Canada Goose Relies Heavily On Digital To Drive Experience In New Footwear Stores

November 19, 2021 by Dave Haynes

The Canadian apparel brand Canada Goose – best known for its pricey, goose down-stuffed winter parkas – has now expanded into high-performance winter footwear and added new experiential components to select stores.

For the recent global launch, “Canada Goose wanted to deliver immersive, and engaging integrated brand experiences that would emotionally connect with customers bringing richer storytelling, and fit experience to retail locations across Canada, USA, London, Paris, Shanghai, and Hong Kong, with additional locations planned in future,” says the Montreal-based “Integrated Brand Experience Agency” iGotcha Media, which took on that that element of the store design strategy and execution.

The results include a digital canopy that emulates the Northern Lights, using LG fine-pitch LED, in the Hong Kong store and, in one Toronto-area store, 16 of those HYPERVSN LED light wand spinny-thingies creating a similar ceiling.

There are also DV LED walls in London, Paris and Shanghai. iGotcha worked in LG Transparent Touch OLEDs in Toronto (the Yorkdale and Sherway malls), New York and Hong Kong.

One interesting wrinkle is a foot-scanning station – a customer-facing experience that syncs in real time with staff tablets and 3D foot scanners to provide recommendations on the best fit and size footwear. This is also paired with some lifestyle qualifying questions the staff asks and inputs on the tablets, and that data dynamically triggers our content and displays results in real time, reports iGotcha.

We knew that we would want to first connect with customers through large digital signage experiences that would draw them in and wow them. In the Canton Road location in Hong Kong, we created a stunning ceiling-mounted 6750mm x 1812mm DVLED entranceway. As part of our Canadian Heritage roots, we wanted something that conveyed the beauty of our northern paradise to the world. We designed a custom ultra-high-resolution 3D Northern Lights interstitial that mesmerizes customers as they approach the store exterior and blankets over them as they climb the front entry stairway.

At the Sherway Gardens Experience Store in Toronto, we wanted to take this experience even further. We elevated an existing experience where customers enter through a long narrow crevasse with rock-surfaced walls. The floor comes to life with digital screens underneath the glass that simulate cracking ice as customers walk through the crevasse. To heighten this experience, we designed and integrated the first of its kind ceiling-mounted HYPERVSN 3D holographic LED fan experience. This featured an adapted version of our 3D Northern Lights Interstitial, sound effects, and lighting that provides a sensory-rich experience.

Throughout the retail locations, we wanted to continue to engage customers through digital signage experiences.

We designed various larger-than-life DV LED walls in varying configurations and aspect ratios to best compliment the physical properties of each location. In Paris, London, and Shanghai, we designed a 3,000mm x 1,012mm DV LED wall. These screens featured beautiful lifestyle and product-centric content spots allowing the customer to build an emotional connection to the branded imagery and lifestyle portrayed. In specific locations, like Yorkdale in Toronto and Canton Road in Hong Kong, we also introduced transparent OLED experiences that provide complete transparency when black and vivid, beautiful lifestyle and product content when they light up. These are touch-enabled screens in preparation for interactive content to come later.

At the Sherway Gardens location in Toronto, a large round 360-degree projection experience inside the Elements Room is highlighted by a beautiful cocoon-like structure inspired by indigenous art and structures designed by GH+A that houses one of our digital foot scanning experiences.

“Retail brands face the largest disruption in history. The luxury retail category is among the most competitive, tasked with defining the future of retail. Brands will no longer win solely on badge value. They must connect emotionally in order to create brand advocates that will define their brand essence. Canada Goose understands that it’s all about providing experiences that will help connect, captivate, and inspire customers. We are very excited to announce the global launch of our Integrated Brand Experiences for Canada Goose,” says Marcos Terenzio, the Toronto-based VP Creative and Strategy for iGotcha.

He adds: “iGotcha Media partnered with Canada Goose throughout 2021 to provide an extensive digital experience strategy to help shape the customer journey and identify the role of technology and digital experiences within the physical retail locations. We worked closely with Montreal-based retail design firm GH+A Design to seamlessly blend our digital experiences with their beautiful store design. Throughout this phase of the project, we worked closely with LG for screen-based and DVLED display technology. We also worked closely with Volumental the leader in 3D foot scanning technology, and HYPERVSN for 3D Holographic led fan technology. As we began refining the technology, we designed and created the digital experience content. The goal was to establish consistent themes and desired responses from customers in both the technology and content that would roll out globally.”

Impressive stuff, and important for a brand that is selling much more to the hearts of customers than to their brains. Super-warm down parkas have been around for decades. In my youth in the frozen tundra of Winnipeg, most people got through January and February wearing what were called hydro parkas and bomber jackets. But the ones with real down in them might have cost $75-$100, on the high end, back then, whereas Canada Goose jackets with that must-show shoulder patch price out north of $1,000, and the new footwear line has equally eye-popping MSRPs.

That’s why experience and brand affinity are so critical to getting shoppers over whatever price hump they see. Experiential stores opened by Canada Goose have included things like cold rooms, so shoppers can get a sense of how effective their down-filled products can be come winter.

Nice job, Marcos, Greg, Kyle and team at iGotcha.

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