The changing face of Indian Telecom Retail

Telecom retail moving from customer service to customer experience

Image courtesy: Chute Gerdeman

A shift from customer support to customer experience seamlessly connects brand and consumer.

The transformation of Verizon Wireless:

Verizon Wireless came to Chute Gerdeman with a well-defined, yet multi-faceted, goal: transform their customer’s experience.

With players like Reliance Jio shaking up the Indian Telecom sector, we thought it poignant to look at what Indian telecom retail can learn from the transformation of one of the most futuristic telecom companies in the world:

Lifestyle Integration:

Verizon retail stores are transitioning from Telecom stores which were all about customer support (i.e. paying bills and complaining) to customer experience.

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Learning: Accessibility to cheaper and cheaper data services have lead to a seemingly never-ending price war, however, the future is not about Data Deals but about what Data can do to transform your life. The 4G LTE experience integrated with your every day life is central to the Verizon in-store experience. Fitness, business, music and sports all have a place at the Verizon Lifestyle Integrated Stores.

Verizon Destination Stores:

Introduce the future of Verizon retail with state-of-the-art interactive, hands-on digital experiences. Mobile lifestyle zones offer devices, accessories, and apps to better connect to the shopper’s lifestyle.

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Learning: This transformation is about more than selling phones – it’s about humanizing the brand and experiencing a more robust mobile life.

Verizon Smart Stores

Bring many of the principles of the larger Destination Stores to Verizon’s neighbourhood stores, providing seamless retail integration across the fleet. Interactive displays and lifestyle zones provide a hands-on shopping experience where technology is accessible and understandable. The design is modular and flexible to allow a scalable and fluid implementation. Iconic architecture, material finishes, merchandising strategy, and the customer journey now all feel consistent across Verizon’s entire retail footprint. With over 200 Smart Stores already open across the U.S., Verizon will transition all 1,700 stores in the coming months.

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Partner Showcase

Otterbox (a manufacturer of mobile phone covers) featured their customized covers on a branded wall within the new Verizon Destination Stores and Smart Store locations. Each of the mobile phone providers had a section to present their product lines, however the Verizon Brand design language was dominant, so each manufacturer brand had to present within their vernacular. Sony Playstation & GoPro Cameras are on display and available to try first-hand in an interactive stetting. While idle, the video monitors run a continuous loop of game footage, bringing the brands to life within the space.

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Learning: Working with partner brands can be transformative towards your own brand perception. It showcases the realms of possibilities that your brand has to offer.

Pop-Up stores

Chute Gerdeman worked with Verizon to develop a pop-up strategy and created a shop designed to bring excitement of the new Verizon brand to select markets with city-specific themes. They concepted the merchandise, created the displays, designed the promotional materials and activities specific to each market. Initial concepts ranged from tailgating for the NFL to New York Fashion Week.

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Learning: Tapping into the local culture, and tastes is essential to becoming a customer centric brand.

Executive Briefing Centers

With the development of the Verizon Destination Stores, Verizon Wireless asked Chute Gerdeman to create a conference center in each location. The space needed to be as brand engaging as the Destination Stores. Providing a private location for executive team members to gather and collaborate with ease.

Learning: Using retail stores as business hubs ensure maximum capacity utilization while also ensuring that the employees are in touch with real time customer behaviour, allowing them to be agile, make real time decisions and gather feedback.

Verizon Smart Stores

Bringing many of the principles of the larger Destination Stores to Verizon’s neighbourhood stores, providing seamless retail integration across the fleet. Interactive displays and lifestyle zones providing a hands-on shopping experience where technology is accessible and understandable. The design is modular and flexible to allow a scalable and fluid implementation.

Iconic architecture, material finishes, merchandising strategy, and the customer journey now all feel consistent across Verizon’s entire retail footprint. With over 200 Smart Stores already open across the U.S., Verizon will transition all 1,700 stores in the coming months.



Contributing Authors
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