Posts Tagged ‘fashion’

Love the new website-inspired Burberry shop, but not the payment process

Posted on: September 16th, 2012 by Fransgaard 5 Comments

The new Burberry flagship store on Regent Street in London is designed to adapt a digital-first approach with an aim to mirror Burberry’s website. I found this very intriguing so went down to check it out.

And the store is amazing! Every detail is thought through and on brand. Furthermore the store does carry the interactive, fully immersed experience through from the website. I loved the massive video art piece of clapping and snapping turning into thunder and rain. Brilliantly English (sorry, haven’t found it on YouTube yet).

Burberry Regent Street

But I am expecting the best from the best

And had it been another brand I would not be writing this article as the sheer aspiration is admirable… but this IS Burberry who is one of the leaders, if not THE leader, for digital and interactive in the world of fashion.

While the shop, the videos, the music and the staff was all excellent, my shopping and payment experience was not as good as it could have been. The theory being that there are no tills instead there are a large number of helpful staffs who can process your requests and purchases via their ipads.

I started by asking a store staff for the price of an item I wanted but didn’t have a price tag on it. Nervously accessing the website to find the price, the assistant was struggling to find the item, but eventually found it with a bit of help from what seemed like a more experienced staff member. New store, new system, new staff… “not a big problem”, I thought.

Manually entering barcode numbers

I also asked whether they had a different size of an item I wanted as well, but this turned out to be rather problematic question to answer as both my assigned staff assistant and his hovering, more experienced, colleague couldn’t find the item, which let to a somewhat awkward process where one person read out the barcode number while the other typed it into her ipad.

This was the first time I felt the experience didn’t quite live up to the vision of a website-inspired interactive store:

Why wasn’t there an app on the staff’s ipad to scan the barcode? Job done! In fact, why not make this available to customers so they can scan barcodes themselves?

In the end the staff went down in the store room to find out. A fair amount of time later it turned out they didn’t have the item in stock. Shame.

Why do I have to create a profile to pay?

But I still wanted my first item so next: Payment, right?… ehmm… no.

Before my payment could be processed I had to fill out a Burberry profile with name, adresse, phone and email. I never got an explanation why, but as I had been in this payment process long enough, and was keen to see the rest of the store, I just filled it in.

Could I pay now? No, my friendly staff assistant had to go away again to find a handheld swipe machine for my card payment, which left me wondering:

Since I had to fill out a form like I am on a website, why couldn’t I have filled in my card details as well so the payment would have been done by now?

My assigned staff member came back with the card machine and my payment was processed.

We said “goodbye” and I left to explore the rest of the store, which I can highly recommend you do if you are in the neighbourhood, what an amazing place with a really visionary idea behind it… just be prepared for a modern payment process that takes quite a bit long than the good old till.


Is the non-digital native generation missing the real value of Generation C’s user generated content?

Posted on: September 20th, 2011 by Fransgaard 1 Comment

Often when I go to digital events and conferences I can help but wish I had a time machine so I could go back in time and scream “I TOLD YOU SO!” in the faces of those who were adamant that the Internet was a toy and a fad.

Alas, I don’t have a time machine. But some times events happens that makes me think that I am doing the same mistake now as these non-believers did back then.


Such an event happened at SalesForce‘s recent CloudForce conference here in London where I joined a break-out session by the social sentiment company Radian6.  The presenter wanted to show how the Radian6 product helps companies filter social comments and identify the ones with the “loudest megaphone”. He proceeded to show a YouTube entry made by a beautiful young woman going by the screen name “JuicyStar07”.


When the presenter said the words “JuicyStar07” there were several semi-naughty grins from the audience who assigned some sexually charged undercurrents to her screen name and the presenter was quick to state that the video was PG.

The presenter continued to play the video in which JuicyStar07 was talking about her Louis Vuitton Speedy 35 bag and he brought to our attention that the video had received a stunning 2,000,000 views significantly more than the audience of most printed publications. Think about that for a second: More views than most newspapers have readers! How’s that for reach and influence?

Everybody instantly sobered up. No more naughty winks from the audience and we all realised the sheer scale of the reach this single video have. The presenter then posed the question: Shouldn’t Luis Vuitton reach out to JuicyStar07?

It highlights how easy it is to miss the real value of content produced by digital natives simply because of the presumptions we project on to what we see. We saw a young person seemingly rambling on about fashion nonsense. But the truth is not only does she know what she’s talking about, she also has a large crowd of loyal followers who are naturally suspicious and  largely immune to traditional advertising. She is the future of product promotion.

Is the Google+ common name policy missing the value as well?

Is the name “JuicyStar07” intended to be sexually charged? I don’t know. Maybe it was when she came up with the screen name, who knows?. Fact is: It does not matter. 

What matters is that changing her screen name would be PR suicide and I am convinced she is aware of this. Some of her fans may not recognise her as Blair Fowler but they all know and want JuicyStar07.

These were my thoughts at the time. I’ve since learned she is blogging under her real name as well but it still raises yet another issue with the whole utopian Google+ real name policy which my colleague Rick Mans has covered in another blog post. Sufficient here is to ask: Do Google really want to risk losing somebody like JuicyStar07 and her 2,000,000 views in a crusade to force them to use their real name?