13th December 2011, 10:38am
Retail secrets revealed at international gathering of design and marketing researchers
A busy shopping centre Secrets of how retailers use sensory stimuli to entice shoppers to their tills were revealed in a colloquium at the University of Lincoln.

Researchers from across world gathered for the First International Colloquium on Global Design and Marketing, held at the University's Lincoln Business School (8th-9th December 2011).

Academic experts outlined how flagship stores make use of an array of design elements, spanning architecture, layout, photography and film, music and even aroma to create an in-store experience which will elicit an emotional response in shoppers.

Delegates considered how images of youth are used heavily by high street fashion stores and the challenges this presents in trying to appeal to the over-50s market.

Other talks focussed on the success of western luxury brands in China, the incorporation of design elements into food packaging, and the challenges retailers face in maintaining corporate identity when selling through websites or mobile apps.

The colloquium was jointly organised by Professor TC Melewar of Brunel University, Professor Charles Dennis of the University of Lincoln and Tony Kent of the University of the Arts London.

Prof Dennis, who discussed his latest research into the outstanding power of the Harrods brand, conducted jointly with research company ROI Team, said: "Consumers everywhere are feeling the strain of the economic downturn and this is putting pressure on retailers at all ends of the spectrum. Those who will come through the downturn strongest are those who are able to distinguish themselves in the marketplace and offer their customers an experience they cannot get elsewhere.
"This colloquium was extremely timely and the discussions revealed some interesting and surprising insights into how design, branding and corporate identity are being used to shape the customer experience on the high street and online."
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