Experiencing the Market

One quick stop. I promised myself. That would be it. I will not get distracted by the gummy bears, nor the nutella and definitely not the glistening chocolate cake that is sure to be calling out my name.

I stood outside the supermarket and gave myself this pep talk for what I think must be the 79th time. A bit too precise to be true but I am sure we all get what I mean. I was there to buy milk and only milk. Not brownies and cheese and that new lotion that just launched (what’s it called?), nope, no coffee, not even the detergent with a new fragrance.

I had been so determined to walk straight in to the supermarket and walk out with nothing but milk. Oh, and bread. Because that’s all I needed, right? Well, the two promoters selling me chicken nuggets and a shade of lipstick that was ‘made for me’ seemed to think otherwise. And, now, here I was at my car, an hour later, trying to get a trolley full of supermarket bags to fit in my trunk.

As I got in to the drivers seat and prepared to drive off I was hit with the sudden urge to solve this mystery once and for all. There has to be a logical reason to how a supposedly quick trip to the supermarket ends up turning in to a whole expedition by itself. Granted that the supermarket has very strategically placed the milk right at the corner, making sure you pass by all the aisles possible before you get to the everyday stuff, but that cant be it. It can’t be a complete lack of self-constraint either.

As I backtracked, I began to realize. One thing at a time, I can almost hear myself subconsciously marking the efforts of these guys.

Nice window display +1 point

Cool temperature as you walk in, welcome change from the heat. Yes. + 10 points

Aroma of freshly baked goods, yum. Lets check it out. +1 point.

Cakes and tarts seem to be glistening through the clean glass. +2 points

Ooh, is that a sample? +5 points.

Do you notice a pattern here?

Traalalala, hmm, nice tune. +1 point.

What’s this new coffee? Smells awesome. +2 points

To think of it, my skin really is suffering from dryness isn’t it? Lets try this lotion. +5 points

That’s a nice banner. Colorful. What does it say? 10% discount. No way! +2 points.

My hands feel great. Where’s that lotion? +5 points.

Traalalala.. lala .. la ..

The cheek of them! They had used my very own senses against me. By captivating each of my five senses at every corner, the supermarket had not only managed to hypnotize me somehow but also given me an experience I almost couldn’t wait for again..

What if everything could be experienced the same way? What if everyone used the same techniques? What if it is already being done? What if .. what if it’s called Experiential Marketing.