By Aimee Chanthadavong

In an attempt to interact with customers at store level, telecommunication company Telstra have been innovating traditional visual merchandising in their windows for the past 12 months with Retail Engine.

Their most recent project, which lasted for five weeks from 31 May to 10 July, saw the launch of an interactive window using augmented reality in their Bourke Street Icon store in Melbourne.

Speaking to RetailBiz, Adrian Newport, general manager, inventory & execution, national sales & service, Telstra country wide, said the campaign was targeted at customers who had their own phones and wanted to get a plan without handset repayments.

“We wanted to involve customers at a store level in our Bring Your Own (BYO) campaign. Retail Engine introduced us to augmented reality technology and we used it to add a new dimension to the campaign enabling us to bring the message to life in 3D in the window,” he said.

As part of the technology, customers who walked past the window were greeted with live video of themselves inside a large projected phone.  When a flyer promoting the campaign was held up to the window, the offer was brought to life with 3D objects appearing to jump out of the flyer on screen.
Through the power of augmented reality, customers could move the flyer around in front of the screen and the 3D objects containing offer messages and video, followed the flyer in all directions.

To see the technology, click here to view the video.

“The customers I witnessed interacting with the window loved the concept, it engaged a broad demographic which was surprising and created a talking point. The data collected during the five weeks campaign showed 150,000 people walked past the window and 35 per cent of those engaged with it for up to 10 seconds,” Newport said.

And while the BYO campaign has concluded, Telstra said it will continue to look at using augmented reality technology and other technologies that were used in partnership with Retail Engine including projected animation, surface sound, touch film, gesture interaction and live video calling.

“We will continue to be more innovative with the visual merchandising in our windows, as we have great store locations and street frontage and this will assist us to engage more customers with our messages,” Newport said.