Shopper Marketing and Customer Experience Management

we believe it takes an inspiring story to make people buy

Lush? maybe not!

What  happens when you take a beautiful (handmade) creme, and put it in an eco friendly package? It creates a natural curiosity. Like it did in me. What happens when you look up the product online, and see loud communication, bright colors, and overstated messages about the product being completely handmade, and natural. Well, you are a bit put off, at first. But you are still interested, so you bookmark the brand, and decide to check it out on your next visit to the mall. Well, that’s what I did.

One sunny morning, I put on my walking shoes and decided to explore some new brands. (I am from retail, and stepping in and out of stores is my idea of unwinding. Don’t judge me).

The brand was Lush, and I spotted it in a corner, as soon as I entered Macy’s. I saw a stack of soap bars exuding beautiful smells. I am a sucker for skincare and cosmetics. I am also picky. And I almost always love anything handmade and natural. So I liked ‘Lush’ from the get go.

I entered the store and started exploring the products when I was interrupted by a sales woman offering help. I let her know that I was merely exploring and would ask for help if need be.

As I continued exploring, I noticed –

  1. The brand was beautiful. The products looked and felt nice.
  2. The brand was overpriced. (50$ for a small jar of lotion)
  3. The communication was jarring and redundant
  4. The sales associates were over excited (over caffeinated), and broke into a high pitched song each time a customer asked for a bubble bar demo (wonder why the excitement. It’s a bar of soap that creates bubbles!?!, even Rin Shakti could do that)
    They made it look like the face scrub I picked to smell, would change my life. (Really now?)
  5. The staff was pushy, quick to up sell and cross sell stuff I didn’t need. Now I know retail so it was easy to resist, but it still spoilt my experience

Now, I am not a whiner. But I have to say, that every (successful) brand has a story to tell. And the story has to be consistent & cohesive. All parts must come together in the end.

Lush has its story too. While it tells me a lot about the beautiful product and the thought behind it, it confuses me (borderline disgust) with its jarring, intrusive communication, and with its hyper and pushy sales executives. The product is meant to sooth, while the store experience left me hassled.

My Lush experience did not come together in the end.

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