Next Gen Point-of-Sale

MA Digital Media Management
IRP PID v2, 6 Aug 2015

In my 18 years of experience in both advertising and graphic design, I’ve never been this close to the market before. My current unique position as a Senior Brand Designer for Global Lux in Unilever, allows me to experience the full spectrum of product innovations, brand executions and applications on a global scale. And I absolutely love every aspect of my job! I love both the brand personality and the brand vision.

As the saying goes, “if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.” That’s how I feel about my job. But being content with what I have now is not a security for the future. Especially as a proud single mother of two. Having experienced a redundancy prior to this job, I had to prepare myself before it hits me again and that’s when I took the plunge into taking Masters in Digital Media Management at Hyper Island Singapore. I see vast potential as that’s where the whole world is moving towards — The era of the connected age and the Internet of Things.

Of all the areas of design I’ve done, Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) is where I much prefer, due to longer timelines and better work life balance. Its also a rather niche market with lesser competition, as compared to advertising. Hence, its where I want to further develop my expertise in.

As a designer and consumer myself, the current user experience for retail shopping is not optimal, especially for sensorial products like personal care. In the not so distant past and even now, consumers get to know of a newly launched product via traditional media like TVC, magazine ad, newspaper ad, and out-of-home channels and increasingly digital campaigns where brands engage with consumers through social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest etc. If the ad was memorable, it triggers brand recall the next time the consumer is in the brick and mortar store. And the consumer has to do the ‘work’ of associating the advertisement that they have seen with the physical product in hand. Not an integrated sensorial user experience.

What if the moment I step into the store, I get a message on my mobile prompting me to check out the newly launched limited edition body wash and I can click on a link that feature the product video and fragrance story. As I’m smelling the fragrance while deciding if I should give it a try, I could perhaps at the same time share with my friends about how I feel on the new fragrance and get them to give it a try as well… With the current technology, this is not too far from reality.

This brings me to the clear statement for my IRP:

Clear Statement

How can brands leverage mobile to be the next generation realtime POS experience?

Specially designed point-of-sale materials with product story, call to action and reason to believe, in various shapes, forms and sizes with beautifully rendered product and or talent key visuals, are traditionally utilised as a marketing tool to entice consumers into purchasing the products on display in brick and mortar stores. And its still an essential tool as part of a product marketing toolkit for greater shelf standout against competition.

Identified area of opportunity

The number of smartphone users worldwide will surpass 2 billion in 2016, according to new figures from eMarketer. How can brands leverage on mobile to be the next generation POS material? Making use of the sound and visual in the hands of every consumers at the point of sale to sell and effectively convert purchasing decision moments into active sale.

Who is this for…

I hope to eventually shift my career path from a designer to a consultant. This MA is my starting point. With this research piece I hope to add value to my clients at Lux and in the course of that change my current role. On a wider scale, I hope to be able to make a small impact in the world of big data. Making sense and putting data into good use to better improve our lifestyle. One step closer to Singapore’s vision of being the first Smart Nation.

Tools I’ll need…

JTBD interviews with identified test subjects (My friends, clients and classmates you’ll be hearing from me soon) to understand consumer purchasing behaviour in personal care.

Redesign user experience based on insights from consumers interview. Design prototype and conduct experiment with the same identified test subjects. Iterate from feedback gathered to refine prototype. Repeat if needed.

Present my in-depth findings from the research and share them with marketers (my clients) to confirm its visibility and also to gather feedback from their perspective.

Support I’ll need

Technical support, as I self admit technologically challenged. But I’ve learned from my journey at Hyper Island that I don’t have to a techie to lead the change. I need verification that my conceptual prototype is logically sound and doable. If you are an expert in geo-fencing, proximity targeting and ibeacon technology, please get in touch with me. I want to pick your brains! I promise… I’ll be gentle.

Next Steps

Now to 31 Aug
Deep dive into retail consumer shopping behaviour
Research into geo-fencing, proximity targeting and ibeacon technology (both possibilities and limitations)
Draft interview questions and conduct interview with consumer test group
Form hypothesis
Define and redesign consumer user experience
Submission of progress report 1

1 Sep to 30 Sep
Design prototype
Testing of prototype
Submission of progress report 2

1 Oct to 31 Oct
Final experiment
Conclude test results
Submission of progress report 3

1 Nov
Start writeup: Argument, Recommendation, and Limitation
Identify areas for future research

20 Nov
Review first draft

4 Dec
Review second draft

14 Dec

Keeping my fingers crossed!

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