Think Outside the Industry: Samsung’s “Un-Store”

With Samsung’s new NYC store focusing on experiences instead of products, looks like they’ve taken a page out of live entertainment’s handbook!

Fast Company reports that “Samsung opened a new 40,000-square-foot store in New York’s Meatpacking District.” With no Samsung devices!

Sarah Kessler writes, “Instead of endless product shelves, the space … features a three-story digital screen composed of 96 of Samsung’s 55-inch visual displays; a 90-seat theater; a portable demo kitchen; an art gallery; a multimedia studio; and a café. In it, Samsung will host events like film screenings, book launches, DJ sets, and, already on the schedule, an Oscars viewing party for Galaxy owners.”

Customers can make purchases digitally — with guidance from the store’s staff — and get help from onsite technicians.

The article states that while the percentage of purchases consumers make in physical stores is steadily decreasing, physical stores remain important to brands because they “introduce people to new products, allow people to try before they buy, and help create relationships with customers.”

And trying out products is what matters most to customers when they actually go to stores. Jim touched on this in his post, Don’t Throw Away Your One Strength, in which he wrote that, just like in-person retailers, live entertainment marketers have to make their strength pay off:

“[Live entertainment] has one unbelievable strength, and it’s the fact that the person is ACTUALLY there, experiencing it as they never could at home. But you could easily turn that strength into a liability, as many offline retailers have done, by forgetting that every little thing about the experience matters, and that, as Jordan Roth says, the experience needs to be a live one. …

The live entertainment experience is about being great, not being pretty good. Let’s make sure we rise to that challenge.”

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