The excitement of in-store discovery is back with a bang thanks to the unbelievable transformation of beauty pop-ups over the past 12 months.
Gone are the old school selfie walls and Instagrammable ball pits as key attractions, replaced with a refined focus on gamification and the experiential.
Touchless digital experiences and immersive elements that reward customers for engagement have delivered unmissable and luxury events.
“Experiential is buzzworthy,” says Nicole Falco, Partner at marketing firm TH Experiential Agency, which helps beauty companies like Sephora and Benefit market pop-ups.
“At these spaces, you can empower people to learn, try and play via a personalised experience, while facilitating retail, data collection and qualitative feedback.
“Plus, pop-ups are a much stronger touchpoint for converting people as all demographics, especially Gen Z, are not as receptive to traditional advertising as before.”
The era of the luxury pop-up 2.0
The age-old retail trend took on many new forms in 2022, which has catapulted the concept to another level.
The Inkey List’s ten-day immersive space in London’s Covent Garden in March integrated physical and digital elements so visitors could build their own skin care recipe.
On entry, consumers created a myINKEY profile on their mobile, which allowed them to add products to their basket based on the British brand’s recommended five-step routine.
Guests scanned QR codes in each zone – Clean, Hydrate, Treat, Moisturise and SPF & Scalp – to access content on products and save their preferred choices. These were then delivered to their home.
Visitors could also learn more about the products by either interacting with the brand’s on-site experts or testing their ingredient knowledge with a series of interactive mobile games, providing the best of both worlds.
The Inkey List's London pop-up merged mobile games with in-person expertise
Drunk Elephant’s two-day France-based activation ‘House of Drunk Paris’ in October gave visitors a “feast for the senses”, with a focus on engagement to drive brand loyalty.
The space was dressed with playful and social-worthy motifs in the skin care brand’s colour palette, combined with immersive experiences.
A personalised Smoothie Mixing Station, bespoke charm creating station and interactive walk through ‘Ceramighty Tunnel’ – which taught guests about its latest Ceramighty AF Eye Balm – were among them.
At these spaces, you can empower people to learn, try and play via a personalised experience, while facilitating retail, data collection and qualitative feedback
- Nicole Falco
Make-up brand Shiseido’s seven-day London pop-up in September, meanwhile, not only included educational masterclasses and panels, but featured digital interaction points.
When standing in front of an immersive screen, guests were encouraged to interact with it by moving their body, which created a piece of digital art they could post on Instagram using a QR code.