Holy Grail

Andrea Syverson is the founder and president of creative branding and merchandising consultancy IER Partners. For 20+ years, Andrea’s joy has been inspiring clients with innovative approaches to branding, product development and creative messaging. She’s the author of two books about brand building and creating customer-centric products that enhance brands: BrandAbout: A Seriously Playful Approach for Passionate Brand-Builders and Merchants and ThinkAbout: 77 Creative Prompts for Innovators. You may reach her at asyverson@ierpartners.com.

British fashion apparel retailer Topshop recently launched a fully transactional iPhone app to engage customers when they are in a store or on the go. With a significant percentage of Topshop’s online sales already coming from mobile devices, Topshop created the app to make its entire product catalog easily accessible to mobile customers. In the first four weeks that it has been available, the app has seen more than 280,000 downloads. “At this point customers expect a native app from their favorite retailers, at least on the iPhone,” said Alex Sbardella, mobile products manager at Red Ant, London. “For

Think about the last time you were excited by a product you saw in a catalog, store or online. What was it that made you take notice? What prompted you to buy it? For product developers, getting to the heart of these questions provides the insights that can help turn ho-hum product concepts into winning sales successes. In Willard Zangwill’s book, “Lightning Strategies for Innovation,” he references the Kano Model as a way to think through product development. From a customer’s viewpoint, a product has three types of features: • Presumed. These are the ones the customer assumes the product will

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