the item on the catwalk, or information about the item’s stitching or craftsmanship.

The B2B Marketing Lesson? Don’t be afraid to try something interactive. Content marketers have already started exploring new interactive options like topical microsites, drag-and-drop simulations, quizzes, and more (to see an example of an interactive microsite, check out our new Lead Nurturing Lab). By introducing an interactive element to a piece of content that was previously all text-based, you can increase audience engagement levels AND increase the likelihood that your content will get shared across networks.

It will be interesting to see how other retail giants respond to Burberry’s success, and what B2C and B2B marketers alike can take away from their innovative approach to digital marketing. If you have any thoughts, let us know in the comments!