Netflix mixes immersion with commerce in multi-title pop-up store

    • Netflix is opening an immersive shopping experience at The Grove, a shopping center in Los Angeles, in time for the holidays, per a press release
    • The pop-up store features limited-edition merchandise from popular series including “Stranger Things,” “Bridgerton” and “Squid Game.” It is the first multi-title immersive shopping experience for the streamer, which has taken steps to dramatically expand in-person experiences. 
    • In addition to the retail elements, the space includes photo areas featuring life-sized versions of Netflix characters such as Vecna from “Stranger Things” and the Young-Hee doll from “Squid Game.”

    As consumers return to business as usual following two pandemic years, marketers across industries have once again begun exploring immersive experiences.  Netflix’s 10,000-square-foot temporary retail space runs Oct. 13 through Jan. 6 and gives fans a real-life taste of some of their favorite shows free of charge. Starting in early December, Netflix will add a second floor featuring immersive elements from titles including “Emily in Paris,” “Matilda” and others, along with holiday-themed content from shows like “The Great British Baking Show: Holidays.” 

    Netflix has ramped up immersive experiences as public health restrictions loosen and subscriber growth cools. Previous activations based around popular shows have proven fruitful for the company, and a holiday-catered experience could help boost the streamer’s reputation as it looks to retain user loyalty. Netflix in the past has also ventured into the merchandise space, having launched its own e-commerce marketplace in June last year.

    “Following the incredible success and excitement from our fans for our immersive experiences around the globe, this felt like the most organic next step to continue our growth and bring Netflix’s most beloved shows together in a completely new way,” said Greg Lombardo, head of live experiences at Netflix, in a statement.

    The immersive element to the shopping experience, along with the promotion of limited-edition merchandise, may spur those who traditionally shop online to make their way to a store, where consumers typically spend more compared to online habits. Such an activation also comes as economic worries and inflationary price increases have retailers worried about holiday profits, with several planning to up their promotions to help curb projected losses.


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